Paloween’s Comeback After COVID

Senior+Elsa+Christensen+and+junior+Riley+Welock+explain+the+Golden+Girls+Club%E2%80%99s+activity+to+the+students.

Senior Elsa Christensen and junior Riley Welock explain the Golden Girls Club’s activity to the students.

by Aziz Syed, Reporter

The Peer Assistance and Leadership (PALS) Club held the annual Paloween event at school Oct. 26. Students from elementary schools around the district were invited to campus to play games and interact with students from different clubs. PALS organizes this event every year, however, due to the pandemic, last year’s event was cancelled, which made this year’s event particularly challenging for some of the organizations involved. 

PALS sponsor Regina Carrell conducted this program every year since she first became the PALS sponsor, making this her seventh year involved with the event. Since Paloween was canceled last year, she knew there would be a large turn out this year, and as such, made accommodations to ensure parents and students would feel safe being at the large, in-person event. One of the ways she did this was by making sure the different stations set up were spread out within the cafeteria, seeing that rooms didn’t get overly crowded. Carrell looked forward to seeing the students’ enjoyment and excitement. 

“I think the students who come [will] have a great night,” Carrel said. “It gives them a fun place to be, and it gives parents a place for their kids to safely trick-or-treat.”

Many clubs set up booths not only to entertain the students, but also to teach them about their purpose and goals. The Robotics Club created a game in which a fully autonomous robot, which they began working on about a month before the event, drove around an arena and students had to try to land objects on it as it moved. The point of the game was to inform participants of what robots are capable of and get them interested in joining the Robotics Club when they begin middle school or high school. The programming team built an autonomous loop so that the robot could move in circles without the need of a person controlling it. This thorough preparation ensured that there wouldn’t be any problems with the game on the day of the event. 

“I thought tonight went really well and a lot of kids got to come [here] and see what high schoolers do, which makes them really excited about the activities that they can start getting into,” captain of the robotics team junior Jay Bhalala said. “It was really fun to see the kids play with the robot and a lot of them came back multiple times. That showed that the interest in robotics is definitely there and the word just needs to get out there.”

Due to the size of the event, changes were made late in the planning, alternating the locations of certain stations and games. The French Club was made aware of the location of their station the weekend before the event, creating challenges when preparing their activity. They had to reorganize where the different activities would take place within the classroom as opposed to the cafeteria. French Club member junior Nira Ranganathan believes that even though there were minor problems with the planning, the event was able to run smoothly and they were well prepared for the students. 

“I think the kids liked it a lot, they were able to do so many things that they normally wouldn’t be able to do,” Ranganathan said. ”I think that it was a great idea for all the clubs to come together and get to work together for a common cause for the school.”