|Northport Class of 2012|
The class motto of Northport’s 2012 graduating seniors was “I don’t know where I’m going, but I’m on my way,” a quote from American poet Carl Sandburg, and a more refreshing group of well-spoken young people would be hard to imagine. They were serious and funny by turn, but their every word was honest. “We didn’t always love each other every minute,” they admitted, referring to historic feuds and fights along the path from kindergarten to graduation, “but here we are.” Still together. Setting off into the world.
|Salutatorian John Petoskey|
|Valedictorian Nina Muller|
|Commencement speaker Steve Wetherbee|
Is graduation anywhere else like this? A commencement address that includes a banjo? A little “flower girl” (Olivia Craker) giving out, from a basket on her arm, flowers (white orchids) to all the seniors on the stage? Seniors producing flowers (white lilies) from under their chairs to take down into the audience and present to parents and guardians? After diplomas have been handed out, the slide show (that's what the big screen in the top photo was all about), with pictures of each graduate, from baby photos to senior portraits?
Every year I, like many others in the audience, have more grey in my hair and am further in time from my own graduation. This year’s class was not yet born the first summer of my bookstore in Northport. The connection I had to the school during the years I tutored there has weakened, more a feeling in my heart now than an item on my daily agenda. And yet, Northport graduation never loses its magic for me. I wonder if these young people know how many people are made happy just by the sight of them on the sidewalk? They are our future.
So congratulations to the Class of 2012:
Megan Elaine Henderson
Austin Glen Miller
Anina Lee Punahele Naegeli Müller
John Minodeé Petoskey
Forrest Alexander Rogers
Chelsea Renee Wack
Francis Mitchell Wanageshik
Best wishes to you all as you go out into the world. May you work hard, do well and do good, and may all your dreams come true.