Teach­ers creamed at Pep Rally

The Boyertown Area Times - - FRONT PAGE - By Ed­die Wag­ner and Guil­ianna McGin­niss Cub staff writ­ers

This year’s Mini-THON fundraiser kicked off with its usual pep rally on Fri­day, Feb. 10.

The event it­self, which will be held Feb. 24-25, prom­ises to be a lit­tle more mag­i­cal than usual — as the theme is Harry Pot­ter.

Events at the all-night dance will in­clude play­ing Quid­ditch and “find the Golden Snitch” ev­ery hour.

Stu­dent Coun­cil con­sid­ered five ideas, in­clud­ing Lilo and Stitch, Dr. Suess and Toy Story, but the Hog­warts hero was the clear win­ner, Stu­dent Coun­cil Pres­i­dent Ce­clia Howald said.

“It got the most votes out of the other four,” she said

This year’s goal is to raise $45,000, stu­dent coun­cil rep­re­sen­ta­tives an­nounced at the pep rally.

The high­light of the pep rally was stu­dent coun­cil mem­bers throw­ing pies in the faces of teach­ers who raised money the week be­fore. Band Di­rec­tor Mr. Brian Lang­don was the teacher who raised the most money. Math Teacher Mr. Josh Turner and Vice Prin­ci­pal Mr. An­drew Maoury tied for sec­ond.

The speaker at the rally was Chris Kaag, founder of the IAM Able Foun­da­tion, which has the goal of pro­vid­ing ac­tive life­styles for in­di­vid­u­als with dis­abil­i­ties.

Kaag, in a wheel chair, showed off the new hand cy­cle his foun­da­tion will give to young Four Di­a­monds can­cer pa­tient, Eden Gresh, thanks to a coin stall led by stu­dent coun­cil this fall.

Kaag told the crowd that dur­ing high school he was “a lazy fatty” who played video games and was not re­ally mo­ti­vated in sports or school.

At 17, he went into the Marine Corps, which taught him dis­ci­pline and turned him into an ac­tive per­son, play­ing both rugby and foot­ball for Marines. He had dreams of be­com­ing a drill sergeant, but they were cut short in 1997 when he was di­ag­nosed with a rare ge­netic neuro-de­gen­er­a­tive con­di­tion called Adreno­myeloneu­ropa­thy, spurred on by a duty-re­lated con­cus­sion. The dis­ease forced him to med­i­cally re­tire from the Marine Corps.

He em­pha­sized to stu­dents the im­por­tance of not tak­ing their health for granted.

“I think now about how I hated run­ning,” he said. “Now, I would give any­thing to be able to run again.”

Stu­dent Coun­cil Ad­vi­sor and his­tory teacher Mr. Jeff Kus­niez also spoke at the as­sem­bly. He ex­plained how Kaag stepped in to speak at the last minute when the mother of Gresh had to back out she had a re­lapse and had to re­turn to the hos­pi­tal.

“Ev­ery­thing’s fine, they want you to know ev­ery­thing is fine…” Mr. Kus­niez re­as­sured ev­ery­one. He then went on to say how the fam­ily’s sit­u­a­tion re­minds us what Mini-THON is all about.

Mini-THON repli­cates the Penn State THON on a smaller scale. In the past year, 100 schools hosted events, rais­ing more than $2 mil­lion for the Four Di­a­monds Fund, which as­sists chil­dren treated for can­cer at Penn State Her­shey Chil­dren’s Hos­pi­tal and their fam­i­lies. The fund also sup­ports re­search.

BASH stu­dents and staff raised more than $40,000 last year for the Four Di­a­monds Fund. . which brought the ac­cu­mu­lat­ing to­tal over the past four years to a to­tal of $148,686, mak­ing. BASH the high­est earner in Berks County and one of the high­est earn­ers in the state.

This year’s Mini-THON com­mit­tee chair is Se­nior Sarah McCaf­ferty.

“Sarah’s do­ing a great job of man­ag­ing with school. It’s al­most like a job,” Howald said. “There’s a lot that goes into it.”

McCaf­ferty’s job as Mini Thon Chair is to or­ga­nize and run meet­ings, while en­sur­ing all com­mit­tees are on track and work­ing to­gether.

“I also cover tasks that don’t re­ally fall into any com­mit­tee and work with reg­is­tra­tion,” McCaf­ferty said. “I have a lot of ex­pe­ri­ence with Four Di­a­monds Fund, so I want to share what I’ve learned with oth­ers in stu­dent coun­cil.”

McCaf­ferty and other stu­dent coun­cil mem­bers are putting in a lot of work af­ter school to en­sure the night is a suc­cess.

“To prep for the event we’re cur­rently mak­ing a ton of Harry Pot­ter themed dec­o­ra­tions, fi­nal­iz­ing ac­tiv­i­ties, and gath­er­ing ma­te­ri­als for them,” McCaf­ferty said. “[We’re also] cre­at­ing the line dance, a dance we do hourly to wake us up; so­lic­it­ing do­na­tions from busi­nesses; or­ga­niz­ing chap­er­ones, and get­ting stu­dents to reg­is­ter.”

Last year, McCaf­ferty and other chairs vis­ited Penn State Her­shey Med­i­cal Cen­ter with Mr. Kus­niez. They met with Four Di­a­monds rep­re­sen­ta­tives, who gave them a tour of the hos­pi­tal. McCaf­ferty said it was an in­cred­i­ble ex­pe­ri­ence.

“Four Di­a­monds Fund is so spe­cial be­cause not only does it com­pletely elim­i­nate the fi­nan­cial bur­den of pe­di­atric can­cer for fam­i­lies, but it does ab­so­lutely ev­ery­thing pos­si­ble … with the emo­tional and psy­cho­log­i­cal ef­fects as well.”


Dur­ing the high school’s pep rally on Fri­day, Feb. 10, Mr. Brian Lang­don gets a pie in the face for com­ing in 1st place and col­lect­ing the most money.


Mr. Maoury and Mr. Turner tied for sec­ond place, both get­ting pies in the face.


BASH stu­dents com­pete in the toi­let pa­per toss to see who can get the most toi­let pa­per in the bucket.

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