Rainier and Yelm High Schools to Host Graduation Ceremonies This Week


As the end of the school year approaches, the soon-to-be graduating classes of Yelm and Rainier are preparing to embark on the next chapter of their lives.

A graduation ceremony for the seniors at Rainier High School will take place at 6 p.m. on Friday, June 9, in the school’s gym, while the seniors from Yelm High School will receive their diplomas at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday, June 11, at the Tacoma Dome.

Graduation parking in the Tacoma Dome lots costs $15 and may be limited, according to the Tacoma Dome’s website.

Following Rainier’s commencement ceremony, the new graduates will take part in a celebratory parade.

Rob Henry, with Rainier High School, said the parade for the Class of 2023 is estimated to begin sometime between 7 and 7:15 p.m. on June 9.

Henry said the graduates parade began during the COVID-19 pandemic and has seen a strong reception from the community. Since the first iteration of the parade, Henry said it has served as a way to send off graduating seniors as they partake on their journey of life beyond high school.

“The seniors seem to enjoy doing it. It’s a way for them to give back to the community and show their appreciation as well,” Henry said. “It’s a really neat community-based event and we’d love to see community members come out to support our seniors.”

Following their graduation, the seniors will get in their vehicles and will form a line behind the new Rainier High School gym. Once the line is formed and complete, the parade will begin.

Participants will proceed out of the back gate by the district office, before turning right onto Centre Street. Once the parade makes its way to Centre Street, they will turn left on Easy Street, followed by a left turn on Meyers Street, before turning left onto state Route 507.

The parade will then turn right on to Centre Street near the Chevron gas station and will then continue until they have reached Rochester Street, where they’ll turn right.

It will then turn left onto Volesky Drive, before turning right onto Volesky Drive again. The parade will then take a right onto Olympia Street.

Once on Olympia Street, the parade will continue until they’ve once again reached Centre Street, where they’ll turn left. It will continue until they reach state Route 507, where they’ll turn right. Parade participants will then continue down state Route 507 until they hang a left on Alaska Street and then turn left to conclude the parade behind Rainier High School.