Story by Logan Keller
Discovery High School buses pulled up to Southside-Jaycee Park on September 30th with eager underclassmen and upperclassmen alike. This was Discovery High School’s fourth annual park trip to date, with more students attending than ever before.
The student newspaper interviewed several students before the park trip to see how they thought it would go. “I think [the park trip] is going to be pretty awesome, because everyone gets along pretty well and it really feels like a community here,” says Andrew Meade, a current freshman. Ross Dant, a sophomore theorized about the changes the new space would bring, “Last year’s [park trip] was pretty fun. People will probably spread out since it’s a bigger park.” Jalen Johnson, a current junior, continued the conversation saying, “I think it’s better than the other park because there’s more to do, there’s a stage, there are more freshman and there are more fields to spread out in.”
Discovery moved the annual trip from Henry Fork River Park near Hickory due to limited space and issues with management. However, changing the location of the trip proved to be extremely advantageous as there was now room for Discovery’s bi-annual barbecue fundraiser to be held at the park.
“I think it went really well, the kids enjoyed it, and it was easier to get to [the park],” said Gene Scronce, the chief coordinator for the barbecue fundraiser, fondly referred to as “the barbecue man”. The school sold a record-breaking 575 plates this year, partially due to the fact that students could purchase barbecue to eat for lunch since they were not on campus.
The stage also allowed for Senate to do more with the community, including an open mic day and enrichment sign-ups. Open mic saw a significant amount of student participation including musical performances from members of the junior class and a sword fight between sophomores Mason Callahan as “Hillary Clinton” and Adam Wilson. Seniors Max Bailey, Alfred Torres, Phoenix Winters, and Susie Wilson performed a rendition of Bohemian Rhapsody, in the spirit of a similar karaoke session during a community of the seniors’ freshman year.
The reason for such a success with a park trip, according to Mr. Robinson, is that we expect every student to follow the norms. “We are just using general supervision- you know, folks are just wandering around,” he said. “We rely on people following the norms to do this.”
Towards the end of the trip Susie Wilson had members of the senior class match up with their freshman “buddies” for bonding games and a scavenger hunt, to help create unity between the oldest and youngest classes.
Though the annual park trip is an established tradition, there are always a lot of firsts with each new trip. One of those firsts this year concerned documentation of the park trip itself. Zach Perry, a senior, snapped some aerial photos of the park activities using his drone.
Discovery seniors mourned the fact that this would be their last school-wide park trip. The class of 2017 were freshmen during the first Discovery High School park trip. The 2016 park trip proved to be the best yet in terms of community experience and unity. It is a sacred day of Discovery traditions and firsts, which Discovery students and staff will continue to cherish and protect.