The casino-themed homecoming dance was a major accomplishment for the leadership class, as a large portion of the student body was happy with the choices made with regards to activities, food and music. “I was so shocked that they all loved it,” Leadership teacher Audra Greuel said. “When you’re going to have 1500 teenagers at a dance, it’s hard to get everyone on the same page of liking stuff, but we had kids, even for the entire next week, randomly coming up to Mrs. Moran and I and saying ‘thank you so much for putting on such a great event.’ We received all positive feedback, which is pretty shocking, but I kind of knew it was going really well because I was having a lot of fun at the event myself, so it was really exciting.” (Photo provided by: PTSA)
The casino-themed homecoming dance was a major accomplishment for the leadership class, as a large portion of the student body was happy with the choices made with regards to activities, food and music. “I was so shocked that they all loved it,” Leadership teacher Audra Greuel said. “When you’re going to have 1500 teenagers at a dance, it’s hard to get everyone on the same page of liking stuff, but we had kids, even for the entire next week, randomly coming up to Mrs. Moran and I and saying ‘thank you so much for putting on such a great event.’ We received all positive feedback, which is pretty shocking, but I kind of knew it was going really well because I was having a lot of fun at the event myself, so it was really exciting.”

Photo provided by: PTSA

Welcome to the Fabulous Lake Brantley: the dance

November 23, 2021

The dance is arguably one of the most important aspects to homecoming week for students, as it is a time to get dressed up and hang out with peers. In years prior, homecoming had been earlier in the school year and inside the gym, but to provide a more spacious and comfortable environment, the festivities were pushed to the first week in November and held outside. 

The 2021 Homecoming Dance featured a number of entertaining opportunities, a popular choice being the dance floor outside of Building 5 and the cafeteria. Many were involved in the preparation stage as well as the actual decorating phase to create a night students would remember. (Photo provided by: PTSA)

This year’s homecoming theme, ‘Fabulous Lake Brantley,’ was based off of a night spent at Las Vegas casinos. The dance included a live DJ with a large dance floor, tables set up with traditional casino games like blackjack and poker, as well as food catered from Papa Diesel’s Barbeque food truck.

“This year it looked a little different, but we were happy because last year we didn’t get to have anything, so we were excited to plan whatever it was going to look like,” Leadership teacher Audra Greuel said. “We knew from the district that we were going to have it outside and obviously we have a really nice space and a nice campus, so we just started brainstorming and looking at our vendors and getting a huge dance floor. We went with our DJ company that we’ve done before. The new thing really was Papa Diesel’s, which we just know Diesel as a coach, so we invited him to come and then the newest, biggest surprise were the casino tables and so I was really excited for that. We had to go through hoops to get it approved by the district and then we were able to.”

Seniors Kade Sowers, Sebastian Kee and Miles Butterfield take advantage of the gambling tables provided as entertainment during the Homecoming dance on Nov. 6. Each table featured a different casino card game to match the Fabulous Lake Brantley theme. (Photo provided by: Lynn Moran-Peebles)

The Leadership students heavily contribute to the successes of the homecoming dance, as they are in charge of creating an event that they believe the student body will enjoy and remember.

“The role that leadership has in homecoming is major,” student body treasurer Kaylee Rios said. “Leadership came up with the theme of the dance, ordered decor and entertainment, set up the dance, assembled the decor and promoted ticket sales.”

The student body was also very happy with the vast amount of activities offered at the dance, as it offered versatility in things to do throughout the night.

“I liked the game tables because I feel like it fit the theme and that it was a unique thing for this year’s dance,” junior Kelsey Paldin said. “Freshman year felt like less planning went into it and it felt very scattered, but this year, there were a lot more people and everybody was participating more than my freshman year.”

Because the dance was further along in the school year, the weather was significantly colder than most years. The temperature was in the low 50s throughout the night, and a cold front brought a lot of rain the day prior, which caused concern about whether the dance would be cancelled.

“This year’s dance was outside, which meant we would have little to no control over the weather,” Rios said. “The night of the dance it turned out to be a bit colder than we anticipated, however we learned from this and will take this in consideration for future dances and plan for all types of weather.”

In addition to the work that Greuel put in to make the night run smoothly and without issues, Leadership and Interior Design teacher Lynn Moran-Peebles also played a crucial role in creating an event to this caliber, as the teachers have worked for months to ensure students had a good time.

“Mrs. Moran and I worked together,” Greuel said. “She does a lot of the design elements because she’s the interior design teacher, so the whole entire vision of the decor is 100 percent her. We construct everything with our kids, the leadership students, but she basically does all of the decor and we work together to do the layout of the dance and get all of the chaperones in place. During the dance, we’re here from 8 AM until around 1 AM that next day running the whole thing and setting up, so my main role is making sure that all of the kids are behaving, that vendors are happy and that everything runs smoothly during the dance.”

Because of the amount of hard work that went into the homecoming dance, the teachers have received large amounts of appreciation from the student body.

“I honestly loved every aspect of it and I think that this year was the first year that we had ever truly received 100 percent positive feedback,” Greuel said. “It felt really good to be able to put on an event that kids really enjoyed and had fun at. They loved it, so we’d love to do something similar to this for future homecomings.”

Homecoming King and Queen

After+campaigning+for+weeks%2C+through+means+such+as+social+media+posts+and+on-campus+decorations+imploring+students+to+vote+for+them%2C+Sowers+and+Perkins+%28along+with+the+rest+of+the+student+body%29+received+the+news+that+they+had+been+elected+at+the+Homecoming+dance+on+Saturday%2C+Nov.+6.++%E2%80%9CBeing+homecoming+queen+means+a+lot+to+me+because+it+shows+how+much+my+peers+care+for+me+and+I+feel+so+honored+to+be+chosen+out+of+everyone+in+my+class+to+fill+those+shoes%2C%E2%80%9D+Perkins+said.+

Photo provided by: LM Photography

After campaigning for weeks, through means such as social media posts and on-campus decorations imploring students to vote for them, Sowers and Perkins (along with the rest of the student body) received the news that they had been elected at the Homecoming dance on Saturday, Nov. 6. “Being homecoming queen means a lot to me because it shows how much my peers care for me and I feel so honored to be chosen out of everyone in my class to fill those shoes,” Perkins said.

Amidst the many exciting facets of Homecoming week, there is one event that engages the student body more than any other. The campaign for and eventual election of Homecoming King and Queen allows candidates to get to know and interact with their peers in a unique way, in hopes of earning their vote. This year, the titles went to seniors Kade Sowers and Sarah Perkins.

Both Sowers and Perkins have made their presence known to the school. Sowers is a member of leadership and band, as well as an anchor on the morning announcements produced by TV Production classes, and Perkins is a competitive and varsity cheerleader. Through their interaction with their peers and contributions to the school, they were able to receive enough votes for their titles.

“I feel really good about being Homecoming King,” Sowers said. “The whole process was really exciting, and I’m really glad to have been part of the experience.”

Traditionally, the King and Queen’s crowning ceremony takes place before the Homecoming football game. However, due to the stormy weather conditions that reigned over this year’s game, the ceremony was moved to take place at the dance itself, and then followed up with an official coronation at the Boys Varsity Soccer Game on Wednesday, Nov. 10.

During the dance, after some time of dancing, eating, and bonding with their friends, students gathered to hear the results of the Homecoming Court election. With the rest of the court lined up at the front of the crowd, Brian Shafer addressed the students before proclaiming Sowers and Perkins as the King and Queen of the court. 

“I was speechless,” Perkins said. “It meant so much to me to win. I never thought I would, so being in that moment and hearing my name, watching my friends cheer for me was such an amazing experience.” 

After being crowned, Sowers and Perkins get to hold their position proudly throughout the rest of their time in high school.

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