"HAIL PARK HIGH"
Words and Music by Frederick Schulte (circa 1930)
|HAIL TO THEE PARK HIGH! HAIL THY ORANGE AND BLUE
THY LIGHT SHALL GUIDE US, A BEACON BRIGHT AND TRUE
WE'LL SERVE THE ALWAYS, THIS OUR PLEDGE SHALL BE,
PARK HIGH FOR-EVER, HAIL, HAIL, HAIL TO THEE
Washington Park High School in Racine opened in September of 1928 with Mr. William Giese as the first Principal. Since then, the building has been renovated, added on to, and updated. However, the names of the yearbook (The Kipikawi, Indian name for the Root River which flows through Washington Park; the name has been shortened in recent years to "Kipi") and the newspaper (The Beacon, symbolic of the Racine Lighthouse, of which I was a writer for my Junior and Senior year) have not changed. The "Panthers" nickname is of more recent vintage, coming from the 1950's.
I am a third generation graduate of Park High School. My grandmother, Harriet James (Mertens, 1933) and my Aunt Winifred Mertens (Nathan) went to Park (my mother is a graduate of St. Catherine's High School, class of 1957). One of my greatest memories is driving home with my grandmother my sophomore year, and she is singing from memory "Hail Park". In a bit of irony, she died the day after Park lost its record fourth straight boys' varisty basketball game in one season to cross-town rival Horlick in the spring of 1985.
Park won the WIAA state football championship in 1988, with junior Fullback Brent Moss as the workhorse of the Panthers. I was in attendance at the championship game at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, and was never prouder to sing the Alma Mater penned so long ago by Mr. Schulte.
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