Local marketing company, Trio Solutions Inc. (TRIO), has partnered with Production Design Associates (PDA), Gary Coleman Photography, and The Bend to offer tri-county area schools a drive-in graduation option for graduating students.
The graduation event can accommodate up to 100 students at a time and requires the students and families to remain in their cars throughout the program. Through social distancing, students walk across the stage with a scenic backdrop of the Ashley River, while families are encouraged to decorate their cars in honor of their graduating student.
“No kid should graduate via a tele-conferencing platform,” Jeff Nickles, owner of PDA, said. “We live in a beautiful city and should take advantage of the outdoor space we have. These kids can have an event that is memorable yet safe.”
PDA is one of the Southeast’s largest production companies and has produced events ranging from major festivals to CNN and Fox presidential debates.
“Both myself and Jeff have graduating seniors,” Jessica Munday, president of TRIO, said. “We wanted to take advantage of our profession in a way that could help ensure these kids have a meaningful experience for a milestone that only happens once in life.”
The drive-in graduation program is available for graduating senior classes but can also be tailored to other grades where graduating ceremonies are typically held, such as kindergarten, fifth grade and eighth grade. The Bend is able to accommodate up to two ceremonies per day. The ceremony will take place under the newly constructed Pavilion adjacent to the Ashley River.
“We have curated this program to ensure it is a safe, contactless event that includes unique elements so each student feels important on their special day,” Munday said.