As was the case with the RBHS Show Choir Festival and the varsity wrestling match Jan. 12, the spring club fair is the latest victim of inclement weather.
The cub fair, originally scheduled to take place in the gymnasium tomorrow, will now take place Friday because of tomorrow’s late start, Betsy Jones, director of counseling, said. Administrators at RBHS, Gentry Middle School (GMS) and Jefferson Middle School (JMS) are coordinating to solidify the date.
The club fair will start 9:30 a.m. and last until 2 p.m. During their visit, eighth-graders from the two RBHS feeder schools, GMS and JMS, will split into a number of small groups, Student Activities Secretary Hannah Casey said. Students will have the opportunity to speak with a student panel, listen to an enrollment presentation, go on a department tour and explore the club fair. As of 2:50 p.m. today, Casey said at least 20 clubs signed up to participate in the event.
“I’d say right now we probably have about 50 active clubs,” Casey said, “so to have about half of them participating is a fantastic success.”
Casey and Inter Club Council (ICC) co-president Piper Page shared the link to a google form for club sign-ups with student leaders and club sponsors. When completing the sheet, clubs designated four members to represent their organization, two in the first session from 9-11:30 a.m. and two in the second session from 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. This way, Casey said, if students miss class, they will miss less content than if they were excused from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Just as student leaders sacrifice class time to make the club fair run smoothly, faculty and staff members will also be involved to keep the event on schedule.
“If a student is able to go into a club fair and find a way to be seen and be involved, then that’s a success.”
“I would say [the eighth grade visit and the club fair are] one of those that we’re all willing to make a stretch because these are our future freshmen,” Casey said.
Organizations here plan to use the club fair as a way to promote their clubs and answer questions rising freshmen may have regarding how to get involved at RBHS. Sophomore Luke Gallagher, Key Club’s sophomore class representative, said recommendations from older Key Club members initially influenced his decision to join. Through the club fair, Gallagher hopes to establish a connection with the eighth-graders by talking with them about school and how they can participate in community volunteer work through Key Club.
“I think it will be good for promotion so they can see kind of what the different clubs are for the club fair in general, and also for our club,” Gallagher said. “A lot of people are interested in helping out the community, so this is a great way to get involved in that.”
Participating clubs should plan to give quick and engaging presentations at the event to interest new members in joining. While she hardly remembers her first club fair experience in eighth grade, co-president of ICC senior Madison Hopper recalled the variety of opportunities clubs presented her with.
“What a lot of clubs do is they’ll make a sign-up sheet just to [recruit people who are interested], and then they’ll be put into the club’s messages or threads, so they’ll get involved with the meeting times and all that stuff,” Hopper said. “A lot of clubs also like to bring candy or some other kind of snack to pass out because food is a big motivator for a lot of students.”
Following the success of the first semester club fair targeted at current RBHS students, Casey said allowing incoming freshmen to see the variety of clubs students can join in high school in a low pressure environment allows people to straightforwardly become involved.
“If a student is able to go into a club fair and find a way to be seen and be involved,” Casey said, “then that’s a success.”
Considering how overwhelming as the eighth grade visit and club fair experience may be for some incoming freshmen, Hopper recommended students bring a notepad to write down information about the clubs they are interested in. She said eighth-graders should talk to club leaders about how to become involved and to learn about what each club does.
“Remember to have fun with it ‘cause you don’t have to join every club you see, and also remember to not join every club you see because that would be crazy,” Hopper said. “But it’s OK to say ‘No’ if you’re not interested in a club, and it’ll help the club leaders not have to worry about contacting you, and you don’t have to worry about being contacted. But just have fun with it.”
How have late starts affected you this semester? Let us know in the comments below.