Pride in Port unites the community through town spirit

Port residents come together to celebrate popular annual festival


Sean Lui

Guggenheim students march in the 29th annual Pride in Port parade, an event that has held a hallmark spot in the town for many years.

Jackeline Fernandes, Staff Writer

Hundreds of Port residents flocked to the 29th annual Pride in Port on Sep. 16.  Pride in Port, which celebrates town unity and traditions, started at Schreiber with Spirit Day and the fall pep rally on Sep. 15.  Students and staff, clad in blue and white, slathered their faces with face paint and gathered in the gym to show their school spirit.  The Pep Rally consisted of various games like tug-of-war matches between the sports teams, performances by the Portettes and the cheerleaders, and the appearance of the iconic school mascot, the Viking.  Student Council planned the pep rally, which celebrates the achievements of fall athletes.

“Pep Rally united all of the grades together, and it was especially funny when the rope snapped during one of the games of tug of war,” said sophomore Stephanie Kapsalis.  “It also helped get everyone excited for the next day’s event of Pride in Port.”

The Pride in Port festivities continued that Saturday, starting with the Pride in Port pre-parade show in front of the train station.  Every year, the street signs along Main Street are changed to read “Pride in Port Way,” further heightening the sense of unity and local spirit.  The parade itself started on lower Main Street and finished on Campus Drive.

Spectators gathered along the sidewalks to watch their friends and family participate in the parade.  Members of the Port Washington Fire Department were among the many groups represented at the parade, as were this year’s Port Athletic Hall of Fame athletes.  Residents involved with local organizations and businesses marched in the parade, as well as students and teachers from all of Port’s schools.

“I remember marching in the parade with my dog and my friends from elementary school when I was in the first grade,” said sophomore Alexis Knepper.  “The parade is a tradition worth keeping.”

Schreiber students displayed their town spirit through music and dance.  The Portettes and cheerleaders performed their choreographed routines, and the Schreiber Viking Band played music during the procession.

“I like playing in Pride in Port because seeing the people react to our music is so fun,” said sophomore Danielle Weinstein.  “I love seeing the little kids dancing on the sidewalks.”

After the parade, the Family Fun Day Carnival began.  The front field at Weber Middle School was filled with free activities targeted toward younger children, including numerous bouncy houses and a rock climbing wall.  Members of multiple Schreiber clubs manned booths at the food tent and around the perimeter of the field.  Letter Club offered free pumpkin painting, and Science Olympiad sold snow cones.

Although it’s a tradition to hold the homecoming football game during the Pride in Port celebration, this year was different.  Since the opposing football team forfeited the game before it even took place, the boys varsity soccer team played the Baldwin Bruins instead.  The turf was packed with spectators of all ages despite the oppressive humidity of the day.

The halftime ceremony consisted of performances by the Portettes and the cheerleaders. Shortly afterwards, the 2017 Athletic Hall of Fame induction ceremony took place during halftime as well to honor former Schreiber athletes who excelled in sports during high school.  In addition, the homecoming king and queen were announced; senior Matthew Gawley was voted homecoming king and senior Danielle DiRuggiero was voted homecoming queen.

“Everyone from every age and every school, from different clubs and different sports, comes together and supports each other on this one day,” said junior Sophie Roth.  “We all show each other why we are proud to live here in Port.”