Showing posts with label Tuacahn. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Tuacahn. Show all posts

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Leadership Conference 2015

 This week I went with the HHS Student Body Officers and Class Officers to a leadership conference at Dixie State University in St. George.  I was so happy to leave the chaos of my life behind and I had so much fun with them!
We had time to plan for the 2015-2016 school year (but I think they are just plotting against me here).
We participated in an amazing activity called "Break Through" where the students literally broke a one-inch thick board with their bare hands.  We did this activity last year and those officers were very affected by it so I was really looking forward to having this group go through the experience.  It was amazing!  This year they made the advisors do it, too!  I was really afraid that I wouldn't be able to break it but we are all more powerful than we can even imagine and we can channel that power if we choose to!
Yeah.  They all have more personality than they know what to do with!  They were singing, chanting, and playing games everywhere we went which made them extremely popular with the other schools (you should have seen all of the other schools saying goodbye to them yesterday!)  They kept me laughing all week!  Also, aren't those shirts fabulous?  My friend made them for us!
There was a really fun poster making workshop where they learned some cool chalk techniques!  I thought their poster turned out amazing!
We got to see Beauty and the Beast at the Tuacahn Amphitheater.  The majority of them had never been to a live theatre performance before and it was beyond thrilling for me to watch their reaction to this show!  It was a magical production and the two lead actors were incredible!
We had the opportunity to perform some community service at the Utah Food Bank in St. George.  It was a great experience.
Our assistant principal took us all to dinner at Chili's and it was delicious!
We also had some great keynote speakers, round table discussions, and workshops and we got to participate in a spirit bowl, a black light dance, Dixie Idol (a talent show), and a swim party.  It was a really fun week!  Thank you Dixie State University for showing us such a great time!
Of course we had to make a stop at Swig on the way out of town!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Leadership Conference 2014

I have had such a fun week!  I took my Student Body Officers to a Leadership Conference at Dixie State University in St. George.  I specifically chose this particular conference because many of the schools in our area go to it and I wanted to create some collaborative relationships (plus I wanted to see The Little Mermaid).  I am so glad I chose this one!  I think my students had a lot of fun but I also think they had some amazing experiences which will help them be great leaders next year! After we checked into our motel on Tuesday afternoon, we went to the university for a keynote speaker and some roundtable discussions.  Our Student Body President gave a fabulous roundtable about our Multicultural Week last year (which was a great success) and the rest of them got some great ideas from other schools which we are excited to implement.  Then we had a pizza party and spent the rest of the evening at the Washington City Community Center which had a swimming pool, various courts for team sports, a climbing wall, etc.  My students really enjoyed this facility and basically owned the volleyball court!
Wednesday morning we had another keynote speaker and then an amazing activity.  The students were given wooden boards and told to write down everything that was holding them back on them.  Then the presenter had them each break the boards.  Wow!  This was one of the most powerful presentations I have ever seen and most of the students at the conference reacted very emotionally to the experience!
After everyone broke their boards, the presenter turned off the lights and had them all chant "I am a force for good.  I will make a difference.  I will step up!"  I was almost in tears listening to 200 students repeat this.  I always hear people talk about how terrible this generation is but I think the world is in pretty good hands with this group!
After lunch the students had a poster making workshop.  Isn't that Multicultural Week poster awesome (despite the fact that they didn't include a Canadian flag)?  We had a BBQ for dinner and then we all went to the Tuacahn Amphitheatre to see The Little Mermaid.
I really love the shows at Tuacahn and I had never seen the Broadway version of The Little Mermaid before so I was pretty excited!  So were my students!
The show was pretty incredible with lots of special effects.  There was a wall of water at the back of the stage which was amazing!  All of the mermaids glided around the stage on Segways (but we can't figure out how the actors operated them) and various sea creatures "flew" around the stage and into the audience (my favorite was the turtle) during "Under the Sea."  Speaking of which, all of my students giggled with delight as soon as the distinctive opening notes of "Under the Sea" started playing.  Emma Degerstedt (Ariel) and James Royce Edwards (Prince Eric) had beautiful voices and they gave wonderful performances.  Payton Kemp (Flounder) also had an incredible voice and was absolutely adorable.  Heidi Anderson was perfect as Ursula and I loved the sizzling and crackling lights on Flotsam and Jetsam's costumes.  It was a fantastic show and my students raved about it the whole drive back to the motel.  I'm so glad they had the opportunity to see it!
Thursday morning the students were able to participate in service projects around the St. George area.  My students went to the Utah Food Bank.
Again, this was a wonderful experience for the students.  We were involved in sorting the food into various categories and decorating the boxes used to deliver food to people in need.  In the afternoon the students went to various workshops on leadership.
On Thursday night, dinner was on our own so that we could process what had been learned and plan for the upcoming school year.  We were lucky enough to have our assistant principal with us and he took us to dinner at Chili's which was a lot of fun!  I am so glad that he was able to come with us because the students absolutely adore him now!  We were able to plan our Welcome Assembly and Homecoming Week (we have an awesome theme).  Our waitress was so nice!  She gave the students some individual containers of chips and salsa to take with them to snack on later that night!  Then we had Dixie Idol and our Student Body President was one of the three winners!  He has got some moves!  We had a really fun Spirit Bowl (lots of ideas for our assemblies) and a black light dance.  A really late night but lots of fun!
Friday morning we had one final keynote speaker.  I thought all of the speakers were great but this one was my favorite.  I loved it when he said that all you need to do anything you want is 30 seconds of insane courage!  Isn't that great?  Then the conference concluded and my students were sad to leave.
On the way out of town we went on a little hike to Dixie Rock.  The boys were trying to catch lizards...
This picture makes me laugh because I have a similar one of my family in this same spot making silly poses.  I will have to find it...
Last year at our leadership conference I treated the students to some Aggie ice cream (we were at Utah State University).  This year I wanted to do the same for this group so I took them to Swig, which is a crazy popular place in St. George (there is also one in Provo and one in Bountiful) for all kinds of mixed sodas.  I had Sprite with a shot each of mango and raspberry puree!  Unbelievably fabulous!  The students want them to build a Swig near the school!

These Student Body Officers are amazing and I am so excited to work with them!  If this week is any indication, we a going to have a wonderful year!  I'm so glad we got to have such an incredible experience together.  A huge thanks to Dixie State University!

Note:  Hands up if you think the student who never smiles (it is my mission in life to get him to smile) looks like Adam Levine from Maroon 5.  Is it just me?

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

I Can't Wait for Summer Vacation!

Sometimes the closing of the school year is hard.  This year is proving to be more difficult than usual so I am concentrating on all of the fun things that I hope to do this summer.

Deer Valley Music Festival
When it gets really hot in the valley, it is nice to head up to the mountains at the Deer Valley Resort and hear the Utah Symphony play under the stars!  You can bring a blanket and a picnic and sit on the hill or there are seats available near the stage.  This is one of my favorite things to do in the summer and we have heard the orchestra play the 1812 Overture (complete with real cannons) several times.  The pictures above are from last year's Bravo Broadway concert, which was fantastic.  I just got my tickets in the mail for the Music of U2 and I am beyond excited!  Go here for a complete schedule and to purchase tickets.

Utah Shakespeare Festival
The Utah Shakespeare Festival is held every summer on the campus of Southern Utah University in Cedar City (a six hour drive south of Salt Lake City).  It is another one of my favorite things to do.  Sometimes Marilyn and I spend several days and see every play and sometimes we go down for one day and see a couple.  Once I drove down to see Hamlet and then drove straight home.  It was worth it.  The pictures above are from the 2010 production of Macbeth, which was awesome.  This year I am really excited to see Into the Woods (they produce non-Shakespeare plays, too) and Twelfth Night. I'm not going to lie, I'm also excited for the raspberry tarts!   Go here for a complete schedule and to purchase tickets.

Tuacahn Amphitheatre
Tuacahn is a natural amphitheatre made out of red rock in St. George (about eight hours south of Salt Lake City).  They perform several musicals in repertory every summer and you can also purchase tickets to a pre-show dinner.  The above pictures are from the 2012 production of Hairspray.  My very favorite production here was Les Miserables because they used the terrain beyond the stage for the epic battle on the barricade.  It was amazing.  This year my student body officers are going to leadership camp at Dixie State University and we get to see The Little Mermaid.  Go here for a complete schedule and to purchase tickets.

Sundance Summer Theatre
Sundance Summer Theatre, in conjunction with the Utah Valley University Theatre Department, has produced a musical at the Sundance Resort for the past several years.  Seeing a musical in the mountains is always a great way to beat the summer heat.  We have seen The Sound of Music (Marilyn sang along with the actors), Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, and Annie Get Your Gun.  Marilyn and I may or may not have squealed when we found out they are doing Fiddler on the Roof this year.  Go here for tickets.
The Utah Symphony also makes an appearance at the Sundance Resort.  Near the Fourth of July they perform a program featuring patriotic music (think John Philips Sousa).  I took my cousin Merry to this concert last year and we both enjoyed it.  I'm thinking of going again.  Go here for more information.

Red Butte Garden Outdoor Concert Series
Red Butte Garden is an amazing venue for outdoor concerts.  This picture is from the Crosby, Stills, & Nash concert in 2012, which was fabulous (even though I was probably the youngest person there).  This year I am going to see Natalie Cole and I am really excited about it.  Go here to check out this year's lineup and to purchase tickets (many shows are already sold out because members have priority to purchase tickets before the general public).

With all of these amazing events to look forward to, maybe I can make it through these next few weeks until summer vacation.  Maybe.
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