The Rocket Flame

Dancing Through the Decades

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Dancing Through the Decades

President of Student Council, Sarah Kimmel (12) paints a sign for spirit week.

President of Student Council, Sarah Kimmel (12) paints a sign for spirit week.

President of Student Council, Sarah Kimmel (12) paints a sign for spirit week.

President of Student Council, Sarah Kimmel (12) paints a sign for spirit week.

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Homecoming has been a tradition at James Buchanan High School for many years. For alumni, it’s a time to reminisce. The student body sees it as a time for dancing and pep rallies; however, for a small group of students it’s the busiest time of the year. The Student Council takes on a hefty workload behind the scenes to make sure this grand event runs smoothly. 

“We had a work day right after school ended last year to plan the dance,” said Bella Shupp (11), “We laid out all the details.” 

This year, Homecoming is much earlier than previous years. This put extra pressure on Student Council members to have everything ready on time. Students usually come to the dance and see the decorations, but don’t realize how much work and planning it requires. They had to book the DJ, make decorations, design t-shirts, and plan the pep rally. 

“We put up flyers and made a bulletin board to help spread the word to get participation,” said Timothy Helman (10). 

The theme is “Dancing Through the Decades.” To promote the theme, the bulletin board was decorated with records and retro fonts. For Spirit Week, each day was a different decade starting with the 50s and ending with the 90s. 

“We chose this theme because it is easy for people to participate,” said Helman.

Many people within the school own Converses, scrunchies, and many other things that were popular fashion trends in past decades. This makes it easy to show school spirit and participate throughout the week. The Student Council also wanted to boost school spirit even more; they plan to do this through the pep rally with fun games and songs. 

“The Homecoming candidates will be singing karaoke,” said Shupp, they will also be doing a fashion show with toilet paper.” 

The Homecoming King candidates this year are: Nick Alfree (12), Brady Bigler (12), Dean King (12), Grant Souder (12), and Jacob Troupe (12). The Homecoming Queen candidates are: Kaitlyn Ebersole (12), Lily Faust (12), Ella Heckman (12), Reilly Heinbaugh (12) and Hannah Kimmel (12). 

“All the seniors nominated candidates,” said Shupp. “Then the whole school is allowed to vote for the final King and Queen.”

Typically the football game is on a Friday night and the dance takes place the next day on a Saturday night, but this year the game and dance are all in the same day. Saturday at 1 PM the game starts. At halftime the King and Queen will be announced, then at 7 PM the dance begins. 

“I just hope that everyone has fun at Homecoming. It’s a time to relax and not worry about school,” said Shupp.  

At the end of last school year, members of Student Council congregated together to plan out next year’s Homecoming. Since then, Student Council has been implementing their ideas that were written down on paper into reality. 

 

A Winter Wonderland

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A Winter Wonderland

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On Saturday, Feb. 9 James Buchanan hosted their annual Winter Dance from 7 to 10 p.m. Student Council is the organization responsible for the event, they also organize and plan all the other dances throughout the year. This year, they combined the Winter Dance and the Valentine’s Day Dance with a theme of Winter Wonderland.

“My favorite part about the dance is the theme,” said Taylor Piper (10).

With the theme being Winter Wonderland, Student Council hung light decorations and backdrops with a Winter theme, They also incorporated Valentine’s Day into it as well, using roses and hearts decorations.

“I think Student Council enjoys having fun and being together while they’re working together,” said Mrs. Ann Fitz (Faculty).

Student Council starts preparing for the dance early that morning at 9 a.m. until the students start crowding in that night.

With Student Council being responsible for the dance, it makes them accountable for things like the decorations, selling tickets, the DJ, and making sure there is student participation

“It gives the student body a wholesome opportunity to be together and have fun outside of school hours,” says Fitz.

SInging, Taylor Piper (10), Brianna Cole (10), and Breanna Dukehart (11) lead the crowd

While the participation isn’t as teeming with students like Homecoming or Prom, it is a dance for students to come and enjoy the night together.

The dance started at 7 p.m. and as the doors opened, students created a very prolonged line to enter the cafeteria, where the dance occurred. After a little while, all of the students in various grades were found dancing together in the middle of the floor.

The DJ also included himself in the night with interacting with the students. He picked out a handful of kids and gave them props to play a little game while dancing with everyone. Continuously talking to the student body trying to get them more rowdied up.

While dancing, students gather for a quick picture.

Many students seemed to enjoy the dance and all the people in it. It was a night for everyone to get dressed up and come together for an event.

Cans Donated, Toys Collected

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Cans Donated, Toys Collected

Encouraging fellow classmates, Claire Kriner (11) and Timothy Helman (9) get excited for the holiday season.

Encouraging fellow classmates, Claire Kriner (11) and Timothy Helman (9) get excited for the holiday season.

Encouraging fellow classmates, Claire Kriner (11) and Timothy Helman (9) get excited for the holiday season.

Encouraging fellow classmates, Claire Kriner (11) and Timothy Helman (9) get excited for the holiday season.

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The holidays are thought to be a time with big family dinners, buying and receiving gifts, and getting a little extra money added to your paycheck. The streets are filled with string lights and cheer all throughout the final months of the year. This might be your view of this season, but less fortunate families may not see it the exact same way. They might see it as the more stressful time of year and may find it difficult to make ends meet. Have you ever thought about how you could bring holiday joy to these families’ lives?

The James Buchanan student body has been outwardly striving to help families in need during this Christmas season. These attempts have included food drives with canned goods and toy collections. Certain students feel that, by doing these things, it not only helps other people, but it can also join everyone together as a school.

“When we help each other out, it just connects our school more closely together…” said Claire Kriner (11).

Student Council began the canned food and toy collection on Nov. 28 and is continuing it throughout the month of December. Boxes wrapped in festive wrapping paper were placed inside of classrooms to collect these items.

A donation box is placed inside of Miss May’s (Faculty) homeroom in preparation of the food and toy drive.

“We get donations from businesses sometimes, but we want to encourage lots of your classmates to donate food so we can have enough food for people,” said Meredith Iverson (10), “because it benefits people in this school district.”

In order to motivate students to donate items, Student Council has come up with an idea that allows homerooms to compete for points. Getting points depends on how many and what kinds of objects each homeroom provides for less fortunate families. The homeroom that receives the most points wins the competition.

Outside of the art room, Lizzie Pittman (12) contributes items to her homeroom’s donation box.

“It’s a way that our school can give items to families in need that might not have everything.” said Kriner.

Members of the student body feel it is a moral obligation for them to make Christmas a happier time for other people who may struggle during the holidays. They also want to encourage others to realize that Christmas is not just about receiving gifts.

“I just want to get a stronger sense of positivity because I know that not many people in our school think about this stuff,” said Bella Shupp (10), “They don’t think about people that are struggling, so I think this will really help everyone in the school see that Christmas is about more than just getting stuff for yourself.”

During the holiday season this year, James Buchanan has been making efforts to focus less on themselves and more so on families that may struggle in providing necessary items or affording gifts for their children. Students believe that they can make a positive change in the community if they work together as a school.

A Spook-tacular Day

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A Spook-tacular Day

Getting into the Halloween spirit, Jacob Troupe (11), Nick Alfree (11), Patrick Hicks (11), Zach Slodysko (11), Dylan Poffenberger (11), and Mason Younker (11) dress up as the band KISS.

Getting into the Halloween spirit, Jacob Troupe (11), Nick Alfree (11), Patrick Hicks (11), Zach Slodysko (11), Dylan Poffenberger (11), and Mason Younker (11) dress up as the band KISS.

Getting into the Halloween spirit, Jacob Troupe (11), Nick Alfree (11), Patrick Hicks (11), Zach Slodysko (11), Dylan Poffenberger (11), and Mason Younker (11) dress up as the band KISS.

Getting into the Halloween spirit, Jacob Troupe (11), Nick Alfree (11), Patrick Hicks (11), Zach Slodysko (11), Dylan Poffenberger (11), and Mason Younker (11) dress up as the band KISS.

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October is a season full of carving pumpkins, dressing up, and lots of sweets. Student Council decided to celebrate this season by hosting a pumpkin-decorating contest, costume contest, and senior trick-or-treating.

Every year Student Council hosts a pumpkin-decorating contest. The contest allowed homerooms to show off their creative side by painting pumpkins. The pumpkins are judged by teachers who come down and decide which pumpkin is the best.

“I enjoyed being a judge for the contest,” said Hillwig. “It’s cool to see how creative the students can be.”

Homeroom 301 (Art) won the contest with their Oscar the Grouch-themed pumpkin. The homeroom was rewarded with a breakfast provided by Student Council. The breakfast includes bagels, doughnuts, and fruit.

The Art Homeroom Oscar the Grouch Pumpkin

“All the pumpkins were so unique,” said Claire Kriner (11). “I never would have thought to paint a pumpkin like they were.”

At the end of the day, Student Council members will dress up in Halloween costumes and deliver the pumpkins to local nursing homes, including Shook Home and Menno Haven.

“My favorite part of the pumpkin-decorating is visiting with the elderly and seeing how happy their reactions are,” said Kriner.

The next event Student Council planned was the costume contest. The costume contest lets students dress up as something of their choosing. The categories were: Most Creative, Best Couple, Best Group, Scariest, and the Most Funny. Student Council then chooses a random selection of teachers to judge the contest. The pumpkins this year were judged by Troy Hillwig (Faculty) and De-bra Blair (Faculty).

“The judging was tough,” said Hillwig. “There were some great costumes like Bonnie and Clyde and Raining Men.”

Dressing up as Bonnie and Clyde, Jackie Wagaman (12) and Aaron Stone (12) pose for a picture.

The final event to wrap the Halloween festivities up was senior Trick-or-Treating. The event enables seniors to dress up in costumes and go around to teachers who give out candy. Not only do the students dress up, but the teachers participate as well to get into the Halloween spirit.

Dressing up as Captain America Brian Stull (Faculty) participates in Senior Trick-or-Treating.

“My favorite thing is senior Trick-or-Treating because students are acting like they are younger again,” said Lynn Fleury-Adamek (Faculty).

From dressing up to getting lots of sweets, the day was filled with Halloween fun for students and faculty to enjoy.

A Disney Dance

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A Disney Dance

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Canning Out Hunger for The Holidays

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Canning Out Hunger for The Holidays

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During the holiday season, giving is a common theme. This is especially important to James Buchanan High School during their annual food drive.

 

Every year during the month of December, the James Buchanan High School Student Council holds a food drive, placing a holiday-wrapped box in each homeroom for students to fill with donations.

 

“The food drive is a way for us to give back to families in need and students in our school district by providing them with food and gifts,”  said Claire Kriner (10) one of the three co-chairs of the drive, “It’s been a tradition for many years.”

 

The food drive this year was organized by Hannah Kimmel (10), Claire Kriner (10), and Sarah Kimmel (10).  

 

“This is our first year on Executive Council and we’ve never done anything like this before,” said co-chair Hannah Kimmel. “ It is [the food drive] one of the hardest things to plan all year.”

Participation was a worry this year but the outlook for donation volume is looking bright.

 

“Last year plenty of food was brought in to feed all 32 families in need in the school district,” said Kriner.

 

To increase the competition and participation, Student Council has included a scavenger hunt aspect to the food drive.

 

“We have a scavenger hunt to bring in more of certain types of food,” explained Hannah Kimmel.

 

Student Council also added a reward for the homeroom that earn the most points. Homerooms gain points by bringing in different items that are worth a varying points based on the type of food.

 

“Whoever has the most points from the scavenger hunt gets a breakfast from Student Council,” said Kimmel.

 

For the scavenger hunt, items that have a higher-point reward are foods that are higher in demand for the holidays, such as canned meats and boxed meals .

 

Items that StuCo recommends bringing in would be non-perishable food items and good quality foods.

 

“When people bring food in, we just want them to be sure they are giving food they would want to eat themselves,” said Hannah Kimmel.

 

Foods that Student Council recommends bringing in would be boxed brownies, beans, peaches, and any canned- or preserved-meat products.

 

The food drive will run through the month of December, ending on Dec. 20 just in time to provide the families in need with food for the holidays.

Stay In The Flow With StuCo

Hurricane Harvey, Homecoming & Halloween: How student council is making it happen

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Stay In The Flow With StuCo

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James Buchanan’s biggest events this  autumn all happen thanks to our Student Council organization, who have maximized their community impact despite school being in session only a little over a month.

Student Council Members gather around the supplies they collected to aid in the Hurricane Harvey relief.happen thanks to our Student Council organization, who have maximized their community impact despite school being in session only a little over a month.

Student Council members created this year’s Homecoming theme, Hollywood, and they are in full preparation mode and plan on packing tons of glitz and glam into the screen-worthy weekend.

“Expect a red carpet entrance at the dance,” said Shaelyn kaiser, 11,  who along with Victoria Hutchinson, 11,  and Kristin Embly, 11,  are the chairs of the dance this year.

The Homecoming week kicks off with different themed spirit days, the pep rally on Friday, the Homecoming parade and the game to follow.

“We’ve planned some fun games and performances for it (the pep rally)” Hutchinson said. The trio also revealed to expect some emceeing from Kaiser and fellow student Council member Bergen Stevens,11.

 

Other than putting all their effort into Homecoming preparations, Student Council has also been helping in the Hurricane Harvey relief.

 

“We put a box in the office to bring food, water, clothes and supplies in,”  StuCo president Amber Brindle, 12, said.

They’ve been collecting more than supplies but also money through a hat day they sponsored to raise money for the Red Cross relief effort.

“We ended up taking three carloads down to the drop-off station and helped organize it,” Brindle said.

On top of organizing Homecoming and assisting in the hurricane efforts, Student Council also is leaping into fall with the start of Halloween festivities.  

They plan to include the annual pumpkin-decorating contest and costume-judging around Halloween.

Student Council spends all year drawing up new ideas and plans for exciting activities and there’s no doubt this year they will continue to provide memorable events for the school.

 

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