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Northland Schools Honor Class of 2020 in #BeTheLightMN

Updated: April 07, 2020 01:57 PM

Starting Monday night more than 200 Minnesota high schools turned on their stadium lights as a part of a growing social media request called Be the Light Minnesota. Aitkin, Cloquet, Crosby-Ironton, Duluth Denfeld, Esko and Mountain Iron-Buhl are some of the Northland schools participating in the movement. 

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Slowly but surely the lights came on Monday evening. 

The movement started in Colorado, spread to Texas and now high schools across the state of Minnesota are sharing the light.

Monday night Hermantown lit up Fichtner field at 8:20 and kept the lights on for 20 minutes and 20 seconds to honor the class of 2020. They plan to do so every Monday, as does Duluth East with the lights at Ordean Stadium.

Down the road at Egerdahl Field, Proctor is also sharing that they are Rail strong. They lit up the lights at 8 pm and plan to do so every Monday the entire month of April and May.

"We felt it was important to show our kids the support they need at this time and the hope that they need at this time.," said Proctor Athletic Director Dan Stauber. "They're resilient and they'll be back stronger than ever."

"I think being such a tight knit community we can all rally around together and be one community like one bright light," added Ben Harnell, a senior at Proctor. 

The movement is meant to continue to unite schools, students, and communities together even during times when they can't physically be together. 

"I think it's a pretty cool gesture especially for our seniors. They're missing out on a lot of things right now and I feel bad for them. [For] everybody, our staff, faculty and community, it's a tough time for all of us," commented Hermantown Athletic Director Beth Clark. 

The trend is stretching across the state. On the Iron Range Greenway lit up their field honoring the class of 2020 on their scoreboard. They're encouraging fans to drive by and honk while keeping a safe social distance. 

"Anything that you can do," Dan Mell said as the Greenway Athletic Director, "to kind of get out of the car and practice that social distancing and still bond gives them that hope."

The movement will stretch to Grand Rapids and Bigfork, who plan to turn on their lights on Wednesday and be the hope their communities need. 

"It's kind of a simple gesture but I think it's something easy that we all can do. I think its going to be very touching when we put those lights on and think about all those great things that our school provides," said Grand Rapids Athletic Director Anne Campbell.

Copyright 2020 WDIO-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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