Pep Club rewarded for supporting school
So, it's like this: Attend 17 school sporting events - for free - and get a day out of school to play arcade games, drive bumper cars and hang out with friends.
Oh, and that's free, too.
Such was the case for 57 Lansing Middle School Pep Club members.
Mindy Newby, Pep Club sponsor, said the purpose of the club was to support the school's athletic teams. Students pay a fee at the beginning of the year and in return get into any LMS sporting event for free.
As a reward for cheering on the Lions, Newby said, students received gifts for attending games. For seven games, it was candy bags. For 12, a pizza party. And students who had been to 17 sporting events throughout the year got to go to Power Play Family Entertainment Center in Shawnee, a complex filled with activities including laser tag, Dance Dance Revolution, a tilt-a-whirl and an all-you-can-eat pizza buffet.
The students attended Power Play on Thursday, May 4.
But how did they get this plan past the LMS principal, Kerry Brungardt?
"I think Mr. Brungardt is not against having people be rewarded for good things that they do," said eighth-grader Chelsea Weeks, Pep Club president.
Weeks said Pep Club members not only attended games but also helped to start cheers and asked classmates to settle down if they were out of line. The club also runs the concession stand at home games and school dances.
Newby further explained that the Pep Club uses the money it earns from concessions not only for the reward trip but also to pay for upgrades to the athletic facilities. Last year, the club helped to buy a public address system and a picnic table for the football field, she said. This year, the club plans to have the concession stand painted.
Plus, Newby said, students weren't excused from the school work they would miss on the trip - they had to get assignments ahead of time.
"I think they were willing to make it up to be able to go," she said.
Last year, the club attended a Kansas City Royals baseball game on "Student Day at the K," Newby said. However, Student Day this year conflicted with the LMS Fine Arts Fair.
That led to a somewhat heated debate over what activity should replace it, Weeks said. Two club members suggested Power Play, but not many students had been there. Weeks said her idea was lunch and a movie.
Power Play won the club's vote, to Weeks' disappointment.
In the end, though, Weeks said Power Play was better than the Royals game. Power Play is an indoor facility, so the students didn't get hot or sunburned, and Newby could keep an eye on students more easily, she said.