Boothbay Region High School students and faculty celebrated Spirit Week the first and second weeks in November, during what is usually homecoming which was canceled due to COVID-19 health risks.
Student Body President Glory Blethen said everyone was upset to learn traditional activities like the bonfire, sports games, parade and dance could not happen. The only sports teams to compete this year were the field hockey team which ended a short season weeks ago and the cross country teams which missed out on state championships earlier this month due to rising COVID-19 cases around the state.
Knowing something had to be done to rally the student population, she and the student council worked on bringing some sort of fun to campus despite classes being split into two cohorts which do not cross paths socially or academically. “We decided to call it Spirit Week instead of homecoming because it wasn't based around sports, it was more based around school pride.”
Principal Tricia Campbell said while school looks very different right now, the students have been resilient and leading with positive attitudes and understanding. “I could not be more proud of the maturity, respect and support for others I have seen demonstrated by our students daily. The BRHS Student Council has led the way organizing and hosting School Spirit Week.
To include everyone and to ensure ample time to enjoy festivities, Blethen said Spirit Week was extended to two weeks so students could participate for four days instead of the two days per week they attend classes in person. Students had four dress up days – class color day (freshmen, green; sophomore, red; juniors, white; and seniors: black), Seahawk swag day, pajama day and sports day.
Points went to classes participating in activities, so the more people who dressed up, the more points their class would earn, said Blethen. “Each class decorated a door of their theme. They were judged and received points based on ranking. We also had students participate in the mock election to earn points.”
The favorite Spirit Week activity was the trivia questions which popped up in every class period two or three times, Blethen said. The questions were based on class subjects, random fun facts, guessing the name of a song and more, she added. “Both students and teachers really enjoyed this. It was something people looked forward to.”
Dean of Students and Athletic Director Allan Crocker said with art teacher Manon Lewis’s guidance, Blethen and the council did a tremendous job organizing and seeing activities through and ensuring all students could participate. “I thought Spirit Week went great … the students made the most of it and I think everyone really enjoyed it.”
Blethen said there was a definite sense of school spirit, positivity and a touch of competitiveness between classes which will need to continue with Winter Carnival week in January and February because juniors and seniors ended the event tied for first place.
“We are now brainstorming more ideas and fun (because) people want it to continue and … this is something we need right now during these times!”