Main Street, San Andreas came alive with cheers and loud music Friday afternoon, as Calaveras High Schoolers attended their Uptown Rally–an annual fall tradition that was delayed this school year due to COVID-19 and bad weather.

At the center of the event was the reveal of the school’s new mascot, the Red Hawk, which was greeted with exuberance from the spirited crowd of teens wearing red, some donning hats that displayed Calaveras’ old “Redskins” mascot.

Calaveras High Schoolers have been without a mascot since 2015, when Assembly Bill 30 was signed by former governor Jerry Brown, forcing Calaveras and three other California high schools to abandon the “Redskins” mascot due to its racially charged connotations. As a result, the Calaveras community voted to have no mascot, which continued until this year.

The final class of “Redskins” graduated in 2019, and during the 2021-22 school year students voted for a new mascot, the Red Hawk. Other options considered were the “Skulls” and the “Coyotes.”

During the rally, athletes in spring sports including baseball, softball and track, were spotlighted, as were the top three valedictorians. Fall athletes were recognized during an indoor rally in October at the end of the football season, but the school’s Associated Student Body promised the Class of 2022 that they would experience their senior Uptown Rally before the school year ended.

Calaveras High School seniors will graduate on June 9 in their first full-blown commencement ceremony since the pandemic.

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Dakota graduated from Bret Harte in 2013 and went to Davidson College, NC where she earned a bachelor's degree in Arab studies. After spending time studying in the Middle East and Europe, she is happy to be home, writing about the community she loves.

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