Facebook “Adopt a Redlands Senior” group recognizes high school seniors with gifts

Originally published in La Plaza Press

By MIA ARANDA

No Homecoming or Prom. No school rallies. No fall Friday night football games. No concerts, plays, or sporting events. No painting student parking spots. No college acceptance celebration days. No paper toss. No end-of-the-year trip to an amusement park. It may be possible that seniors not experience an in-person graduation this year.

Class of 2021 high school seniors are facing the inevitable loss of their last year of high school. For them, this year is supposed to be remembered as a once-in-a-lifetime experience to cherish moments with friends and classmates before they all take on different paths following graduation. However, given the different circumstances imposed by the pandemic, seniors are forced to trudge through the year via distance learning without the in-person connections formed or developed with friends and teachers. 

Redlands High School senior Linda Estrada said, “It impacts mental health because it is stressful to try to teach yourself a lesson you didn’t comprehend in class and when it comes up to that quiz or test you feel uneasy because you don’t know if you taught yourself the correct way to do it.”

To incite positivity for these high school seniors, Marci Atkins, mother of a senior at Redlands High School, started a Facebook group titled Adopt a Redlands Senior. This event is open to any seniors enrolled in RHS, Redlands East Valley, Citrus Valley, Orangewood, the Grove, and Redlands eAcademy. Parents of the class of 2021 seniors are encouraged to post about their seniors where they tell the group about them along with a photo. Anyone else is welcome to read their post and comment if they would like to “adopt” them. By doing so, they commit to compiling a goodie basket or gift bag to deliver to their adopted senior’s house. 

With more than 200 people in the group, seniors have received overwhelming support through the delivery of gifts from people they didn’t even know. 

“I was surprised and very thankful,” said CV senior Destiny Shaughnessy, who received a blanket, car freshener, candle, bracelet and some candy in her gift bag.

“I think this helps seniors because they have worked hard and struggled to get to graduation,” said CV senior Azul Amaro. “Every senior/student has obstacles not just in school but in life as well and I think that with a small/big gift it can make a senior’s day, week, or month better.”

Amaro received a gift basket with a large assortment of items: a sketchbook, some sketching pencils, some fuzzy blue socks, a mermaid reef candle, a 2021 magnetic calendar, a blue glittery scrunchie, some candy and a bath bomb.

Estrada said, “It gave me a boost of confidence knowing people see what we are going through as seniors.”

Redlands High School senior Laura Estrada with a gift basket on Nov. 14. Estrada received a makeup palette, gift cards to Starbucks and Taco Bell, some scrunchies, face masks, and nail polishes from Sergio Vazquez, parent of a Citrus Valley high school senior. (Courtesy of Laura Estrada)

Anyone wanting to adopt a senior can find all the information through Marci Atkin’s FaceBook group “Adopt a Redlands Senior.” Even small gestures, such as flowers, balloons, or a card, truly brighten up seniors’ days. All people are encouraged to participate and appreciated greatly for making this year’s seniors feel special given these unique circumstances. 

Redlands Unified School District plans to hold the multi-school Genesis dance

By EMILY WALOS

(infographic courtesy of Citrus Valley website)

On February 28, students of all grades from Citrus Valley High School, eAcademy, Grove High School, Orangewood High School, Redlands East Valley High School, Redlands High School and RISE Program will attend a multi-school, multi-stage dance called Genesis held at the Yucaipa Performing Arts Center.

The dance will not only include multiple dance floors with several DJs, but also activities such as rock climbing, karaoke, arcade games, human foosball, caricatures and a chill lounge that are all fully included with the ticket purchase. 

Genesis’s doors will open at 7 p.m. however lines are expected and the dance will conclude at 11 p.m.

Before purchasing a ticket, students must turn in an additional waiver with the standard dance permission slips. This waiver allows students to participate in the rock climbing activities. 

The dress code for the dance is casual attire, however the school dress code still applies. Students are encouraged to dress warmly or in layers as the event has activities both indoors and outdoors. 

Students will be able to enter the dance by showing their student ID at the entrance as it will serve as their ticket. Re-entry to the dance once outside the doors will not be permitted.

This event that includes all of the RUSD schools is traditionally held once a year. However, it was not held the previous 2018-2019 school year, therefore this 2019-2020 school year is the dance’s comeback year.

Redlands eAcademy hosts another successful Fall Festival

By MADISON ISAEFF

 

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Redlands eAcademy principal David Finley participates in the Fall Fest fun. Photo by MADISON ISAEFF

ASB created several fall-themed games for all guests to play, such as a “Scarecrow Toss” with rings and scarecrow dolls, a cake walk with Halloween themed pastries, a “Ping Pong Pumpkin” game or “Cornhole.” They even put together a fun scavenger hunt where students took pictures with several different people dressed up in costumes to earn special prizes or more sweets. For other games, students were able to collect treat bags filled with candy for winning or for just having fun. Everyone participated in the events, even eAcademy’s principal, David Finley. He hopped through the air to compete against teachers and kids in a sack race called the “Trash Dash.”

The festival consisted of not only entertaining games and activities but also ended the night with an indoor dance with a DJ for all grades to enjoy. Everyone who came was encouraged to dress up in Halloween costumes, so eAcademy held a costume contest before the night finally ended. They recognized the best-dressed and most creative kids that won treat bags of candy and Halloween-themed prizes. There were original costumes like a jellyfish, a Star Wars character, a soldier, a nymph, and many others. After the awards and a few more songs, students returned home with their bags full of candy and smiles on their faces.

 

ASB created several fall-themed games for all guests to play, such as a “Scarecrow Toss” with rings and scarecrow dolls, a cake walk with Halloween themed pastries, a “Ping Pong Pumpkin” game or “Cornhole.” They even put together a fun scavenger hunt where students took pictures with several different people dressed up in costumes to earn special prizes or more sweets. For other games, students were able to collect treat bags filled with candy for winning or for just having fun. Everyone participated in the events, even eAcademy’s principal, David Finley. He hopped through the air to compete against teachers and kids in a sack race called the “Trash Dash.”

The festival consisted of not only entertaining games and activities but also ended the night with an indoor dance with a DJ for all grades to enjoy. Everyone who came was encouraged to dress up in Halloween costumes, so eAcademy held a costume contest before the night finally ended. They recognized the best-dressed and most creative kids that won treat bags of candy and Halloween-themed prizes. There were original costumes like a jellyfish, a Star Wars character, a soldier, a nymph, and many others. After the awards and a few more songs, students returned home with their bags full of candy and smiles on their faces.