The Bear Facts
April 20, 2024

Good morning! I’m Violet Bode!

I’m Abbie Capesius!

And I’m Brendan Plathe! Welcome once again to the “Bear Facts”, the weekly radio show from Bishop Garrigan High School.

This past Tuesday we had an interesting experience. Just before the final bell at the end of the day a tornado warning was issued. We went to our evacuation areas, which meant most of the high school students ended up in the locker rooms. While the weather in Algona was the best it had been all day, there were bad storms not far west of here, and we had to wait until they had passed before we could leave for the day. Most students stayed around an extra hour after school, not leaving until 4:15 or 4:30.

We mentioned a couple weeks ago that three members of the Golden Bear quiz bowl team had competed in the spring online 3—2—1 contest. The team thought they’d done okay, but in fact they did very well. Their score of 230 made Garrigan the #1 team in Iowa. Second place North Scott scored just 194 points. Overall the Bears ended up #55 among teams from all over the country. Congratulations to Zach Warren, Scott Bormann, and Brendan Plathe on another successful quiz bowl competition.

Last Saturday Bishop Garrigan had eleven entries at the state solo and ensemble music contest over in Graettinger. Music students ended up earning five “superior” ratings and six “excellent” ratings. Division I’s in band went to Ethan Kuper for his trumpet solo, Elena Salinas for her saxophone solo, and Isabella Waechter for her flute solo. Alaina Casey earned a division II for her clarinet solo, as did the percussion choir of Violet Bode, Griffin Geving, Kayden Graves, Ava Hough, Sam Plathe, and Benjy Trainer.

In choir Benjy Trainer and Izzy Waechter were judged “superior” for their vocal solos. Solos by Tate Foertsch, Amaury Thomas, and Madelyn Bronk all received Division II or “excellent” ratings, as did the vocal duet by Cora Deardeuff and Kylie Capesius. Congratulations to directors Katherine Wiemers and Antonia Rupert and to all the solo and ensemble competitors.

Last weekend Garrigan held our 35th Gala fundraiser. All the guests seemed to enjoy the Kentucky Derby theme, and we ended up tying the highest income ever raised. When everything was added up, Gala 2024 brought in $430,000. Thanks to everyone who helped out to make this another successful event.

Last Monday eight Garrigan students exhibited their work at the Stinson Prairie Art Show. Senior Reagan Murphy had an especially good day. Her exhibit won first place in the show. Meanwhile freshman Eva Kohlhaas received an honorable mention. Others exhibiting artwork were Spencer Doerning, Alice Casey, Alyssa Haugland, Brooke Ludwig, Ella Schaaf, and Hanna Merron. Congratulations, artists!

This past Wednesday more than twenty Garrigan girls joined Fr. Zach Jones and religion teacher Rachel Vaske for a special event they called the Nun Run. They went up to Minnesota, where they visited they visited the sisters in the Religious Family of the Incarnate Word in Mankato and the Handmaids of the Heart of Jesus in New Ulm. They joined the nuns for meals and prayer, and they also participated in their service activities. It gave them a taste of what life in a religious order is like.

Recently in our math and English classes Garrigan students have been taking the Iowa Statewide Assessment of Student Progress. Our listeners may remember this test as “Basic Skills” or “ITEDs”. Today the test is taken online through a computer interface, but the basic idea is the same as when people filled in circles on paper. It’s one of two methods the school uses to report to the state on how our students are doing.

Our Senior Spotlight this week shines on Nathaniel Darling. Here to tell you about him is Benjy Trainer.

Nathaniel Darling is our next-to-last Senior Spotlight for the year. His biggest accomplishments have probably been in music. He’s been in band and choir all through school. He’s also been in the cast of lots of musicals and plays. As an athlete he’s competed in cross-country, and he’s also part of the archery team. We wish Nathaniel all the best after he graduates from Garrigan.

Thanks, Benjy! On our Golden Bear calendar, tomorrow there’s a special confirmation blessing mass for freshmen at St. Peter and Paul in West Bend. Iowa Assessments continue next week.

Monday night there’s tryouts for next year’s danz squad. We’ll have mass on Tuesday, which will be the last normal school mass the seniors will attend at Garrigan.

Tuesday night the Bears will host a coed golf meet with West Hancock and Garner Hayfield Ventura. There’s also girls track at Forest City and boys track at Emmetsburg on Tuesday.

Wednesday we’ll have Giving Back Day at Garrigan. Students will help out with different service projects around the school and community. There’s CYO golf in Ft. Dodge on Wednesday, and that night dance tryouts continue.

Thursday there’s a coed track meet at North Union. Friday morning we’ll have a special assembly with Garrigan graduate and published author Logan Capesius.

There’s coed golf at Forest City Friday afternoon. Finally next Saturday Brooke Ludwig and Zach Warren will fly out to Anaheim, California for the national DECA competition.

That’s the “Bear Facts” for another week. Thanks for joining us, and be sure to catch the show again next week for more news from Bishop Garrigan High School.