Several faculty members at Stafford High School wore Torrey Smith jerseys to school on Friday, Jan. 13, to show their support for Stafford alumnus Torrey Smith.
Smith was an outstanding quarterback for the varsity team while he was at SHS. He was elected homecoming king his senior year.
Smith went on to sign a football scholarship with the University of Maryland where he was an outstanding wide receiver breaking Maryland’s record in yards. Smith was drafted in the second round by the Ravens in last year’s NFL draft.
Smith was named the NFL player of the week when his first three touches on the ball resulted in three catches for touchdowns. Smith has proven a valuable players for the Ravens. This weekend he plays in his first NFL/AFL playoff game.
The faculty wore his shirts with pride. Several faculty members were not available for the photo but they are supporting Smith’s efforts this weekend.
Seniors Griffin and Cooke run the Smoke Signal, managing a staff of 150 students and putting out a paper every two weeks. Griffin is in charge of the X day paper while Cooke is in charge of the Y day paper.
Griffin has been assistant editor-in-chief and was promoted to editor-in-chief in early November. Cooke has been the photography editor until Elexxus Brown moved to Maryland giving up her position. Cooke was named her replacement.
The editorial board has been revising the staff manual with hopes of having the administration approved the paper as a designated open forum for student discussion. Several elements have been proposed to the manual to describe staff position duties and procedures for the Smoke Signal.
Each block of journalism has discussed new ideas, story topics and new elements to add to the paper. Many of these ideas will be added as students iron out the details.
The most recent activity of the Smoke Signal is recruiting students from the rising ninth grade class at the orientation to be held on Jan. 18 beginning at 7 p.m.
The Smoke Signal staff tie-dyed shirts, in order to create their tie-dye feature page, on Sept. 14. The second block X-day students each brought in and dyed their Smoke Signal shirts and then left them to dry.
The dye used was from a kit that was bought at a local craft store. Students attempted several different styles and techniques to try and find the best way to make the design. The three techniques used were the bull’s-eye, swirl, and crumple.
The bull’s-eye technique is used to make an appearance of a bullseye and is made by pulling the center of the shirt up in to a long cylindrical spire and is then tied off and dyed in sections.
The swirl appearance is made by taking the shirt and twisting the shirt to a swirl and then tied and dyed. Many students attempted the technique.
“It was pretty simple and it came out looking very cool,” sophomore Megan Corsano said.
The crumple technique involves taking the shirt and swirling and wrinkling the fabric to create layers, then the layers are dyed with different colors to create a unique look.
“It looked really cool,” senior Matt Yelverton said. “And it did not take a lot of work.”
As the leaves start to fall, the Learn and Serve class helped planned and run the third annual Harvest Festival in cooperation with Habitat for Humanity. The festival was Saturday Oct. 2 at Walker Grant Middle School from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Learn and Serve students started setting up the school at 6:30 a.m., worked the festival, and then cleaned up from 4 to 5 p.m. The students helped run all of the games in the festival. The Learn and Serve students also played with the children to make sure they had a good time.
“I really love the participation,” Learn and Serve sponsor Amanda Scanlon said. “This was our first event, and it really started out our year strong.”
There were pumpkin patches, hayrides, a haunted house, face painting, moon bounces and more. Like a fair, there was food and live music as well.
“I couldn’t wait to interact with the children,” junior Tatyania Williams said. “It was fun to decorate the pumpkins with them and go on the moon bounce.”
Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit, ecumenical Christian housing ministry.
The organization seeks to eliminate poverty housing and homelessness from the world and to make decent shelter a matter of conscience and action.
The festival was open to all, with a small cost of admission. Children from all over the community came to the event, mostly, elementary and middle school students. The event was an opportunity for children to come together and celebrate the coming of fall. The Learn and Serve students earn their many hours by going to the event.
“I was super excited to help out the community and have fun with the children,” junior Erin Smith said. “It has a lot of cool games and that’s what we were mainly running.”
Carter Bank and Trust, Humana, and the Family Preservation Services of Virginia also sponsored the event along with Habitat for Humanity. All of the proceeds from the Harvest Festival went to the Greater Fredericksburg Habitat for Humanity program. This consists of trying to provide shelter to the homeless people in the Fredericksburg area.
Kendall Rayha said, “It was a really great opportunity for kids to learn about habitat and have a good time.”
With Spirit Week in full affect, students are having a fun time dressing up and showing their Stafford pride.
“Finding out what people are wearing each morning is the best part of the whole week,” SCA President Annie Moncure said, “All the different costumes are always hilarious.”
Spirit Week is a long tradition at many high schools across the country. It always leads up to the Homecoming game and dance.
“Even though our Spirit Week this year is only four days, everyone is still going to enjoy it all,” Moncure said.
This year, there was a small controversy about one of the Spirit Days. Nerd Day was in question because of the stereotype that it attempts to mock.
“People would dress in white shorts, suspenders, high-water pants, and big glasses,” SCA Vice-President B.h. Kim said.
A parent notified the school and Principal Joe Lewis of their concern about Nerd Day and its meaning.
“I really didn’t think it would be that big of a deal, especially since we had Nerd Day last year,” Kim said, “Nerds are cool anyways.”
The sudden change conflicts with students’ plans because many had already prepared for that day.
“I don’t think we should have had to change it. I mean it was only one person,” SCA Parliamentarian William Janney said.
Currently, Nerd day has been changed to Twin day. Students will still be able to dress up and be able to be creative for Twin day just as they would for Nerd day.
Julia Colopy, editor-in-chief, redesigned the template for the Smoke Signal and was rewarded with the C.L. Muller award at Virginia Tech’s jCAMP in Blacksburg on July 22. Other winners from Stafford High School are Elexxus Brown, Most Valuable Staffer in Advanced Reporting, Molly Podlesny and Bridget Phillips, Best Story in New and Feature Writing, Kerstin Felton, Best Leader in Advanced Photography, Francisco Gonzalez for Best Journalympics Photo in Advanced Photography and John Kovalchik, Best Class Photo in Advanced Photography.