Reserved Parking

Seniors Paint Their Own Spots For Second Year

Ashlyn Gazlay poses with her brand new parking spot featuring her car in the background. Trying not to be basic, she said, she decided to mix her pink and green paint both with white to make two new colors and make the lines different sizes. “I looked up some ideas on Pinterest, but those were ones everyone was doing, so I decided to just use the two colors I wanted -green and pink- and just drew random, curved lines that were different sizes and added my name,” Gazlay said. “The process was pretty long and took four separate days to do it.”

Photo Courtesy Ashlyn Gazlay

Ashlyn Gazlay poses with her brand new parking spot featuring her car in the background. Trying not to “be basic,” she said, she decided to mix her pink and green paint both with white to make two new colors and make the lines different sizes. “I looked up some ideas on Pinterest, but those were ones everyone was doing, so I decided to just use the two colors I wanted -green and pink- and just drew random, curved lines that were different sizes and added my name,” Gazlay said. “The process was pretty long and took four separate days to do it.”

Heidi Williams, Reporter

For a second year, the school has brought back seniors being able to paint parking spots. For $75, seniors were able to purchase a parking spot, submit a design to paint on that spot, and park in the painted spot for the rest of the year

Early in the morning on Sept. 18, students lined up outside the gym to get the approval to start painting. The parking lot was surrounded by caution tape, and the only items allowed inside the spots were paint. Students, alongside their family and friends, spent their weekend perfecting their spot to arrive the day after with a flashy new parking stall reserved for them.

“It’s helpful because I have a morning off period, so I know I have a good parking spot,” senior Ashlyn Gazlay said.” Because I’m in PALS, I go off campus in the middle of the day, and I would come back to literally no spots left and have to park on the curb.”

With 2022 being the second year of the school bringing the parking spots to life, senior Wyatt Turner mentions how big the school’s parking lot is, and how other students shouldn’t be worried about no parking spots being available.

“I think it’s something cool that we get to do,” Turner said. “I mean there are a lot of spots, it’s not [going to be] the end of the world if they clear off some spots for seniors. I think it’s nice they did this.” 

Turner’s spot, for example, was covered in different colors and stripes, each color representing each first responder. With America’s stars in the corner, the colors of the flag represented gray for corrections, yellow for dispatchers, red and white for nurses, blue and white for EMS, red for firefighters, blue for police and green for military.

“I always loved and appreciated the work that our first responders do for us, so I wanted to do something to give back to them and show them my support,” Turner said. “It took a while to do, but I wanted to make sure it was good and I wasn’t just going to do a half job on it. So it took some time, but I enjoyed it.”

Senior Ella Downey knew she wanted to do something that featured her favorite artist, Harry Styles. She decided to paint her background pink, then add one of her favorite Harry Styles quotes in the middle.

“It’s significant to me because it means I get a specific spot every day and I don’t have to worry about parking,” Downey said. “I love seeing Harry’s quote each day I go to school.”

The parking spots that gained the most attention on the following Monday were the Home Depot spots. Led by senior Lucas Tenrreiro, seniors Julian Rabago, Mikail Sadic, Aidan Ursey, Austin Parente, Clayton Yeoman, Patrick Riordan, and Jonah Jordan all claim the infamous spots, also helped by senior Dominic Caruso and juniors Aidan Gonzales and Luke Barsun in the painting process.

“The Home Depot is the name and brand of our friend group and has been a running inside joke for us for years, so a Home Depot logo represented us,” Tenrreriro said. “The idea for multiple spots that all come together to form one huge spot is something that brings us together and signifies our friend group being unified. Nobody has to park in a particular part of the logo, but we still park together.”

The group decided to take a different approach to the spots. While most seniors painted one that was important to themselves, they came up with a logo that was significant to their friend group. Tenrreiro said there were pros and cons of doing the simple, but well thought of group parking spots.

“The planning and execution was very difficult,” Tenrreiro said. “I originally designed some plans for each square to design them perfectly, and it worked for a couple of spots, but once mistakes started adding up we had to improvise. Overall, for all of the challenges and setbacks, I am very proud of how well it came out, and that we were able to accomplish this. I definitely think it made the friendship more connected. Projects that involve all of us and bring us together, like the parking spots, are the sort of things that define our friend group, and helps us be so close.”