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River Day 2019

Kingfishers ended their first week of school on a really high note: River Day!  Thanks to Dr. and Mrs. Crosby, we were once again able to make our annual jaunt out to the Black River for tons of fun activities all afternoon and into the evening.

The first adventure was getting there in teachers’ cars with all our gear and all the donated food.  The second adventure was finding a life vest that fit and actually getting it buckled up.

Then came the good part: hours of activities both on an off the water.  River Day is when you can relax and enjoy what you want to do—kayaking, swimming, paddle-boarding, volleyball, water balloons, knee-boarding, tubing, chatting with friends, and riding in a motor boat.  The head of school lurked around in his kayak and splashed unsuspecting students.  Everyone got wet!

Water and land sports were going full tilt as the sky gradually began to darken and cloud over.  Around 4:00, we heard the first rumble of thunder.  “Everybody out the water,” shouted all the teachers.  Kayaks were beached and people made their way up onto the deck and frantically searched for their towels.  We took a moment to eat some snacks, then there was a giant clap of thunder right overhead.  “Everyone inside!” shouted Mrs. Crosby.  She sprang into action, furnishing a bucket of old towels for people to sit on as they crowded her living room.

Mrs. Patrick, Dr. Simmons, and Qulex courageously braved the ensuing downpour to grill hot dogs and hamburgers for dinner.  Mrs. Simmons ran back and forth, setting up the fixings and plates.  The rain didn’t stop but it was time to eat.  Dr. Gates called each class in turn and the rain still didn’t stop.

Kingfishers were tired and happy after their meal—also ready to get a hot shower and dry off.  They thanked Mrs. Crosby and went off to the first weekend of the school year, still wrapped in their towels.

Glowing with the flow

Ready, set, glow! This year’s Glo-n-Go 5K Fun Run was a smashing success. About fifty participants gathered in front of the Winyah Auditorium on the evening of August 3, decked out in neon shirts, glow-in-the-dark bracelets and necklaces, and even body paint. People from Georgetown and beyond–along with their dogs–took to the streets in a flood of neon.

First man to finish was Blake Joseph and first woman was Nancy Altman. Other awards went to the Youngest Finisher (Lawson Angner), the Wisest Finisher (Barbie Jones), the Most Glowing Finisher (Nathan Gates), and the Fastest Dog (Felix) who pulled his owner Steve Attias over the finish line in second place overall.

While some competitors ran as fast as they could, others chose to walk and enjoy the evening. “It’s not about winning,” said TGS alumna Isabella. “It’s about getting to spend time with your friends and just hand out.” Whether they walked, ran, strolled, or hitched a ride on one of the many golf carts, everyone had a great time. We are already looking forward to next year’s event.

We want to thank our generous sponsors and donors, especially the City of Georgetown: Attias Law LLC, Edward Jones, First Citizens, Inlet Pulmonary, Design House, Daniel Engineering, TJU Services, Castaways, Dr. Ana Ferrer, Po Boys Discount, Old Fish House, Fast and Fresh, Groucho’s, Old Georgetown Creamery, Graham’s Landing, River Room, Dr. Michael McGinnis, HowCox Rock and Dirt, Black Dog Running, Sweeties, PetCo, Buzz’s Roost, YMCA, Pawleys Island Veterinary, Lowes Foods. Thanks for all the help, Kingfishers!

By Ryleigh

Saturday Spirit

Dr. Gates, along with several faculty members, was part of the 20th anniversary celebration of the Spirit-Filled Ambassadors for Christ ministry in Andrews. TGS was invited to set up a booth as an opportunity to tell the attendees about our school. It was a beautiful sunny day on Saturday, July 27, in the friendly town of Andrews. We met some very nice folks and ate some delicious food. Mr. Jim Dumm, long-time director of Tara Hall, was also on hand with members of his board to publicize our new partner school, The Tara Academy. Thank you to Dr. Deshawn Rouse and Mrs. Debra Rouse for including us in this day of fun and celebration!

The Tara Academy of Arts and Sciences

The Georgetown School will be partnering with Tara Hall to start a new school for 3rd and 4th graders out in the county. Located on Tara Hall’s beautiful 11-acre campus on Black Mingo Creek, the new school will serve families from Andrews, Hemingway, and Johnsonville, as well as Georgetown. This outreach is a new and expanding mission for Tara Hall, which has a 50-year history of helping educate young people from Georgetown and nearby counties. Third- and fourth-graders who are educated at The Tara Academy will be ready for fifth grade at TGS and Tara Hall is giving TGS access to its impressive facilities: a river dock, playing fields, a full gymnasium, and forest trails. We are very excited about this new opportunity!

Awards Day 2019

The last day of school finally arrived and it was time to look back over a year of achievement and growth. Dr. Gates welcomed the crowd of students, families, and friends, then talked about several new scientific studies on why IQ scores have been declining since 2006. One theory is that having smart phones has decreased our attention spans, made it harder for us to learn material, and distracted us from being fully present in class, for example. Dr. Gates pointed out that students at our school have never lived in an era without smart phones and challenged us to learn to curb any bad effects they might be having on classroom learning.

Then our wonderful students were recognized for their amazing achievements in 2018-2019 in science, SCISA events, sports, the arts and more. At the end, teachers took turns presenting the six TGS awards to Grayson (Senior Speech), Ryleigh (Academics), Margaret (Service), Naomi (Athletic/Extra-curricular), Manny (Art), and Qulex (Kingfisher).

Graduation 2019

Filled with anticipation and excitement, a large crowd of family and friends, students and faculty gathered in the Winyah Auditorium on May 24 for the 6th Commencement Exercises of The Georgetown School of Arts & Sciences.

Father Richard C. Wilson of Our Lady of Ransom Catholic Church gave the invocation, followed by a warm welcome to the crowd and Class of 2019 by Joyce Gates, president of the Board of Directors of the school.

Salutatorian Grayson, who has attended TGS since the sixth grade, thanked his teachers and friends for a great experience together in the classroom, on the field, and even on stage.  “If you asked my ninth-grade self if I would play the Scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz in three years, I would have laughed,” Grayson said. “But now I’m grateful that I decided to step out of my comfort zone.  Everyone here has a chance to do that.”  He ended his address with a tribute to his mother, Barbara Sossamon, saying, “She is my number one fan—she is the best.”

Brynn, valedictorian, evoked her community service, her internship with St. Frances, and her time leading a group on the school trip as highlights of her time at TGS. “One thing I love about the learning community is the relationship between teacher and student,” she said.  “When you are a student at TGS, you are in a place where you can have personal conversations and connections with your teachers, but they still are strict enough to make you to do your work and behave.”  Brynn concluded by thanking her grandparents Paul and Patricia Parsley for always pushing her to do her best.

Sarah Exum of the TGS Class of 2015 and a 2019 graduate of the University of Indiana gave the graduation address, sharing wisdom that she received from her grandmother about the “three bones” that are necessary for success: a “wish bone” for dreaming big dreams, a “back bone” for standing up for what is right, and a “funny bone” for keeping life in perspective and not taking yourself too seriously.

Finally Dr. Gary Gates called the roll of graduates, who came forward to receive their diplomas and stand beside him.  The crowd saw a mixture of emotion on their faces and tears in their eyes.  Dr. Gates thanked each graduate for his or her special contribution to the culture of the school and congratulated them on their fine achievement.

The crowd rushed down to congratulate the newly graduated students and celebrate with a reception in the hall.  The Class of 2019 is composed of Brynn (University of S. C.), Grayson (Coastal Carolina University), Cathryn (Flagler University), and (Xavier University).

Essay Winners

Congratulations to Morgan and J’Marion for placing 1st and 2nd place for The Georgetown School in the 2019 Georgetown Soil and Water Conservation District Essay Contest.  The essay contest is open to all sixth-graders in Georgetown County and features cash prizes of $50 for each first-place winner and $25 to each second-place winner in all eligible schools.

All TGS sixth-graders participated in the contest, writing a 400-500-word essay on the many ways we depend on soil for our existence and why it is so important not to “treat it like dirt.”  The sixth-graders studied the role soil plays in giving us healthy food and clean water in Science class with Dr. Neubauer, then worked on their essays in Language Arts with Mrs. Crosby.  We are very proud of Morgan and J’Marion for their achievement!

Juried Art Show

The Horry-Georgetown Counties Twentieth Annual Juried Art Exhibition is currently on display at the Myrtle Beach Art Museum until May 26. Works in a dazzling array of media by local high school students have been chosen to hang on the second floor. The show is sponsored by Sandy Hubbard and Thomas Logan.

Manny’s painting “Sunflowers” was selected for inclusion in the show. At the opening ceremony on April 28, she was congratulated by the show’s sponsors Hubbard and Logan plus Mrs. Patrick and Dr. Gates. Manny’s whole family was there to support her as well and it was a lovely occasion.

Follow the Yellow Brick Road

“We’re off to see the wizard, the wonderful Wizard of Oz!”  On Thursday, April 18, the TGS drama class presented their second annual school musical at the Winyah Auditorium.  This year, they sang their way through two performances of the Wizard of Oz, earning themselves thunderous applause and a standing ovation from a very appreciative audience of friends, families, and students from other schools.

The show starred Cathryn as Dorothy, Grayson as the Scarecrow, Kate as the Tin Man, Ethan as the Cowardly Lion, Kendall as the good witch Glinda, and Rachel as the Wicked Witch.  Almost the entire school from fifth to twelfth grade was involved in some way, including a huge cast of actors, a handful of backstage hands and stage managers, and a group of tech students to control the lights and sound.

In the morning, they presented their play to a group of students from Kensington Elementary and Georgetown High School, who were amazed by the experience.  That evening, a huge crowd of parents and other visitors saw the second performance. “It was amazing,”  Margaret complimented the cast after the show.  “Everything came together so well.”  With catchy tunes, familiar characters, and hand-painted sets, every part of the night was a success.  The audience was in awe at the performance, marveling at speedy costume changes and powerful vocals.  “I absolutely loved it,”  Ms Yorky shared.  “I had no idea so many of them could sing.  It was so much better than last year.”

After the evening performance, Dorothy (Cathryn) thanked Ms. Josie, Mrs. Lina, Ms. Mahi, and Mr. William for their role in making the musical a success. Then Ms. Josie took the mic to tell her cast and crew that she loved them and was very proud of the excellent performances.

By Ryleigh

The Unkindest Cut

It was time for Caesar to go. 

Sixth and seventh grade Language Arts students assembled on the front lawn to perform the death scene from Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar.  The senators dressed in togas and carried various fake swords and knives.  As each senator stabbed Caesar (J’Marion), he or she tossed a small cup of real fake blood onto his toga.  But somehow a little blood got onto other people’s togas.

Other main actors in the outdoor performance included Brutus (Morgan), Marc Anthony (Camper), and Cassius (Trey). Casca (Annika) got to stab Caesar first.

The next day, Mrs. Crosby was despairing of her bed sheets.  “I got most of the blood out,” she said.  “But one toga is still soaking.”