MRHS Seasons of Scarlett looks different, feels the sameDec 03, 2020 02:53PM ● By Jet Burnham
In December 2019, student leaders prepare to collect money for charity. (Photo courtesy Richard Hoonakker/MRHS)
By Jet Burnham | [email protected]
Season of Scarlet is the December charity drive at Mountain Ridge High School. Last year, student government officers planned fundraising activities that would become traditions for the new school. However, because most of the activities from last year must be altered or replaced to meet public safety measures, this year’s charity season will look different than last year.
“It’s been a little rough because we start planning an event only to have it shut down,” senior class secretary Sydney Muir said. “But we all really want to help these kids so we just keep trying. We have had to make a lot of plan A’s and B’s and C’s, and we are always adapting our plans to make sure we keep everyone safe, while still creating a successful charity season.”
Some activities have stayed the same. Season of Scarlett merchandise (sweats, hoodies, hats), which yielded a big profit last year, is on sale now. Local restaurants will be hosting spirit nights with a percentage of the nights profits going to Season of Scarlett.
New ideas are still in development: a student raffle and a drive-thru hot cocoa bar.
Many activities have been adapted. The kickoff assembly, when the name of the charity is announced and students learn about what kinds of activities are planned, is part of the fundraiser this year. Limited groups of students will be allowed to attend the assembly, socially spaced, for a fee.
Community interactive activities, such as Odd Jobs, in which students comb the neighborhood to perform acts of service and collect donations, will be adapted to meet whatever public safety restrictions are in place at the time of the event.
“We probably wouldn't be able to do Odd Jobs, but we're still talking about it to see if we can get that working,” SBO president Sarah Lingwall said. “If not, then we're hoping to be able to send out emails to people with the link to where they can donate.”
Announcements for Season of Scarlett events, and notifications of changes, will be posted on the school’s Instagram @mrhs.sentinels.
The money raised this year is for the Millie's Princess Foundation and local families who are dealing with childhood cancer.
Muri hopes that, as they did last year, students will be able to meet the families and hear their inspiring stories.
“I think if the students can see where their money is going, they will be excited to help the families,” she said.
While Seasons of Scarlett may look different this year, student leaders hope it doesn’t feel different.
“Last year, the feeling and the focus that we had on serving the people in our community—that was the biggest thing for me,” Lingwall said. “That just makes me want to do it even more, just for that feeling and to help serve the people who need it—especially now, because of COVID that makes everything harder on everybody. So, I think especially now they need that help and so we want to do that for them.”
Student leaders worked hard to fill the school with festive decorations to remind students that while it is different this year, it is still charity season.
“Even though these don’t raise any money, we think it is important to build the morale of our student body, especially this year,” Muir said. “We’ve all had a rough time these past couple of months, but the joy of the Christmas season can really brighten our lives. We hope that we can bring a spirit of giving into our school to give every student that light that they may have been missing.”
Students are aware that, at any time, everything could be cancelled. However, they remain hopefully optimistic. MRHS switched to virtual instruction for two weeks before Thanksgiving in an attempt to reduce COVID-19 cases.
“We're hoping that these two weeks bring all of our cases down and will make it so we can stay [in school] the few weeks in December,” Lingwall said. “We’re crossing our fingers.”