Holding the coveted Class Cup trophy, which they won as sophomores back in 2016, are seniors Alex Griggs, Molly Devin and Kelsey Ryan. Looking on with no small amount of jealousy are juniors Clair Fay, Charlie Vermeer and Anna McDonald.

KNOXVILLE — Homecoming 2018 might be a rumble in the jungle as the Knoxville Panthers take on the Grinnell Tigers on Sept. 28, but rivalry already is rumbling in the high school’s halls.

Each year the four classes at KHS — freshmen through seniors — compete for the coveted Class Cup. And it’s almost a given most years that the seniors will win. Except in 2016, when the sophomores surprised everyone in the weeklong competition aimed at building up school spirit.

All grown up now, the class of 2019 is ready to reclaim the cup as seniors and become its first two-time winners, senior Molly Devin said.

“We’re gonna have a great class competition, with the seniors winning it,” she said.

“I have to object to that,” upstart junior Claire Fay shot back. “We don’t know that that’s gonna happen.”

Students win class points by bringing canned food items to events, participating in dress-up days or simply showing up at events. The public is encouraged to attend the pep rally Thursday night at Ken Locke Stadium, the parade Friday afternoon on the town square and the game Friday night.

The parade’s grand marshall will be longtime Knoxville schools administrative assistant Pam Raymie, who retired last year after 19 years with the district.

Rain forced the pep rally into the KHS gym last year, but that won’t happen this year, Devin vowed.

“It’s gonna be bright and sunny and blue skies,” she said.

“We’re hoping it will,” Fay countered, again.

“It will be,” Devin shot back.

“We’re trying to have hope for it, Fay said, getting in the last word.

But Devin’s still forecasts a zero percent chance of Fay and her friends getting the Class Cup.

The schedule

Monday: Dodgeball tournament in the KHS gym starts at 6 p.m. Teams of students and teachers will compete.

Tuesday: Support Your Panthers Day, with a home cross country meet at Pine Knolls Country Club starting at 4:15 p.m. and a home volleyball match vs. Eddyville-Blakesburg at 7 p.m.

Thursday: Junior class jersey auction at 5:30 p.m., pep rally with crowning of homecoming royalty at 7 p.m., Ironman volleyball at 8:15 p.m., followed by Powder-puff football.

Friday: Spirit Assembly at 1:20 p.m., Parade at 3 p.m., varsity football game at 7:30 p.m.

Saturday: Homecoming dance from 8 to 11 p.m.


Pat Finan is the editor of the Knoxville Journal-Express and Pella Chronicle. He can be reached at 641-295-0624 or via email at or

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