Seniors shine during events at Homecoming

The seniors showed them how it's done.

Experience won out, despite an earnest freshman class effort, in last week's Homecoming Week inter-class competition.

The freshmen topped the pie-eating contest, but the seniors shone in the Dress-Up days and hallway decorations. The Class of 2002 prevailed in week-long scoring, with 975 points to the juniors' 730, sophomores' 680, and ninth-graders' 620.

Hundreds of students competed during Homecoming Week events as a way to generate school spirit. The week culminated in Saturday's dance, attended by 600 students.

For Dress-Up Days, the highlights were pajamas day and '80s day.

"There was a lot of spandex and eye-shadow," senior Lesley Tamura said of '80s day.

In the float competition, sophomores and juniors tied for first and freshmen took second. The floats went on display at Friday's parade in the Heights.

The juniors prevailed in the much-awaited air guitar competition, in which costumes, antics and props accompany medleys of tape rock-n-roll music. The juniors paid tribute to dead musicians ranging from Frank Sinatra to Nirvana. The staff took second, followed by the seniors.

The juniors also raised the most money in the week-long coin drive for American Red Cross, with $173. (See related story, this page.)

The hall-decorating event gave the seniors a chance to out-decorate their youngers and display plenty of patriotism at the same time. They chose the theme of "Red White and Blue."

"We put flyers on lockers saying "American pride," and there was a large picture of a peace sign -- blue with gold stars and red and white stripes," Tamura said. "We got a lot of compliments on that." Students also created a 9-11-01 banner, and signs with the names of all 50 states.

The freshmen took second with their theme of Outer Space.

"The freshmen did really well for taking second. They usually take last," Tamura said.

Wednesday night brought the annual bonfire -- a smaller pile of wood was allowed this year because of fire concerns -- and games at Henderson Stadium. The juniors won the pie-eating contest, the seniors won the truck-pushing contest, as well as the tug-of-war and a relay in which contestants ran to the middle of the field, knelt and turned a baseball bat 360 degrees -- with their noses.

As Tamura put it, "it was a very eventful full week, and now everyone's exhausted."

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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