A celebration of community
Lakeridge Junior High barbecue is a hit with kids
Gazing at the bounty before him during the Lakeridge Junior High barbecue last week, seventh-grader Devrim Evans was overwhelmed.
Theres a whole army of brownies! he cried out.
And there was. Stacks of the chocolate squares were piled on plates at the end of a chain of cloth-covered tables, which also held juicy burgers, hotdogs and the fixins red onion, sliced tomatoes, cheese, shredded lettuce and condiments galore.
I made a triple-decker, Vegas-style burger that has everything inside of it, said Rudy Peralta, an eighth-grader.
Seventh-grader Aislinn Marek gazed at the table, carefully selecting the right toppings for her hotdog. So far, shed had a wonderful time performing cheer routines for hundreds of spectators.
I really liked performing, and the food is really good, she said.
There were a lot of other things going on at the barbecue last Friday, but one of the most important ones to Brittnee Gillson was how community members came out to show how invested they are.
There seems to be a lot of involvement, said Gillson, Lakeridge Junior High and youth cheer coach.
The community demonstrated its spirit with the efforts of students, school employees and parent volunteers such as Kristen Ryals. Ryals bustled about, checking in students and keeping things humming.
We had more kids show up than we even anticipated, she said, surrounded by a throng of children, some of whom had just gotten their faces painted.
New student Emily Goranson was one of the many kids relishing the barbecue. She embraced Rudy and Cian Whalen, friends shed recently met at the junior high who had made her feel welcome.
I dont know what Id do without these two, Emily said. I love them.
Over in the cafeteria, Principal Kurt Schultz sat down to a meal with his two sons and his wife, Jenn. Schultz said he liked the band, the cheerleaders and, well, all of the entertainment at the event.
Its been a celebration of coming back to school and a celebration of our community, he said.
Jenn Schultz said their boys 1-year-old Elliot and 4-year-old Ben have a great time at community events.
The boys love coming to this sort of thing, she said.They love coming to football games. They will eventually be Pacers, so its good for them to do this kind of stuff.
After the barbecue, the boys had another opportunity to join in with their Pacer community. There was a shuttle service from Lakeridge Junior High for those who wished to attend the Lakeridge High School football game that night.
Besides spending time with all her friends, the chance to hop a ride to the game was what Emily was looking forward to most and the food, something that Albertsons, Safeway and The Stafford had a little something to do with.JW_DISQUS_ADD_A_COMMENT