The Bear Facts
October 15, 2011

Good morning! I’m Austin Salz!

And I’m Craig Kohlhaas! Thanks for joining us for the “Bear Facts”, the weekly radio show from Bishop Garrigan High School.

Did you know that all the coins from Iceland feature fish on them? … Or that Lansing is the only state capital that isn’t a county seat? … Or that Justin Bieber lived in public housing before becoming a millionaire at age 14? If information like that is a cinch for you, then you should be in quiz bowl. Quiz bowl is a competition that runs a lot like a game show, where teams of four students match answer questions in fields ranging from science to literature to art to sports.

Today about two hundred students from all over northern Iowa are in town for the Bishop Garrigan Invitational Quiz Bowl Tournament, one of the oldest and largest academic competitions around. The Garrigan tournament started twenty-one years ago with just eight teams from Catholic schools around the area. It rapidly expanded, and over the years we’ve hosted as many as seventy-two teams. This year’s tournament is a more manageable size—fifty-one teams from nineteen different schools.

Quiz bowl is not classed, so small area schools like Armstrong Ringsted, Sioux Central, and Bishop Garrigan will be competing head-to-head with Ankeny, one of the largest schools in the state. The Golden Bears have a long tradition of success in academic competition, and with six teams entered in today’s tournament, they’re looking for more success today. The games begin at 10:00 this morning. Anyone is welcome to watch, and admission is free.
Last week brought some good news for Garrigan’s Solid Gold Marching Band. Not only did the Bears win their fourth straight Division One rating at state, but Bishop Garrigan was the only school in their class to earn a Division One at the Fort Dodge site. Congratulations to Director Ken Ferjak and the band!

Fifteen Garrigan choir members have been working hard this fall, getting ready to audition for the all-state choir. Shawn Vaske, Nick Bronk, Christian Matthews, Dustin Miller, Philip Detrick, Matthew Fakler, Mark Fakler, Sean Hart, John Richter, Sophia Kaduce, Angelica Brosnan, Grace Steil, Melanie Mergen, and Dorothy Kirsch are this year’s all-state auditioners. Auditions will be next Saturday in Storm Lake, and the all-state festival will be in November in Ames. Best wishes to all those trying out for all-state!

Two of Garrigan’s runners earned all-conference honors last Tuesday at the North Central Conference cross-country meet in Ventura. Erin Reedy finished in fourth place overall, and Erin Quinlin ended up ninth. Garrigan’s team overall ended up in third place in a conference mostly made up schools one and two classes larger than they are. The boys’ team took eighth place at the conference meet, with Nick Bronk topping the Bear runners in 20th place overall. Next Thursday the Bears will be in Holstein, where they hope to qualify for the state cross-country meet on October 29.

Last Thursday was a big day for Garrigan junior Sean Dyson. Sean has represented Garrigan in many different events in Special Olympics over the years, and last week he was in Estherville for the district Special Olympics bowling competition. Congratulations, Sean!

The freshmen, sophomores, and juniors have been busy with their #2 pencils taking ITEDs, the Iowa Tests of Educational Development. The ITEDs were totally re-designed this year, so scores on this year’s test can’t really be compared to previous versions. The old “Sources of Information” test has been eliminated, with the sills it tested moved into English and social studies tests. Other tests have been changed to better reflect what is actually taught in Iowa classrooms. The scores from ITEDs should be back around the time of conferences next month.

The Garrigan website——is now in its seventeenth year on the internet. All along the website has been created by students and mostly for students and alumni. This fall Lucas Eischen, Victor Berte, Jason Reding, and Billy Schiltz are maintaining the site, which is one of the most comprehensive school websites anywhere. Many of the pages they create are made with a new software package, Microsoft Web Expression, a Windows program that allows a variety of new options. A good place to start on the website is the “What’s New” page, which details the updates that happen every single day. Be sure to check out what’s new at Garrigan by going online to

Our Senior Spotlight this week shines on Mitch Rahm. Here to tell you about him is John Richter.

Mitchell Rahm comes to Garrigan from the St. Benedict area. He’s a football captain who has won all-district and all-area honors. In track he qualified for state in the shot put and the 4 x 100 relay, and he’s also part of the Golden Bear basketball team. Mitch is a four-year student council member who is senior class co-president this year. He is also active in Christian Leadership in Action. He wants to play football in college, and he’d like a career as an athletic trainer. Good luck in the future, Mitch!

Thanks, John! On our Golden Bear calendar this week, there’s the BGHS quiz bowl tournament today. The competition begins at 10:00, and playoffs will start around 1:15 this afternoon.

Monday the Algona swim team has a meet in Perry and the freshman/sophomore football team travels to Albert City—Truesdale. Then Tuesday there’s another swim meet, this time at Charles City.

We’ll have mass on Wednesday, with an early dismissal that afternoon for teacher inservice. Volleyball regionals begin at Garrigan Wednesday night.

Thursday the cross-country team runs in the district meet at Holstein. Next Friday the football team hosts North Iowa, and then on Saturday there are all-state auditions in Storm Lake.

That’s the “Bear Facts” for this 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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