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The Paw Print

News for Wildcats, by Wildcats.

The Paw Print

News for Wildcats, by Wildcats.

The Paw Print

West Fest set for May 1

graphic created by Ali Akyuz
West Fest is set for May 1! Along with a slew of other activities, Mr. Hoder and Mr. Akyuz will be hosting an Open Mic and Karaoke session during this year’s West Fest. Contact either teacher for more information!

Since the doors of Normal West High school opened in 1995, “West Fest” has been an ongoing tradition. For 29 years, the celebration has been a wonderful, jovial event filled with games, raffles, and contests for the students and teachers to enjoy at the end of the school year.

To understand more about this event, it’s important to start from the very first year Normal West opened in 1995.

Principal Jerry Crabtree liked the idea of the old school carnival that schools used to have that most had gotten rid of in the 70’s.

Crabtree had a vision to bring it back, so he turned to his staff for help.

Despite there being some limitations for the school to have a full-fledged carnival, the students still enjoyed a few hours of activities and games during that first year, and it quickly became a Normal West staple and tradition from there.

Mr. Anthony Berardi, a current history teacher at Normal West, has been in charge of running West Fest for several years now.

He’s enjoyed seeing the positive impact that West Fest has on the kids and staff.

“You get to see students in a different way than just walking the halls. They get to see staff members in a different way when they’re leading and engaged in activities,” Mr. Berardi states.

Student’s look forward to West Fest to be able to take a break from the school work, and celebrate the end of a school year.

Senior Cam Thomas has always looked forward to West Fest: “It’s a fun way to end off the year with my friends and it’s always nice and sunny out.”

Today, West Fest is filled with so many fun activities including henna and caricature art, raffles, games, a food truck, and a fan favorite, the dunk tank!

This year, West Fest will be on May 1, 2024. There will be basketball in the south gym, booths of activities in the atrium, a dunk tank outside, and a food truck!

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