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CONESTOGA – Conestoga seniors received thunderous applause when they turned their tassels at their graduation ceremony Saturday afternoon.

They earned the ovation through their work in a host of activities during their Conestoga High School careers.

Members of the Conestoga Class of 2018 celebrated commencement with an hour-long program in the high school gym. A large crowd watched an event that included speeches, recitation of scholarships, presentation of flowers, recognition of foreign-exchange students and awarding of diplomas.

CHS Principal David Friedli welcomed the audience to the ceremony and introduced both senior speakers. Reagan Ruffner delivered the salutatorian address and Caylin Maier gave the valedictorian address.

CHS Guidance Counselor Laurel Kreifels honored students who had earned scholarships and academic awards. Alexa Bock, Jessi Brashear, Kayla Colgrove, Charlie Erny, Autumn Hardesty, Caylin Maier, Kiera Mendoza, Reagan Ruffner, Kenna Simmerman, Rebecca Simpson, Sophia Svanda and Kaylyn Weilage were all National Honor Society members.

Seniors presented flowers to family, friends and other loved ones before returning to the stage. Friedli then delivered certificates of appreciation to foreign-exchange students Gloria Izquierdo and Anna Raisanen. Both students were involved in multiple activities at Conestoga throughout the year.

Class members walked across the stage to receive their diplomas. The Cougars gathered for a group photo before walking outside to greet family and friends. They ended the day by participating in the traditional tossing of mortarboards on the high school lawn.

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