The Bear Facts ... April 1, 2006

Good morning! I'm Seth Rogers!

I'm Joe Rahm!

And I'm Jeff Lappe! Welcome to a special edition of the "Bear Facts", where we're celebrating Gala 2006 here at Bishop Garrigan High School.

Gala has been a tradition at Garrigan since 1990. It's grown to become by far the school's biggest fundraiser, as well as one of the biggest social events in the area. For the past decade Gala has averaged around $200,000 in income each year, and we're hoping to do at least that well this year. This year's theme is "Gala on the Riviera, and for the past week students and adult volunteers have been working hard to transform the Garrigan gym into a luxury ballroom. We know it should be a beautiful evening for everyone in attendance.

One of the biggest parts of Gala is the food. It begins with hors d'oeuvres trays featuring pancetta and leek tarts, raspberry and brie puffs with rosemary, and croque monsieurs (savory little French sandwiches). After that guests will sit down to enjoy leek and saffron soup with sautéed shrimp as well as a bistro salad. The main course is pork and chicken roulade with prosciutto and green peppercorns, and on the side they'll have potato paeve ratatouille.  Finally there's a decadent dessert featuring caramel mousse profiteroles with chocolate mousse towers and raspberries. The guests will also enjoy table wine and after dinner coffee.

Gala offers hundreds of opportunities for guests to part with their money. The focal point is the live auction. Among the most valuable items being auctioned this year are a gun safe, a whole processed beef, a corner desk from Snap-On Tools, and a gold and ruby ring valued at $2,300. In addition to the live auction, there's dozens and dozens of silent auction items, a chest of chance, and assorted raffles with prizes including a four-wheeler, a boat, and a new car.

Gala couldn't happen each year without volunteers. Tonight forty-four students are volunteering their time as waiters and valet parking attendants. Earlier in the week about twenty student artists helped design and put up the decorations. There are also hundreds of adults who helped out-not just for Gala itself, but also at dozens of gift-gathering parties throughout the year. We'd like to thank everyone who has worked to make Gala the wonderful event it is.

Last week several Garrigan girls went to Des Moines for the state health occupations conference. Garrigan's HOSA chapter did extremely well at state. Anna Bormann finished first in Clinical Specialty and second in Extemporaneous Speaking. Kayla Reding was first in Physical Therapy, and Kayla Reding was second statewide in Medical Photography and Health Education. Jenni Miller was third in Nutrition, and Kathy Kohlhaas finished third in Extemporaneous Writing and sixth in Concepts in Health Care. Liz Erdman was second in Health Care Issues, fifth in Human Growth and Development, and sixth in Extemporaneous Writing. 

In addition to the individual winners, the team of Kayla Reding, Kathy Kohlhaas, Sarah Funk, and Jenni Miller finished fifth statewide in Creative Problem Solving. All of the girls who placed in HOSA advance to the national Health Occupations competition, which will be held this summer in Anaheim. Congratulations to the HOSA team and to Coach Jeanne Wunder.

Last Saturday four members of the Golden Bear quiz bowl team went to their last tournament of the year. They traveled down to Boone where they finished in the "Elite Eight" over all. Team members included Jeff Lappe, Alex Elbert, Chris Scobba, and D.J. Thompson. There is one more event in the quiz bowl season, the spring Knowledge Master that will take place next month.

Just over a week ago Ecology students Alex Elbert, Emily Funk, Chris Loebach, Spenser Rahm, and Liz Mayer traveled to Cherokee for the Envirothon contest, where they tested their knowledge of aquatics, forestry, soils, and wildlife. Bishop Garrigan placed second at the regional competition and 48th in state of Iowa. On the way to the event they checked out some other ecology, as they traveled through Bradgate to see how the environment was progressing following the tornado that ripped through the area. Garrigan's Ecology class is taught by Mr. Beany Bode.

There's always something new to check out on the Garrigan website. One of the biggest additions recently is a brand new section with thirteen pages of pictures from the special mass Bishop R. Walker Nickless celebrated at Garrigan. There's also lots of pictures and information about everything that goes on at Garrigan and Seton--both inside the classroom and in all the different activities. Garrigan's website is different from what most schools have online because almost everything there is created by students. Sarah Freking teaches the Computer Applications class that maintains the Garrigan website, and they do a great job of keeping everything up to date. You can check out the Bears' home online at garrigan - dot - unlimitedweb - dot - net.

Because of all the Gala news this week, we're taking a break from our Senior Spotlight, but we'll be saluting more seniors next week. On our Golden Bear calendar, there's solo and ensemble music contest today, and tonight we'll be celebrating Gala.

Tomorrow we "spring forward" for Daylight Savings Time. Then on Monday Garrison and Rebecca Brosnan will be in Cedar Falls for the All-State Speech Festival.

Tuesday we'll have a jeans day to support Relay for Life. That night the girls track team runs at Clear Lake and Garrigan alumnus Ben Geelan will be playing baseball for the Iowa Hawkeyes at Principal Park in Des Moines. 

Wednesday we'll have an assembly for the TIPS program. Then on Thursday several Garrigan business students will compete in the ILCC Business Competition in Emmetsburg. That night the boys track team runs at Lake Mills.

Friday we'll be hosting the BGHS girls relays on the Algona High track. Finally next Saturday is Prom Night 2006.

That's the "Bear Facts" for Gala week. Thanks for joining us, and be sure to tune in again next week for more news from Bishop Garrigan High School.

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