JEFFERSON — Antlers, Santa hats and Christmas sweaters, complete with lights, were all key components to Reindeer Games at Jefferson High School last Friday afternoon.
For more than three decades on the last day of school before Christmas, students and teaches get to wind down with competition, silly games and flying pies.
“This was going on when I was in school,” said teacher Scott Barber, who graduated from Jefferson High School in 1986.
Jefferson High School cheerleaders plan the Reindeer Games with their adviser, Carrie Pawlowski. Musical chairs, whipped cream slurping, eggnog chugging, pin-the-tail-on-the-Grinch and many other fun diversions kept the students laughing throughout the afternoon.
Jefferson High School Principal Jeremy Huber said the cheerleaders have done a nice job of organizing the event after taking over from student council more than six years ago.
Huber said students were making up tests and listening to the jazz band at lunch before getting their competitive juices going. Student Sheridan Wilber was all about that.
“They are competitive (and) I am a very competitive person,” she said.
One game involved students collecting Christmas ornaments with a Christmas present box while on their stomach on a skateboard — not for the faint of heart, but five teams gave it their all and only a few “near collisions” were visible.
The school’s philanthropy club got into the action by sponsoring a contest to choose who got hit with a pie. Students voted on their pie recipient by putting money in a jar with the teacher’s name on it. Rob Mead was the lucky “winner,” taking a pie in the face to help others.
“I’m so excited. It is very festive … and we get to throw pie in Mr. Mead’s face,” said senior Cheyenne Kase.
Philanthropy club president Mary Hostetler said the club tries to use the money for a “Share a Christmas” family.
Grady Wessollek got wrapped up, literally, in his task of becoming a snowman. Senior classmates Kase, Lilith Joerns and Haley Sukalac wrapped him in toilet paper, put a fancy hat on his head and added other accoutrements to win the contest against the younger students.
Overall, the points race for the Reindeer Games class winner came down to a singing battle between the juniors and the seniors, with the soon-to-be graduates winning the day.
Pawlowski said it takes about eight hours of planning, over several weeks, to organize the games.
“We figure out what games to play and what we need to bring in,” she said.