I attended the first ever Battle of the Classes event on Friday night at Millburn High School, and it was, by far, the most student spirit I have ever seen within the confines of MHS.
Not a basketball game, not a football game.... but at a student fundraising event.
The battle was coordinated by the SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions) Club, and was the culminating event of this year's Spirit Week, organized by class officers.
In homeroom, students selected the six girls and six boys they wanted to represent their classes at the battle, and over the past few weeks, the 12 selected representatives for each class practiced and rehearsed diligently in preparation for the big night, which consisted of about a dozen events including tug-of-war, egg toss, three-legged race, foot races, a spontaneous thinking puzzle, pie-eating contests, and the big event: an original choreographed lip-sync dance.
The battle began with the National Anthem by the MHS Chorale, followed by an original dance performance by MHS dance students. MHS dance instructor Arvin Arjona was the MC, and teachers Ann Thoroman, James Bridgeman, Melissa Clinton and Jacqueline Finnegan were the judges.
In the end, the juniors, my class, the Class of 2013, emerged victorious. The juniors won the dance, the battle events and were declared the ultimate winner of Spirit Week (which included hall decorations, five distinct dress-up days, coat drives, coin/donation wars, and more). Half the money (amounting to more than $500) will go to the class to fund future class events, like Junior Prom. The other half is kept by SADD to fund future awareness campaigns.
Throughout the night, the hundred-plus members of certain classes in attendance could be heard chanting loudly for their respective grades. The juniors donned the famous "I Believe That We Will Win" cheer, while the seniors got creative, exclaiming after the junior victory, "That's alright, that's okay, we're in college anyway"!
SADD is led by Alyssa Weinstein, Rebecca Okrent, James Kiselik, Ms. Jenny Manis, and Mr. Chris Hanzeley.
Class officers are (freshmen) Carly Maitlin, Isabel Miller, Jillian Berkowitz, Miranda Kasher, Ms. Gina Cocchiaro, and Dr. Paul Gilmore; (sophomores) Stephanie Chen-Schmidt, Emma Finkel, Sarah Gomez, Josh Hochman, Dr. Regina Conlon, and Mrs. Michelle Rosenthal; (juniors) Justin Dower, Scott Myers, Brian Zahka, Michael Lieberberg, and Sra. Viviana Canizales; and (seniors) Ray Holloway, Eric Hertz, Drew Rosenberg, Steven Magee, and Sra. Maria Vazquez.
The first annual battle was a success, fostering an unprecedented level of student spirit. The battle is destined to be an MHS tradition for years to come.