Normal West prepares for annual festival

Ceil Steinbacher-Kemp, News Editor

West Fest, an annual carnival at Normal West High School, will take place this year on May 6th, during the last few hours of the school day.

West Fest has been been a part of Normal West since 1995, when West first opened. The festival includes a wide variety of activities open to all students and staff.

Mr. Tony Berardi, who as been a teacher at West all 21 years since the school’s establishment, is in his second year of being the head sponsor for West Fest.

“It was a lot easier this year because we already had a lot of things in place, things from last year that seemed to work out,” comments Berardi

“It can be stressful for me sometimes because I am the one that has to make sure everything is coordinated and in place and people are doing what they said they’re going to do, making the phone calls to the outside, just making sure everything runs smoothly,” he continued.

Mr. Berardi claimed that this year West Fest will hopefully offer up a place where students can go and get free hot dogs while attending the festival.

The Normal West Speech Team will have a concession stand selling popcorn and other various items to fundraise to send several of their members to Nationals this summer.

The festival will also bring back many crowd favorites this year such as the carnival truck with funnel cakes and lemon shake-ups, a dunk tank, a climbing wall brought to West by the military, the UFL championship, and battle of the bands.

“It’s this time of year that everything starts wrapping up and all the fun things start to happen, and now that it’s senior year, there’s only more of these fun and exciting things,” comments Normal West senior, Emily Ramsey.

For seniors, one of the biggest parts of the festival is the painting of their bricks in the senior hallway.

“West Fest is one of my best memories from West, all of the food, and just the feeling of summer coming,” comments Elli Alvis, a freshman at Saint Ambrose University, and a graduate from the 2015 class of Normal West.

West Fest takes place from 12:45-2:30.


Painted bricks cover the the senior hallway from years past seniors who spent time at their final West Fest leaving their mark on the school.

Photo by: Ceil Steinbacher-Kemp