By Claire Krackow
Senior prom is definitely a night to remember and cherish for the rest of your life. The seniors at Red Lion Senior High School did just that and then some. On the night of prom at 8 p.m., prom court was announced to walk with an escort of their choice. Lauren Bankard won prom queen.
Senior Cody Woods, a classmate with Down Syndrome, was then crowned prom king.
Cody was very excited when he was crowned that night. The song that Cody chose to walk to with his escort (Brittany Mancha) was “Greased Lightning.
“I chose that song because it’s from my favorite movie,” Woods said. His favorite character is Danny Zucco from the movie “Grease,” which is another reason why he chose the song.
Fox 43 showed up at prom to interview Cody and other classmates about his being crowned king. Woods said that he was very “excited” and “nervous” about being interviewed but all around it was a great experience for him.
“I danced and took a lot of pictures,” Woods said.
“We were first asked if it was okay that Cody would be on court by the lady that runs the prom (Mrs. Jennifer Wireman) and everything,” Cody’s teacher, Mrs. Denise Wagner said. “And we said that we felt that he would handle it very well.”
“And then when he was on prom court, we talked to him about the possibilities of winning but also the possibilities that he might not, but that we loved him regardless and he was our king, regardless,” Wagner said with a smile.
Senior Brittany Mancha, who works with Cody on the morning announcements show, was chosen to escort him down the prom court that night.
“He’s such a sweetheart. We talk every morning when he comes to the TV studio and he always has a smile on his face,” Mancha said.
“It was so funny, Mrs. Kuhn actually called me out of calculus and said, ‘So, Cody was planning on asking you, but he wanted to make sure it wouldn’t interfere with your date.’ I said it was perfectly fine and the next morning, Cody walked up to me in the TV studio with Mrs. Kuhn. He was so giddy, but nervous, and asked me if I would escort him. Of course, I said yes,” Mancha said. “He immediately held his arms out for a hug.”
“Everyone on court was so kind to him and he couldn’t stop grinning the entire time. When the song “Greased Lightning” started playing, he walked down the ballroom and he high-fived every single person the entire walk down,” Mancha said. “I felt absolutely honored to escort such a sweet guy.”
“We chose the right kind of person to walk with him that evening, so that he had the right type of person to handle his abilities and to just be sure that he was doing okay,” Mrs. Wagner said.
Woods said that even when he was announced prom king, he already felt like a king beforehand.
“It doesn’t matter what day it is, if it’s sunny, if it’s bright or even if it’s not, he high fives everybody in the halls,” Wagner said. “He makes sure that he goes out of his way to say hello to people, good morning, he greets teachers, and he doesn’t let anybody stop him. So if he gets discouraged with somebody, he will still say hello to them again the next day.” Wagner said.
“It does not matter who they are, he wants to be friends with everybody.”
Carly Guise was the local winner for the Red Lion-Dallastown Rotary Club. Her essay was submitted in the larger contest of all the Rotary Clubs in Rotary District 7390 (Central PA). Carly won the larger contest as well.
She read her winning essay to the district convention May 2 and was awarded a check for $500. Her mother, Chera Stough, her father, Scott Guise, and her brother Shane were present for this.
On Thursday, May 7, 2015 the Red Lion-Dallastown honored the finalists and winner of the Rotary 4-Way Essay Contest. A summary of each of the finalists’ essays was shared and Carly Guise read her essay to the Rotary Club members at the Great American Saloon Banquet Room. The students and their essays were warmly received.
Submitted by Dr. Frank Herron.
By Ian Adler
Mr. Jay Vasellas, a former student and teacher at Red Lion, is planning to run for school board in this year’s upcoming election.
Vasellas taught various American history classes at the high school for 38 years, and with the exception of college and pre-kindergarten days, spent all of his life in the district as well. In addition to teaching at Red Lion, Vasellas also teaches American history classes at York College, and has been doing so for 13 years.
“I’ve just got a passion for this school district,” Vasellas said. “It’s defined me, it’s defined my family and any of the accomplishments and opportunities my family has had have been generated by this school district.”
However, Jay isn’t the first in the Vasellas family with interest in a school board membership. Vasellas’ mother, Norma Vasellas, served on the school board for 16 years.
“I saw what she could bring in background knowledge and how teachers feel about certain things,” Vasellas said. “It’s a different thing.”
Norma was a teacher at Dallastown, in addition to her Red Lion school board membership.
Currently, there are no teachers or former teachers on the school board, as no paid employee of the district may serve on the board, as outlined in the school board member applicaton. This obviously can raise a few issues between the two groups of people, from communication to wants and needs.
“Sometimes, I feel like the communication between school board and teachers can be enhanced, almost as a translator,” Vasellas said. “Teachers and board members sometimes just do not speak the same language.”
In addition to the standard expectations and activities that all school board members carry out, Vasellas has some ideas of his own to contribute.
“My priority is going to be how do we best implement mandates on the local level when they come from above,” Vasellas said. “How do we do the best job we can to teach kids in the classroom?”
Currently, Vasellas is an Interim board member. He was named to temporarily fill a position that someone had resigned from.
School board primary elections were held on May 19. Vasellas placed first among both republican and democrat voters. Mike Rowe will be his opponent for the seat in November elections.
In addition to Vasellas, four other candidates are running. Clair Weigle, James Clark who is currently on the board, Kevin Downs and Michael Rowe.