What’s recently happened?
Over the past weekend, the Griffith Theatre Company (GTC) showed “The Wizard of Oz” as the middle school play.
According to the troupe’s directors, this show was well above the middle school acting level, and the cast performed very well for the challenge of the play. The play had nearly the entire theater filled each day and was the best middle school show to date based on profits.
Even among the high school plays, this showing was the fourth most profitable show ever shown in the GTC. Hair and Makeup Manager Sarah Issa believed this play went as smoothly as any she has ever been a part of.
“This play stood out above all the others because of how resilient the young actors and actresses were throughout the whole process of this challenging performance,” Issa said.
Led by Donna Gaham and Milah Castro, the Griffith Middle School Theatre Company performed one of the best ever three-day showings in school history. These young stars will soon be in high school and producing even better plays and musicals.
What’s coming up?
Griffith High School (GHS) is starting to kick spring sports into full swing this upcoming month.
Softball will start having full practices within the next two weeks and start its season March 26 against the Merrillville High School Pirates. Be on the lookout for Pitcher Mariah Green and Outfielder Kayla Doctor as they both enter their senior season with eyes set on a deep postseason run and a good conference standing.
Baseball will also begin full practices within the next two weeks and open up away against the Crown Point High School Bulldogs. Seniors Hunter Smith and Collin Young are looking to push the team towards improvement from last season as well as help mentor the younger players. Young is very excited for his last season and is looking forward to every second he gets to spend with his guys.
“My friends and I have been on the team for all four years, so it will be fun to see what we all can do together,” he said.
Both Boys and Girls Track and Field starts official practice next week and will begin their seasons at Portage High School for the NWI Championships on March 4. The distance medley relay (DMR) has great potential this season and could be up for an indoor state bid with improvements shown by Sophomores Gabe Goral and Tristan Head. Goral says he has seen much better results since the fall and sees a big jump in the near future.
“My fitness is in the best place it’s been in my entire life, and I think we all can get the DMR to State with enough hard work,” Goral said.
March is a big month for these programs and the athletes who will show off all the work they have done in the off-season.
Dan Young is GHS’s school resource officer and is also the Griffith Public Schools (GPS) Director of Safety and Security. Young went to high school at Van Wert High School in Ohio and pursued undergraduate studies at both Anderson University and Calumet College of Saint Joseph. He completed a master's degree at Northwestern University. He spent four years with the Northwestern University Police Department and 21 years with the Hammond Police, totaling 25 years of being a police officer.
Within his job as a police officer, there are many different positions he could fill, and Young plans to finish his career working alongside the youth as both a police officer and a coach.
Away from his occupation, Young enjoys a multitude of hobbies.
“In my free time, I enjoy physical fitness, coaching baseball and football, and spending time with my family and friends,” he said.
Young is grateful for his position in life as well as his aspirations.
“With life in general, I am very blessed to be in a position to impact people’s lives. As a police officer, I want to strengthen relationships by building bridges to better connect students with police officers. As well as this, I aspire to be a voice and an inspiration for those with disabilities, as I have some myself,” Young said.
Young’s time has been relatively short at GHS, but he has been a great positive influence the school is grateful for.
Mariah Green is a senior at GHS and a part of softball and the Senior Class Council. Green transferred to GHS from Morton High School in Hammond during her junior year and has made herself a new home.
Green’s passions include family and success. Green accredits her position in her life to her family and connects that with her goals of success.
“My family has made me who I am, and without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today,” she said. “Being successful in life is what I strive for no matter what I do.”
What she plans on doing and being successful in is teaching. Green is currently part of the Student Cadet Teaching Program at GHS and helps out at Beiriger Elementary School as “Ms. Green.”
“I hope to be a kindergarten teacher and be a great role model to kids,” Green said. “I want to share my love of softball with them too.”
Green’s motivation lies with her family and her future when on the softball field. She feels obligated to reciprocate the effort her family put into her successes. She also owes it to her future self to work hard.
“My family has put the same amount of effort and time that I have into this game while making sure I was still on track being the best I can be,” she said.
Green is a rare case of a student, athlete, and employee. While dealing with the balancing of these three commitments, Green commits to putting schoolwork first and work as a close second. She makes sure to get in training by going to the gym in the morning if she can’t make it after school.
On the topic of commitments, Green has also committed to attend college at South Suburban College (SSC) to not only continue her softball career but also continue on the path to becoming a teacher. Since SSC is a two year college, she also has plans ahead of this schedule.
“After my two years at SSC, I plan to transfer to a four year to play two more years of softball while also continuing majoring in elementary education,” Green said.
Green loves the program at SSC and was also offered a full ride scholarship to play softball and continue her education. She has had her eyes set on this for a while and is excited to live out that goal. GHS will miss her infectious personality and her great vibes.