The annual Tigard High School powderpuff is an exciting time for girls of all grades to switch roles with football players, represent their class and also demonstrate Tigard High tradition. It brings classes together just in time for homecoming, and it lets football players try their hand at cheering the cheers they hear screamed from the stands every Thursday and Friday night.
While there is no official start date for when this tradition started, many people agree that it either started in 1931 at Western State College of Colorado, or in 1945 at Eastern State Teachers College in Madison, South Dakota. There, twenty three female students signed up to play in their school’s formerly cancelled homecoming game, despite one person writing that the idea of girls playing football “was enough to curl your teeth”. Here at Tigard, girls of all grades and sports can sign up and participate in this exciting annual event. Proceeds made during this game go towards funding the junior class, whether it be their class activities or hosting the annual prom.
“It’s a fundraiser for the junior class, which helps fund the prom in the spring” said Heidi DeHaan, the head organizer of the powderpuff. In her nearly 10 years of constructing this event, she always loves the great variety and unity that the girls who participate feel. “We’ve had great participation with it in the past,” she said. “Because it’s during the fall sports season, you get a lot of girls that aren’t already playing sports, which gets a wide variety of girls to get involved- some who have played sports before and some who haven’t all come around an event like this and have a lot of fun and learn how to do it.”
“I liked it! It was cool,” Noni, a sophomore said. She played last year as a freshman and also expressed how much she liked it, and that others should sign up for it. “I think people should join [this] year, because you get to meet a lot of new people and play against other grades, [and] we were unified.”
The student body also loves to get involved. “I love the powderpuff! I think it’s fun to watch, and it’s great competition.” sophomore Molly Kerns said.
DeHaan agrees. “We get a lot of fans who come out to watch their peers, and I think we get a pretty diverse mix of the student body participating, which is really cool to see that happen,” she said.
History teacher Eric Smith, the junior class coach, is also very excited for the event this year. “[The players] really embrace the game of football,” Smith said. “I know that as far as our teams, and I think for other teams as well, it really does bring at least the class together. Our junior girls have said ‘It doesn’t matter if I would never hang out with this other girl, at powderpuff time [we] come together’. Powderpuff brings people together.”
If you are interested in participating in this unifying and fun event, sign ups go through Oct. 6.