Gulfport High celebrates first Field Day

It’s been a sunny and sweltering day here on the Gulf Coast and some high schoolers are taking full advantage. Today was Field Day at Gulfport High and it’s the school’s first one.

The rattle of locusts and the searing heat herald the end of another school year in our corner of the world — and these Gulfport teenagers have plenty to be excited about today.

Coming off of exams and a mock ACT, they’re ready to cut loose in the school’s lush courtyard. The first field day at Gulfport High School went off without a hitch, even as a tight schedule worked against the organizers.

English teacher Kristine Wetzel spearheaded the effort, and she and her committee only started putting the event together last month. “It was a thought in the middle of the night that these kids have been working so hard, and all they’ve seen is work, work, work, that they needed to have a good balance between work and fun. So I went to Ms. Husley, and I proposed the idea, and she said yeah let’s do it.”

Blind dodgeball, a dunking booth, an obstacle course … and pies to the face were some of the main draws here.

Erica Foxworth, a tenth grader, and Heather Spengler, an English teacher, call it a well-deserved treat. “After the mock ACT you have the real ACT, then after that you have 3-week, 6-week and 9-week tests, and it’s just a lot.”

“Today is going to be a phenomenal day, where everybody gets to interact with everybody — except the seniors, who are off living their lives.”

It wasn’t just a reward for their success on making it through exams, Wetzel says. It’s a reward for surviving another year in the post-COVID world.

Being the planner for all this, she was asked how she feels now that the big day is here. “I want to cry. I want to cry because I know how excited the kids are and that’s what my heart wanted was for the kids.”

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