EAST GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The threat of Eastern Equine Encephalitis took a toll on East Grand Rapids High School’s homecoming festivities on Friday.
Following the recommendation of public health officials, the football game was moved up to 5 p.m., and then the homecoming parade was canceled.
Until the first hard frost of the season, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services is encouraging people in all counties where EEE has surfaced to postpone, reschedule or cancel outdoor activities happening at or after dusk.
The community didn’t seem to mind the early kick-off but were bummed out about canceling the parade.
“It was kind of sad because I’m on homecoming court and I was really excited to be in the homecoming parade,” senior Jordan Plumstead said.
The canceled parade let down more than just students as it’s a homecoming tradition for all ages.
“I was going to be in the parade this year. That was a bit of a letdown because I was super excited that my daughter was going to be walking with her Brownie troop,” parent Katie Potter said.
While many people were bummed at first, they’re glad safety is the priority.
“The health department and the schools do have everyone’s interest at heart and it’s better to be safe than sorry,” Potter said.
East Grand Rapids Public Schools has yet to announce whether these changes and cancellations will continue throughout the season. Officials said they would provide additional information in the days to come.