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Ilion High School Customs & Traditions
Customs and traditions played an important part in the Ilion High School. Every year certain events occurred, throughout the term, which were remembered for many years. Among these are -- Homecoming Weekend, Senior Christmas Ball, Parents' Night at the last basketball game, Senior Class Day, the Junior Prom, and "PaintNight"..
Pages on all the traditions will be available in the navigation bar at the top of this page. Updated August 22, 2014
The Alma Mater lyrics were written by Edna Brand McGowan, Class of 1905. Edna's words, set to the tune of Cornell's "Far Above Cayuga's Waters", were selected as the winning entry in a contest held to determine the lyrics.
The Blue Room Song
This little diddy was popular at least as far back as the 1950s. Watch Bill Pickett IHS 1952 perform The Blue Room.
Nickname: Golden Bombers
The Ilion Central School's nickname of the "Golden Bomber" can be traced back to the year 1935. A reporter from the Utica OBSERVER-DISPATCH by the name of William Malloy used the reference in his write-ups of the 1935 football squad. In that year, the Ilion team was outfitted in beautiful gold uniforms. The name seemed to stick, and since that time has become the nickname associated with our school in all of our activities.
Joe Bemis provided this bit of Ilion history to Ilion's Principal in 1977 and it was reported in the Utica Observer Dispatch. - October 27, 1977 - The Utica Observer - The Utica Observer - 4790.pdf
"Ilion's Golden Bombers supposedly adopted their nickname due to an Observer Dispatch reporter who covered them when Ilion was the champion of the entire central New York area around 1925. 'One of the sports reporters said in a story that Ilion had 'bombed' its opponents during the season.' says Ilion principal Henry J Bartosik."
"It got to the point where everyone would say before a game. 'My gosh', we will bomb them.' and the name came into common use. The color 'Golden' was added because our school colors are gold and brown" Bartosik said. Ralph Bemis who was a coach back then is responsible for the information.
School Seal and Coat of Arms
Mascot: Bomber Bear
Athletic Awards: Joe Bemis Football Award
Athletic Awards: The Lever Cup
Senior Dress Down Day
You are welcome to contribute information, photographs, personal stories, tradition histories, etc., for publication on this website. For Webpage updates, contact: Aileen Carney Sweeney