November 21, 2020

Good morning! I’m Isabel Casey!

I’m Ava Eisenbarth!

And I’m Veronica Capesius! You’re listening to the “Bear Facts”. Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Bishop Garrigan High School.

This past week Garrigan students, from the elementary through the high school, have been participating in a special service project. We’ve been collecting money, cans, and boxes of food for the Stuff the Trailer drive that the Chrome holds each year to help out the Kossuth County Food Pantry. Thanksgiving is a time when we count our blessings and pray for those in need. We hope the food we’ve contributed offers help to those who need it.

Something we’re especially thankful for this year is that on the whole we’ve managed to stay safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. While we’ve had both students and teachers come down with the virus and others who have had to quarantine, on the whole we’ve mostly stayed healthy. Garrigan was one of the few schools that kept real classes going when we were online last spring, and—knock on wood—we’re glad that we’ve managed to have in-person classes throughout the fall.

This past week the governor announced many changes that will happen with winter activities because of the pandemic. Fans will be strictly limited at basketball games. Each player has been given two tickets that they can distribute to family or friends. Fans can only be there during the game that player participates in—whether boys or girls, varsity of JV. Throughout basketball season we encourage other fans to watch the Golden Bears online. All our home games will be livestreamed, and so will concerts and other public performances during the winter.

The new rules mean changes for many other activities as well. There will be no junior high sports until at least the middle of December, though some of those games may be made up once we are allowed to play again. We also learned that speech will be done virtually this year, with judges watching recordings of the performances remotely. We know it’s not ideal, but we’re hoping the changes will get us through the crisis, and we’re all looking forward to the day when things are more normal again.

A long time Thanksgiving tradition at Garrigan is our annual memorial mass, where we remember the alumni who have passed away. More than three hundred deceased alumni are honored at the mass, and the number keeps growing every year. The mass features a PowerPoint with the pictures of all the people who are no longer with us.

This year’s memorial mass will be next Wednesday at 9am in Friedmann Auditorium. Families of those who have died are invited to attend in person. The seats will be more spread out than usual, and masks are required—as they are at all our school masses. If you don’t want to attend in person, we encourage you to watch the livestream of the mass, which will also be archived on YouTube so you can watch it at any time.

Last Wednesday twelve members of the Golden Bear quiz bowl team participated in the semi-annual 3—2—1 contest. This is a nationwide competition that is held online. Teams work together to answer 240 questions from every field of knowledge. Garrigan scored 287 points, which is significantly higher than they did in the same contest last year.

Students participating in 3—2—1 include seniors Abbi Heying, Joey Trainer, and Aric Laubenthal; juniors Ava Eisenbarth and Xander Darling; and freshmen Brendan Plathe, Nick Laubenthal, Nathaniel Darling, Sam Plathe, Benjy Trainer, and Ben Greteman. We should know how the Bears did compared to other schools shortly after Thanksgiving.

We’ll also have to wait until after Thanksgiving to see how the danz squad did when they competed at state earlier this week. Because this year’s contest was a mix of in-person and recorded performances, the judges are waiting until December to release the final results. We’re expecting the Garrigan girls to do well as a team, and we hope Cora Ricke, Lillee Deike, and Ella Schaaf also get high scores for their individual routines.

Our Senior Spotlight this week shines on Grace Rosenmeyer. Here to tell you about her is Maryanne Capesius.

Grace Rosenmeyer is a Wesley native who has been very successful in track and basketball. Away from school she’s active in the Kossuth County Saddle Club, and she’s worked at Pet Haven’s resort and at Bear Care. She’s looking at a career in veterinary medicine, specializing in animal chiropractic and massage. We wish Gracie the very best in the future.

Thanks, Maryanne. Because of the holiday, we’ll be looking at two weeks of events on our Golden Bear calendar this week. Garrigan has a full day of school next Tuesday, and we’ll get out early Wednesday. We’ll have parish busing, because the Algona Community Schools are not in session.

The girls basketball team starts their season at St. Ed’s Tuesday night. The deceased alumni mass is next Wednesday at 9am. Thursday is Thanksgiving, and we’ll also have next Friday off.

Monday the 30th the boys basketball team starts their season at St. Ed’s. Then Tuesday, December 1st, the Bears will travel to Belmond for a basketball quad.

We’ll have a school mass on Wednesday the 2nd, and Friday the 4th there’s an out of uniform day to raise money for the student gift for Gala. Then Saturday, December 5th, the Bears will play five games—from JJV to varsity—as they host Mason City Newman.

That’s the “Bear Facts for November. We’ll be off next weekend as we celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday, but be sure to join us two weeks from today when we’ll be back with more news from Bishop Garrigan High School.