École Secondaire Highwood High School celebrated Grade 12 graduation on Thursday in George Lane Park.

Fortunately, the rain held off with only a sprinkle coming down on the grads and crowd gathered at the outdoor ceremony.

As is tradition, the Class of 2024 gathered in front of the Museum of the Highwood at 10:30 a.m. for photos and then marched down 4th Avenue SE to George Lane Park.

Grad Mom Kathy Lambourn, whose daughter Trista was graduating, was filled with mixed emotions about the day.

"It's a happy-sad moment, to be honest. Oh my gosh, it's been a sad week as everyone knows, and we've gone through some trials here, but we've made it. It's good, we're happy that she's graduating. We're sad that she's graduating but it's just another milestone in your child's life, right?"

Lambourn was referencing the tragic death of a grade 12 grad who recently passed away in a tragic car accident.

In honour of two classmates who passed away this year, students wore a special pin for each one.

Teacher Laura Myers who organized the graduation ceremony addressed the crowd early about staying positive and making it a celebration.

Dignitaries spoke, including a special guest and former Highwood graduate Connor Christmas. Christmas is now a professional comedian and definitely kept the mood light and fun.

Another reminder that 'Once a Mustang, always a Mustang'.

The grads also got to use new aluminum bleachers that were a long time coming with many local businesses helping out along with some grant money.

The final tossing of caps wrapped up the ceremony at around 12:30 p.m.