Red Ribbon Week Marked at Local Schools
Both the Rector and Piggott schools marked Red Ribbon Week the final week of October, spreading the message of living drug-free.
For the 27th year in a row, Piggott Elementary School marked Red Ribbon Week the final week of October. This year the theme for the week was "United We Stand Against Bullying and Drugs."
In keeping with tradition, a variety of observances were scheduled for the week including the annual Red Ribbon Rally, held Monday, Oct. 27, on the playground of PES.
Despite somewhat windy conditions, the students, teachers, parents and staff gathered on the playground for the annual rally. After hearing a welcome from PES principal Leann Mann, the students took part in one of their favorite parts of the week, the annual balloon launch.
Once again this year local distributor Aerial Bouquets provided the latex balloons for the launch, along with the ribbon and a cylinder of helium. Mann offered her thanks to Missy Norred, Annette Hill, Christy Cox, Barbara Collier, Denise Newbill and Mona Scott for their assistance inflating the balloons, and working on the tags with the children's names.
Afterward, those on hand recited the Pledge of Allegiance, and heard the Star Spangled Banner performed by members of the award winning Piggott Marching Mohawk band. The schedule also included a performance of the song "Fifty Nifty United States" with music instructor Ellen Meadows directing the students of the fifth and sixth grades. The Marching Mohawks also performed "Our Boys" to the delight of the crowd.
Afterward, the winners of the annual coloring and essay contests were announced, and the top essay winners from each class read their entry aloud.
This year's coloring contest winners included--Jaden Threat from Mrs. Andrea's ABC class; Jayden Collier from Ms. Jo's ABC class; Faye Cardenas from Mrs. Marilyn's ABC class; Jasmine Warbritton from Mrs. Jessica's kindergarten class; Kyle Hunter from Mrs. Nikki's kindergarten class; Brody West from Mrs. Hope's kindergarten class; Destiny Davidson from Ms. Pam's first grade class; Christopher Bautista from Mrs. Vanessa's first grade class; Molly Hopple from Ms. Marissa's first grade class; Kendra Redmon from Mrs. Katrina's first grade class; Kaylee Blurton from Ms. Veda's second grade class; William Lucas from Mrs. Shelby's second grade class and Alexis Dickens from Mrs. Laura's second grade class.
Each of the students received a $2 cash prize, provided by and handed out by Paula Blackwell, representing Piggott Community Sharing Hearts. Blackwell also handed out prizes to the classroom winners in the essay contest, which included--Devan Hobbs in Ms. Tammy's third grade class; Ava Baggett in Mrs. Heather's third grade class; Natalie Blake in Mrs. Debbie's fourth grade class; Emma Langley in Mrs. Cassie's fourth grade class; Ashley Fenton in Mrs. Tonya's fifth grade class; Emma Gossett in Mrs. Sherri's fifth grade class; Shalyn Parrish in Mrs. Veleda's sixth grade class and Sebastian Frazier in Mrs. Amber's sixth grade class.
The overall essay contest winners from each class were then announced, and received a $10 prize from Blackwell and Piggott Community Sharing Hearts. This year's winners included-Kade Johnson from Mrs. Carol's third grade class, Jake Smart from Mrs. Jennifer's fourth grade class, Summer Pollard from Mrs. Vickie's fifth grade class and Emma Graddy from Mrs. Cobi's sixth grade class.
The winning essays were then read-aloud by the students, as they spread the message of taking a stand against drugs and bullying.
A variety of guest speakers were also featured, including Patrolman Jeremi Wicker and Patrolman Sam Poole of the Piggott Police Department, along with acting mayor Ramona Magee and mayor-elect Jim Poole. Meanwhile, this year's keynote speaker was Chris Brantley, pastor of the First General Baptist Church of Piggott.
During the rally the students were also treated to performances by the peewee cheerleaders, the PHS junior and senior high cheerleaders and the Marching Mohawk drum line.
Mann also took a moment to recognize PES students Will Vancil and Jake Smart, winners of the fourth grade Youth Power tee shirt design contest.
Students at Rector Elementary united in support of living their lives free from drug abuse during last week's Red Ribbon Week celebration. The week-long event included a series of fun and educational events, each carrying encouragement to avoid the perils of drug use.
Each day of the week had a theme, allowing students to show their individual support through "dress up days." The spirited participation ramped up the excitement surrounding the annual event while reinforcing healthy coices.
Gifted and Talented coordinator and event sponsor Lance Mabrey also offered several contests for students to show their support for Red Ribbon Week. Students in kindergarten and first grade took part in a coloring contest, while those in the second through fourth grade created posters and fifth and sixth grade students wrote essays sharing their thoughts. Winners in the events were: Kindergarten--Thomas Stultz, Anniston Scott and Jillian Lopez. First grade--Jayle Lopez, Breanna Green and Brayden Thompson. Second grade--Emma Holmes, Hayden Vavak and Hailey Brown. Third grade--Landon Archer, Ashton Scott and Zoey Prince. Fourth grade--Landon Haywood and Audrey Schimming. Fifth grade--Lacey Undewrwood and Hayley Naney. Sixth grade--Zoey Blount and Emily Stirnaman.
Thursday's parade and rally was a high mark of the week. All students gathered to take part in a parade around the block, led by Rector Police Department Chief of Police Glen Leach and the RHS Marching Cougars. Each class created banners to carry in Thursday's rally and parade. The high spirits of the students and positive message shown make the rally and parade truly special each year.
"It was a great week," Mabrey said. "The kids did outstanding jobs on their essays, coloring contests and posters. I am proud of the good choices our students have made and hope they remember Red Ribbon Week every week and continue to make those same good choices down the road. They've had a lot of fun, but they've also learned about the dangers involved with drug abuse, too."
All of the RES faculty and administration encourage the young students to remember the lessons they've learned and maintain their drug free pledges throughout their lives.