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Coming soon: Starlite Drive-in to show graduating seniors on the big screen

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WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Seniors across Kansas are getting ready to move onto their next chapter, likely not being able to walk across the stage to grab their diplomas.

“It’s kind of upsetting for some of us cause some of us have worked really hard to graduate,” said Taylor Ruiz, Wichita East High School senior.

Four year of hard work and Ruiz is just hoping for a moment of recognition.

“Even having virtual graduation wouldn’t be so bad cause people will be like, ‘Oh yeah, they graduated! They did it!'”

One Wichitan is rallying community members to give the Class of 2020 that chance.

“I thought, what about the drive-in? If they do like a slideshow presentation or something that kind of recognize these kids and their accomplishments,” said Joshua Blick.

Instead of summer blockbusters, Starlite Drive-in will use both of their big screens to show off the graduating seniors. They are calling it “Project Graduation.”

Wichita, non-profit, KANSEL, is helping to organize the event.

“It’s a great accomplishment, and it’s an accomplishment worth recognition. I think it’s important for us to get the opportunity to pause recognize that accomplishment and give them that momentum going into college or going into a career,” said Thomas Montiel, Executive Director of KANSEL.

Any additional funds raised from the drive-in graduations will go towards KANSEL and their mission of helping students earn their GED.

Safety will still be a priority during the celebrations. There will be no concession stands or restrooms open. Everyone will have to stay in their cars but the celebration will still be memorable.

“As they enter into the Starlite Drive-in they can see names and congratulations and things like that,” said Montiel.

‘It’s important to see how hard everybody has worked,” said Ruiz.

Organizers are currently working with schools across Sedgwick County and other neighboring cities to make this possible and setup dates. They are aiming to start celebrations in May.

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