The Bear Facts ... May 24, 2008

Good morning! I'm Randy Kenyon!

And I'm Alec Boeckholt! Welcome to our last "Bear Facts" of the school year, where we're celebrating summer here at Bishop Garrigan High School.

Quick audio of Alice Cooper's "School's Out":

School's out for summer!

School's out forever!

Well, not forever, but school IS out for summer-at least here at Garrigan. We finished up final exams last Thursday, and now the long-awaited summer vacation is really here. Baseball and softball have both been going for a week now, so we're definitely settling in for the season.

The biggest event coming up is the quiz bowl team's trip to the National Academic Championships. They'll be leaving for Chicago on Friday, June 6th. They got their competition schedule last weekend, and while they'll definitely have their work cut out for them at nationals. Their competitors are heavy on schools from Texas, including Alief Hastings, a perennial powerhouse at nationals and two large schools from the Dallas suburbs. They're also slated to play the Chicago Latin School, one of the most prestigious private schools in America, and schools from Sandusky, Ohio, and Elizabethtown, Kentucky.

This is Garrigan's ninth trip to national quiz bowl, but the first one the school has made in four years. It will be the second time the quiz bowl team has gone to Chicago. Past trips have taken them to Dallas, New Orleans, Washington, New York, and Saint Louis. One nice thing about going to the Windy City is that they'll have a cheering section of parents going along with them.

 The quiz bowl captain at nationals will be Ethan Dahlhauser. Other recent graduates on the team are Shane Koob, Mark Poeppe, Jacob Zittritsch, and Brent Kajewski. Junior Joe Straub, sophomores Rebeccah Erdman and Brittany Berte, and freshmen Anna Kollasch and Jake Rosenmeyer will also be competing at nationals. While only four students can play at any one time, all ten will we playing at some point in the competition.

In addition to playing six games, the team will also be having some fun and doing some sightseeing in Chicago. Some of the group will be seeing the Twins take on the White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field, while others will see the musical Wicked. They'll also be seeing some of Chicago's top museums, and just kicking back on the lakefront. The group will be gone June 6th through 10th. We hope they have a good trip, and we wish them good luck in competition.

Quiz bowl isn't the only event coming up this summer. A lot of Garrigan students have already put quite a bit of effort into raising money for Relay for Life. Garrigan will be hosting this year's event the weekend of June 13 and 14, and we're expecting a big crowd. Biology teacher Beany Bode has a lot of gigs planned with his musical group, the Muscle Shirts, and several of the students will be practicing their musical skills too.

Even though it's summer, the scrip office is still open and busy at Garrigan. Scrip has been bigger than ever at Garrigan-with new participating merchants like Fareway and Wal-Mart adding to the demand. When people buy gift cards through scrip, between 2 and 20 percent of the face value goes back to Garrigan. It can either be applied to a specific student's tuition or to the general tuition assistance fund. We want to thank all the merchants who participate in the scrip program, the volunteers who organize things, and all the people who buy scrip and help make ours one of the most successful small school scrip programs around.

Everyone spends their summers differently. The vast majority of Garrigan students will be working at one or more jobs. Some have seasonal jobs like lifeguarding and detasseling, while others will be earning money working in area stores and restaurants. A lot of the younger students will be taking driver's ed this summer-most of them from Garrigan teachers like Mike Stence, Marty Wadle, and Ron Patterson. Some of our recent graduates are already taking college classes, such as calculus or history classes at Iowa Lakes. Others will be keeping busy on the baseball and softball teams. Even with all that, though, we know pretty much everyone will also be spending some time just laying out and relaxing. After all, it's summer!

While this year is barely over, the student council has already gotten started planning next year's Homecoming celebration. Homecoming 2008 will be an even bigger event than usual, because it will kick off Garrigan's fiftieth anniversary celebration. To mark the occasion, longtime superintendent Father Cecil Friedmann will be celebrating the Homecoming mass. Both at Homecoming and throughout the coming year there will be a variety of special events to mark fifty golden years for the Golden Bears.

With three months to go through on our Golden Bear calendar, we obviously can't take a look at everything. We will try to hit the highlights, though. On Memorial Day the band will be playing for the festivities over in Whittemore, and then next weekend there's CYO baseball and softball in Carroll.

June 6th the quiz bowl team leaves for nationals. Relay for Life will be June 13 - 14. Garrigan hosts baseball playoffs beginning July 5th, and softball playoffs start on the 7th. 

Band lessons start July 30th, and fall sports camps start the first week of August. The second week there's football two-a-days, and teacher workshops begin August 18th. Finally school starts up again on Wednesday, August 20.

That's the "Bear Facts" for this school year. On behalf of the forty-four people who announced the show this year, we'd like to thank faculty producer David Burrow and all the sponsors who have kept us on the air for seventeen years.

We'd also like to thank KLGA for airing the show and all of you for tuning in every week. We'll be off for the summer, but we hope to be back on August 30th to start our eighteenth season bringing you all the news from Bishop Garrigan High School.

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