Blue-and-white lawn signs celebrating Riverhead High School’s seniors are making a return this year for the Class of 2021.

After the program’s wildly popular launch last year, the Riverhead High School Parent Teacher Student Organization is teaming up once again with Fisher Signs and Shirts to produce the lawn signs for graduating seniors.

The signs will feature either a student’s name or a generic “Congratulations” message for the Class of 2021. “The kids love it, because it just shows that there’s a senior living there and that we’re proud of them,” said Mary Maki, president of the Riverhead High School PTSO.

Maki, whose twin sons are seniors this year, says the signs can help lift students’ spirits during a year full of challenges and disappointments.

“They haven’t been together with their friends in class, all of them, at all this year,” Maki said. “Not even once. This is one way to show that we support them.”

Signs may be purchased on the Fisher Signs and Shirts website at $20 for a sign customized with a senior’s name, $10 for a generic sign, or $10 for a sign that will be donated to a graduating senior.

In addition to bringing back the lawn signs, the PTSO is also fundraising toward an enormous class banner to be hung on the front of the high school building. Similar to last year’s banner, it will feature the photo and name of every member of the senior class.

“It got such a wonderful response from the students [last year],” Maki said. “We’re excited to do it again. The students absolutely love it.”

The PTSO is currently halfway to its fundraising goal for the class banner. Donations can be made 

Lawn sign purchases also include the option of a $5 donation to the class banner.

Fisher Signs and Shirts is providing the banner at cost and providing a steep discount for the lawn signs. “It’s a real community effort,” said owner Ron Fisher, who is himself a graduate of RHS. “It’s such a feel-good program.”

The effort to create lawn signs for Riverhead’s graduating class first launched last spring, after coronavirus restrictions first shut down local schools and canceled most senior activities through the rest of the school year.

Jennifer Mato, center, coordinated the lawn sign for seniors effort. Photo: Peter Blasl

The program was wildly popular last year, and parents hope for a similar show of support.

Parents and community members purchased more than 600 lawn signs last spring, and they quickly became ubiquitous around the streets of Riverhead. “There wasn’t a neighborhood we drove through last year that didn’t have a sign,” Fisher said.

He added that he was pleasantly surprised at how many members of the community donated to the effort, even if they didn’t currently have a senior at the high school.

“I thought people would buy one for their kid and donate a second for another student,” he said. “But 60 percent of the sales were straight up donations from the community.

“Riverhad really steps up to support their own,” he added.

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Katie, winner of the 2016 James Murphy Cub Reporter of the Year award from the L.I. Press Club, is a co-publisher of RiverheadLOCAL. A Riverhead native, she is a 2014 graduate of Stony Brook University. Email Katie