The Bear Facts
April 5, 2008

Good morning! I'm Alec Boeckholt!

And I'm Randy Kenyon! You're listening to a special edition of the "Bear Facts", where it's Gala 2008 here at Bishop Garrigan High School.

Before we get around to the happy news of Gala, we need to begin on a sorrowful note this week. Last Sunday, Chuck Stillman passed away. Mr. Stillman taught elementary and middle school at Seton for more than twenty years. Most of us at Garrigan had him as a teacher, and almost everyone who was in his class remembers him as one of the best teachers they ever had. As he fought a long battle with cancer, we prayed for Mr. Stillman every day in our classes at school. While in the end there was no miracle, we're glad that his suffering finally came to an end. Current and former students filled St. Cecelia's Church for his funeral last Thursday, and we want all his family to know we continue to think of them and pray for them and that Mr. Stillman's memory will be alive well into the future.

While we celebrated Mr. Stillman's life, we also celebrated a lot of successes here at Garrigan this past week. Most notable was our national champion dance team, which brought home three enormous trophies. The Golden Bear danz squad competed in three different categories at the Marching Auxiliary Nationals last weekend in Ft. Worth. They took second place in jazz and first place nationwide in both pom and hip-hop. Congratulations to Coach Colleen Conway-Schiltz and the danz squad!

The quiz bowl team also did well last weekend. Garrigan had three teams entered in the Boone Invitational, and two of the three were among the top sixteen teams in play-offs. Garrigan's top team-consisting of Shane Koob, Joe Straub, Ethan Dahlhauser, and Brittany Berte-made it to the quarterfinals, with their only losses coming to 4-A schools from Ames and Southeast Polk. Two teachers from Garrigan, David Burrow and Beany Bode, also brought home small trophies for their success in a special coaches' round at the Boone tournament. Congratulations to them and to the whole quiz bowl team!

It's time for Gala 2008, the nineteenth year for our biggest fundraiser and celebration here at Garrigan. In recent years Gala has brought in more than $200,000 a year to help out at both Garrigan and Seton. This year's Gala theme is "The Greatest Show on Earth", which takes a trip to the circus and makes it elegant. Art students have been busy all week finishing the decorations, and once again the gym has been transformed into a beautiful ballroom for the big event. The tables are sold out for Gala this year, so we'll have a capacity crowd enjoying the special evening.

The centerpiece of Gala each year is dinner. This year's meal begins with trays of hors d'oeuvres including smoked turkey dumplings, crab yummies, and mushroom custades. The soup course is a tomato bisque, followed by a salad of mixed greens, apple wedges, and kiwi fruit in a raspberry vinaigrette. The main course features roasted New York loin strips, surrounded by garlic mashed potatoes, glazed baby carrots, and dinner rolls with butter. Then there's a special dessert called "crystal balls", plus chocolate and coffee. There's more than enough to satisfy any appetite.

Throughout the meal guests will bid on more than sixty-five live auction items. This year's gift items include a Snap-On tool box valued at almost $7,000, farm fresh organic produce, Minnesota Vikings tickets, and lots of elegant gourmet dinners. There are also hundreds of items available on silent auction, and raffles such as the Half Chance, Last Chance, and Chest of Chance provide more opportunities to win. Two big winners will also win a new car and a boat or four-wheeler. The money all goes to a good cause, too. It helps out with everything we need at the Catholic schools here in Algona.

Our Senior Spotlight this week shines on Jake Grein and Nick Kirsch. Here to tell you about them is Jacob Zittritsch.

Jacob Grein was part of the district champion football team last fall, and he's looking forward to winning his second straight intramural basketball championship later this month. Jacob used to be in track, and he enjoys studying athletic training. Away from school you might see him cleaning chickens at Johnny's or hunting and fishing. He'll be at the University of Iowa next year, and he wants us to say "Go Hawks!"

Nick Kirsch is a Wesley native whose biggest activity over the years at Garrigan has been golf. When he's not busy with classes like Economics, you might see him working at the Hillside Golf Course in Wesley. In the fall he plans to attend Iowa Lakes in Emmetsburg, where he'll be studying to be a diesel technician. We wish both Nick and Jake all the best in the future.

Thanks, Jake! On our Golden Bear calendar this week, there's state solo and ensemble music contest today. Then tonight it's time for "The Greatest Show on Earth", Gala 2008.

Next Tuesday there's boys track at Iowa Falls and girls track at Algona High. The girls golf team will be at home, while the boys play at Humboldt.

Wednesday night there's Virtus training for people who want to volunteer at Garrigan or Seton. Thursday about twenty girls will be going to a Women in Science and Engineering program at Iowa State, and that night there's boys track at Lake Mills.

Friday night the boys track team runs at Estherville, while the girls hold their home meet at Algona High. Also next Friday there's boys golf at Clear Lake and girls golf at Spring Valley. Then next Saturday it's Prom night 2008.

That's the "Bear Facts" for Gala week. Thanks for listening, and be sure to set your dial here again next week for more news from Bishop Garrigan High School.

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