What was once a longtime tradition, has been brought back to life just in the past six years.
Rockport-Fulton High School has one of the few bonfire traditions throughout the Coastal Bend. The bonfire is lit at the beginning of homecoming week.
The Rockport-Fulton homecoming bonfire is managed by the Pirate Club, but built by the students that attend RFHS and their parents. It takes about a month to plan and about two and half weeks just to begin the build on the homecoming bonfire.
Safety is the biggest priority, and before the bonfire is built, the fire marshal will make sure that the wind and land area will be safe for the massive bonfire. The crew even has unsurance during the time that the bonfire is being built.
There is no strategy to building the bonfire structure, but students and parents tell KRIS 6 that they start with many layers of pallets. They begin to add more wood, trees and debris that will help it burn. Some students even said they used old wood from Hurricane Harvey to help stoke the bonfire.
There is no specific height to the bonfire. It varies every year, depending on the available materials.
Each side of the bonfire is dedicated to each class. Seniors always get the forward facing side. Each side of the bonfire will be decorated with signs made by students and parents. Some signs highlight the football team, artwork, or just names of students.
This bonfire is not funded by the school. Sponsors include Church Unlimited, Superior Plumbing and Cornerstone Home Health.
The RFHS homecoming bonfire begins at 7 p.m. at Rockport Beach.
A few seniors will have the privilege of torching the bonfire. The homecoming celebration will involve the entire community. All are invited to attend and enjoy the unique homecoming tradition.
There are four awards for the class that decorates their side the best and voted on by the RFHS principal and vice principal.
Those awards are:
- Most Spirited
- Best Themed
- Most Original
- People’s Choice
The Rockport-Fulton Pirates host West Oso at 7:30 p.m. Friday.