Singers Selected for 2017 All-State Choir

music-2618342_1280Eight singers from Dell Rapids and four singers from Dell Rapids St Mary have been selected for the 2017 All-State Chorus and Orchestra performance.  This year’s concert will be held on Saturday, October 28th at 7:00 p.m. at the Denny Sanford Premier Center in Sioux Falls.

Kathryn Fletcher, Amy Meyer, Sydney Stofferahn, Mercedes Lodmell, Alec Saxon, Andrew Weiland, Thomas Petrik, and Peyton Gleason have been selected to participate from Dell Rapids.  Morgan Brech, Abby Stauffenecker, and Riley Nyman were selected as alternates.  Participates from Dell Rapids St Mary are Courtney Geraets, Paige Bunkers, Noah Dennis, and Jon Bares.

This year’s guest conductor is Dr. Tim Seelig from San Francisco, CA.  Seelig is a conductor, singer, teacher, and motivational speaker.

Tickets for the concert are $19.00 for adult and student reserved section, $14.00 for adult general admission, or $8.00 for student general admission.

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Dell Rapids St Mary Students Sing at Gift of Hope Concert

Five Dell Rapids St Mary students joined other students from the Catholic Diocese of Sioux Falls to sin in the Gift of Hope Concert.

Avery Carder, Paige Bunkers, Ella Swift, Lucy Swift, and Danika Deuter sang in the concert which was held on Sunday, March 19th, at Sioux Falls O’Gorman High School.  The students also had the opportunity to sing with Christian artist Mark Schultz on stage for the last two songs of the concert.

Proceeds from the concert went to the Catholic Family Services’ Gift of Hope Fund to help enhance the work of CFS.  Through this fund, people of all faiths, ages, and walks of life receive help, hope, and healing with services such as grief counseling, adoption, and many others.

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St Mary Cardinals Season of Giving

Story and photos submitted by Joni Smith

stmaryseasongiving_1December is a time of year that many us remember how blessed our lives our everyday.  It is also a time that we remember to give back to those who are not always so lucky everyday.  The students and families at St. Mary Catholic School have been very busy giving back to those in our community and in surrounding communities during this month.

The season of giving started the week of December 5th thru the 9th. Students in both the elementary and high school competed in a Penny War.  Each students brought pennies and other coins or cash to put in their own class’s collection bucket or in another class’s bucket.  Pennies counted as positive points for their class, but anything else counted as negative points.  The goal by the end of the week was to have the more pennies than anyone else.  It was a close stmaryseasongiving_2competition but the winners of the Penny War ( the class with the most pennies) was the Kindergarten for the Elementary School and the 9th Graders in the High School.  However, the winners for collecting the most money in their bucket was the 3rd graders with $130.64 and the 7th graders with $268.79 in their bucket.   All together $796.55 was raised in one week by all the students!  This money will stay in Dell Rapids and go to the Christmas For Our Kids Organization, and will help buy Christmas gifts and meals to those who need it in Dell Rapids.

St. Mary students in grades 7-12 collected new baby items as part of the annual diocesan Advent Baby Shower. More than 50 students donated diapers, sleepers, baby care items, onesies and toys for needy families.   All of the collected items will be given to needy families within the Dell Rapids community.

stmaryseasongiving_3If these letters were handed in by Friday, December 9th, Macy’s would donate $2 per letter.  Overall, students wrote over 170  letters and over $350 was raised for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Thank you to Macy’s and to all those that wrote letters to Santa!

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The giving didn’t stop though.  On December 14th, students in Pre-K through twelve gathered in their Cardinal Families and spent about an hour cutting, tying, and making Fleece-Tie Blankets.  Students and teachers made and donated these fleece blankets to local residents of nursing homes in Dell Rapids and local homeless shelters in our diocese.  Overall 16 blankets were made by everyone in about 40 minutes.

The giving didn’t stop in our community though, the students at St. Mary School even gave back to their school.  On the last stmaryseasongiving_5day of school before students were set free to enjoy their Christmas Break, students and teachers in grades 7-12 cleaned the school, gym, and church.  Students scrubbed the top and bottoms of the bleachers in the gym, cleaned and organized the stage, washed lunchroom tables and chairs, washed windows, glass doors and trophy cases, cleaned church pews, disinfected computer keyboards, moved sidewalk salt to the garage, and tidied up the entire school before break.  The students then celebrated their successful cleaning day with a movie in the gym.

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The students at St. Mary Catholic school are a great reminder that there are many great things that young ones can do.  The entire school and staff constantly are giving back to everyone in their community and  had a very successful month of giving.

 

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St Mary Students Participate in Band Festival

On Monday, November 28, 2016, three St. Mary High School Senior Band members traveled to the campus of South Dakota State University to participate in the 20th Annual East Central Honor Band Festival. Lexi Klein, Senior Clarinet player, and Spencer Thompson, Senior Percussion player, were both in the East Central Honor Band conducted by James McKinney.  Senior Baritone player, Zachary Geraets, was in the the East Central Festival Band conducted by Dr. Keven Kessler. Students practiced all day at SDSU, and then performed in a concert at the Performing Arts Center on the campus.

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Two Local Students Honored for Academic Excellence

The best and brightest from the Class of 2016 were honored for their academic achievements at the 26th Annual Academic Excellence Banquet in Pierre on Monday, May 2nd.

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In conjunction with Governor Dennis Daugaard, the Associated School Boards of South Dakota invited more than 200 students, who were identified  as the top one percent of their senior class, from the state’s public, private, and tribal schools to celebrate their academic accomplishments.  Bridget Dunn from Dell Rapids St Mary and Josh Parrott from Dell Rapids Public were two of the students invited.

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“Today we celebrate excellence,” ASBSD President Eric Stroeder said.  “These students represent the best and brightest from South Dakota.”

“You are the future of South Dakota.  We hope you will stay in South Dakota and become the next generation of leaders for our state.”

Governor Daugaard shared Stroeder’s sentiment and encouraged students to stay in South Dakota.

“The prospects for young graduates in South Dakota are better than anywhere else,” Governor Daugaard said.  “Your dreams can come true in South Dakota.”

Prospects and dreams made possible by the hard work the students have put forth.

“You motivated yourself to learn more and more,” Governor Daugaard said.  “That’s something special.  You’re something special.”

The event was sponsored by the South Dakota Community Foundation.  The Mobridge-Pollock High School Band provided the musical entertainment.

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Dell Rapids St Mary Recognized as an “Outstanding Student Council”

2016DRSMStudentCouncilThe South Dakota High School Activities Association (SDHSAA) recently announced that 30 South Dakota high school student councils have been recognized as being “Outstanding Student Councils” for the 2015-16 school year.  This is the 26th year that this statewide program has been sponsored by the SDHSAA to recognize those South Dakota high school student council’s that meet or exceed the rigorous standards of excellence that are necessary to achieve the “Outstanding Student Council” designation.  “Outstanding Councils” excel in having a well-rounded program of activities and projects for the year.  The work completed by these “Outstanding Student Councils” has been a benefit to both their school and their community throughout the school year.

The major focus of the “SDHSAA Outstanding Student Council” program consists of each participating student council completing a self-evaluation of their organizational structure and their successful completion of projects in a variety of areas.  The evaluation also considers the involvement of the student council in their school and community. It is the intention of the High School Activities Association to recognize those student councils that meet the stringent standards and criteria demanded by this program.  The thirty student councils that have been recognized with this year’s ‘Outstanding’ designation are each well organized and highly motivated.  These student councils have met the rigorous standards necessary to be called ‘Outstanding’. The self-evaluation focuses upon the structure of the student council as well as the positive involvement of the student council in the activities of their school and community.

To be recognized as an “Outstanding Student Council” every council was involved in various projects in the areas of “Community and School Service”, “Health, Safety or Chemical Awareness”, “Education”, “Leadership” and others. Completion of projects in a wide range of areas was necessary to fulfill a variety of goals for the student council. Each school receiving the “SDHSAA Outstanding Student Council” award has demonstrated a desire for self-improvement and individual growth by participating in leadership workshops and conventions as well as other educational programs.

Some of the projects the Dell Rapids St Mary Student Council has completed this year include:
~ planning and organizing all Homecoming activities, along with Olympic Games & a Powder Puff Football game
~ sponsoring dress up days for Red Ribbon Week
~ hosting two dances during the year
~ organizing Secret Santa during Christmas
~ organized an Elf for a Day contest to raise money for Christmas for our Kids
~ host a Pajamarama for the elementary students during Catholic Schools Week
~ sponsor a week long food drive during Catholic Schools Week for the local food pantry
~ have Brownie Sundae fundraisers to raise money for the Children’s Miracle Network
~ run a lunch stand and had a hoop shoot contest during basketball games to raise money for a new water fountain for our school
~ provided free babysitting & worked in the concession stands during our SFO fall craft fair
~ sponsor activities for Alcohol Awareness during Prom Week
~ provide gifts to our teachers during teacher appreciation week

The 2015-16 “SDHSAA Outstanding Student Council” Award recipients are:

  • Aberdeen Central High School, Advisor – Kevin Rook
  • Bennett County High School, Advisor – Mandi Smokov
  • Bowdle High School, Advisor – Jason Bishop
  • Canton High School, Advisor – Nicole Nelson
  • Dakota Valley High School, Advisor – James Schmit/Kim Bacon
  • Dell Rapids St Mary High School, Advisor – Cami Bacon
  • Edgemont High School, Advisor – Scott Corbett
  • Estelline High School, Advisor – Julie Rieckman
  • Faith High School, Advisor – Deanna Fischbach
  • Henry High School, Advisor – Philip Schonebaum
  • Herreid High School, Advisor – Janelle Rossow
  • Huron High School, Advisor – Becca Briggs
  • Lead-Deadwood High School, Advisor – Gary Linn
  • Lemmon High School, Advisor – Linda O’Donnell
  • Lennox High School, Advisor – Madeline Kroger
  • Lyman High School, Advisor – Carol Birgen
  • McCook Central High School, Advisor – Tracy Chase
  • Milbank High School, Advisor – Kathy Sussex & Nancy Paulson
  • Mitchell High School, Advisor – Nancy Leach
  • Philip High School, Advisor – Pamela DeJong
  • Pierre T.F. Riggs High School, Advisor – Brittany Green & Bob Gill
  • Sioux Falls Lincoln High School, Advisor – Jennifer DuBois
  • Sioux Falls Roosevelt High School, Advisor – Michele Jensen & Kari Bultje
  • Sioux Falls Washington High School, Advisor – Sandy Hoff & Kristy VanMeerteren
  • Sully Buttes High School, Advisor – Wanda Meyer
  • Summit High School, Advisor – Nicole Hoffman
  • Vermillion High School, Advisor – Paige Chapman
  • Wall High School, Advisor – Ronda Wilson
  • Winner High School, Advisor – Mono LaCompte & Lorna Phillips
  • Yankton High School, Advisor – Becky Tasa
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Dell Rapids Students Celebrate Veteran’s Day

Students from Dell Rapids Public and Dell Rapids St Mary schools spent the day celebrating Veteran’s Day.

Dell Rapids Middle and High School held their program at 9:00 a.m. at the high school gym.  Veteran’s Day poems were read by 5th grade students Sam Schmitt, Zach Heinemann, and Callista Xavier.  The Dell Rapids High School band and choir performed during the ceremony, and Morgan Kistler presented a service project to the veterans.

The Dell Rapids St Mary program was held at 10:00 a.m. at the Dell Rapids St Mary High 2015VeteransDay_1School gym.  The St Mary program included a slide show of all the relatives of St  Mary students with their branch of service and where they served.

The Dell Rapids Elementary School program was held at 1:45 p.m. at the elementary 2015VeteransDay_2school gym.  All the elementary students participated by singing songs throughout the program.

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October is National High School Activities Month

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (September 20, 2012) — The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) has designated the month of October as National High School Activities Month to help schools throughout the nation promote the values inherent in high school athletic and performing arts activities.

Started in 1980 as National High School Activities Week, the NFHS expanded the celebration to a month last year to provide additional time for the 19,000-plus high schools to hold special activities at the local level.

“National High School Activities Month is an opportunity to remind the public that already in place in every community is a comprehensive program addressing society’s most current concerns,” said Elliot Hopkins, NFHS director of sports and educational services.

Hopkins noted that high school activities help meet these issues by:

  • Finding and nurturing the best effort of each young participant;
  • Encouraging students to stay in school, perform better academically and become better citizens;
  • Demanding respect for fair play and appreciation for the equitable application of procedures, rules and regulations;
  • Providing healthy lifestyle instruction; and
  • Challenging racism, sexism and classism through the active pursuit of teamwork and school spirit.

Four specific-emphasis weeks are planned within the month-long celebration: National Sportsmanship and Fan Appreciation Week (October 1-6), National Performing Arts Activities Week (October 8-13), National Coaches/Sponsors/Advisors/Officials Week (October 15-20) and National Community Service/Youth Awareness Week (October 22-27).

“High school sports and activity programs provide one of the best bargains in our community and nation and will continue to do so as long as our nation supports them as an integral part of the education of our young people,” said Bob Gardner, NFHS executive director. “Not only do these programs teach the more than 11 million young people who participate in them valuable life skills lessons, such as ethics, integrity and healthy lifestyles, they also provide the best entertainment value in our nation.”

The NFHS has provided suggested activities for schools during each of the week-long events. All materials for National High School Activities Month, including The Case for High School Activities, are available on the NFHS Web site at www.nfhs.org (About NFHS/About Us Resources/2012 National High School Activities Month Materials).

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About the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS)

The NFHS, based in Indianapolis, Indiana, is the national leadership organization for high school sports and performing arts activities. Since 1920, the NFHS has led the development of education-based interscholastic sports and performing arts activities that help students succeed in their lives. The NFHS sets direction for the future by building awareness and support, improving the participation experience, establishing consistent standards and rules for competition, and helping those who oversee high school sports and activities. The NFHS writes playing rules for 17 sports for boys and girls at the high school level. Through its 50 member state associations and the District of Columbia, the NFHS reaches more than 19,000 high schools and 11 million participants in high school activity programs, including more than 7.6 million in high school sports. As the recognized national authority on interscholastic activity programs, the NFHS conducts national meetings; sanctions interstate events; offers online publications and services for high school coaches and officials; sponsors professional organizations for high school coaches, officials, speech and debate coaches, and music adjudicators; serves as the national source for interscholastic coach training; and serves as a national information resource of interscholastic athletics and activities. For more information, visit the NFHS Web site at www.nfhs.org.

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