The Big Sandy Mountaineer -

Halloween festivies at the Schools


November 9, 2022

FE Miley Elementary students enjoyed a special Halloween treat this year thanks to the High School Student Council, the National Honor Society, and the initiative of Jessie Jaramillo (the art teacher and class sponsor). Halloween at FE Miley is always a big day, with both the students and teachers showing up dressed in costume, class parties planned for the afternoon, and concluding with the parade from the elementary school to the nursing home for trick-or-treating. This year, an addition of hay rides and a carnival made a special day even more so.

The newly added activities began at 9 AM with a hay ride. School board member, Mr. Weaver, brought a tractor and flatbed of straw to the elementary school for the ride through town, stopping briefly at The Grocery Store and the Senior Center for treats. Carla Courtnage was at the Senior Center for the event. She explained, "We're always excited to see the young ones. We're thrilled at see little kids just walking through. And it brings us closer together." The center was buzzing that morning with an extra large crowd of coffee goers, which she attributed to the kids visiting. Across the street at The Grocery Store, students were treated to hot apple cider and muffins. Ronnie Simpson, who was dressed as one of the Men in Black, explained why The Grocery Store sees these sorts of events as particularly important: "We try to help out with all projects in the community. And I think if each person, no matter who it is, helps out just a little bit, we can make it great." Ronnie explained that his favorite parts of the morning's visit from the school: "The costumes and the kids' happy faces. I mean, the costumes are awesome."

I spoke with Dan Schrock about the day's activities as students were starting to arrive downtown. He emphasized the importance of community support. "We couldn't do what we're able to do in our school and in the community without the community support and encouragement. I'm very appreciative of the efforts that others have made with respect to making Halloween special for our kids, including our School Board Member Mr. Weaver bringing his tractor trailer and straw down for hay rides, and Deb at the store, Mrs Courtnage working with the senior citizens. They're making this a community event as opposed to just a school event."

Throughout the afternoon, the Student Council and National Honor Society worked at the elementary school putting on a carnival for the various grades. The event was overseen by high school kids, and the various games were run by the 6th grade class. Rusty Gasvoda was running a game when I asked him about the carnival "It's just a little carnival for all the kids to come to and just have fun, get out of class, eat some candy. Sorta what Halloween is for."

Mrs. Worrall, the 6th grade teacher, praised her students' efforts in manning the carnival games: "They're doing good. They're being great helpers, making sure their station is running well. They're super excited about doing this, and it's just been a fun day."

Marquelle Houle, a 6th grader who was running a bean bag toss game at the carnival described the afternoon: "I find it kind of fun because sometimes we cheat when the kids throw it towards us, and we'd catch it. Pop it in the hole for them." She explained that helping the younger kids and having fun in the process was the highlight of the day for her. The same sentiment was echoed by nearly every student I spoke with at the event. She also explained that her favorite part of the day was the hay ride, though she wished it had been longer.

Halloween at FE Miley concluded with the parade from the Elementary School to the Medical Center, where staff and residents were dressed in various themed costumes and handing out candy.

Mr. Schrock praised and credited those responsible for this year's extra special Halloween celebration: "I have to give Miss J a lot of credit for that. She's our student council advisor and our Art teacher. She's wonderful. She spearheaded the carnival and having her National Honor Society and student council members willingly and purposely give back to the younger students. Much like they had the older students that gave back to them when they were in elementary school. So it's kind of coming full circle and you know, to empower our kids and to appreciate their efforts and to turn them loose in a positive way, it's a win-win for everybody involved. We're just really proud of what we're able to do for the community, to give back, and to accept the community support as well."


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