As the 2018/2019 school year comes to a close, Thomas Jefferson High School celebrates the students and community as a whole with fun events for all to enjoy.
It has been an incredible year full of hard work and challenges for almost everyone in the TJ community. Staff members, students, and parents alike are all excited for the end of yet another amazing school year. As part of the traditions here at TJ, the school hosted the annual events of the Talent Show and Backyard Bash.
The diverse amount of talents within the TJ community was on full display at the annual Talent Show. The Talent Show is an exciting TJ tradition that allows students to showcase their skills and passions on stage. Tambyr Reed, the choir teacher here at TJ, was in charge of organizing the entire talent show this year. From the auditions to the final rehearsals, students worked incredibly hard to perfect their acts. Junior host and performer Deyazahre Marshall said, “It was fun seeing the people with the flashlights [during her performance] and making people laugh by just interacting and talking to the crowd.”
The performers this year truly delivered a spectacular show. To name a few, teacher Katie Fitzgerald enticed the audience with her traditional Irish step dancing and Marshall serenaded the crowd with her version of Rihanna’s “Love on the Brain.” There were also performances from TJ’s Jazz Band who covered Chicago’s “25 Or 6 To 4” and junior Wendie Ventola who shredded it on bass. Finally, the show finished off with junior Jazz Wright who demonstrated her hip hop isolation mastery. All in all, it was a true showcase of the diverse, talented TJ Spartans in this community. Hopefully even more students and staff will have the courage to step out and perform next year!
The Backyard Bash was a final hurrah for students at TJ. Taking place on senior checkout day, it was an opportunity for everyone to hang out, have fun, and say some goodbyes. It was the perfect time to get people to sign yearbooks before parting ways for the summer. With seniors going on to college, both in state and out of state, the Backyard Bash was a great moment and one last fun tradition with them. It also let teachers and staff get out of their stuffy classrooms and out into the sunshine to relax.
This year, the Backyard Bash hosted a variety of fun activities and good food. It boasted volleyball games, kickball, a bouncy obstacle course, and music picked by the students. Teachers milled about, enjoying the break from classes, and students ran around hugging friends. Kids everywhere were saying goodbye to each other and yearbooks spread around groups of friends like wildfire. The yearbooks are really important, especially to seniors, because it lets them take a slice of their TJ community out into the world with them. “These notes will be nice and nostalgic to look at if I ever get a little homesick at college,” says graduating senior Hunter Wall.
All in all, these two special TJ traditions provided a fun and impressive end to the 2018/2019 school year. Senior checkout day was a relieving and yet difficult time for a lot of people because for seniors, it is an era of their life coming to a close, and for their friends as underclassmen, it is a melancholy goodbye. While the events were slightly bittersweet as they marked the end of the year, they are also a great reminder of all the great talent and the loving community TJ has to offer. See you next year for even more fun and good times Spartans!