Senator Square: Wings given to children, families

Denise DiMarzo and Larry Stock organize the Angel Tree event to help children and families in need at Christmas.

Denise DiMarzo and Larry Stock organize the Angel Tree event to help children and families in need at Christmas.

It’s that time of year again to organize the family adoption for the Angel Tree, organized by Denise DiMarzo at Eagle Valley Middle School. DiMarzo has been working with school counselors and school social workers to identify children and families in need and help as many as possible. Her list this year includes 100 families with more than 350 children to be adopted this Christmas, and many of those children are from Empire Elementary, Mark Twain Elementary, and the Eagle Valley neighborhoods. The Angel Tree needs help in many ways, including monetary donations, food drives for the holiday meals, all nonperishable food items for the meals, individuals or organizations to adopt a child for Christmas, and volunteers to help organize and sort when delivery time gets close. In years past, CHS clubs, organizations, teams, and individual staff alone have ‘adopted’ 8-15 of these families and purchased gifts and gift cards for children and families, and DiMarzo, again this year, needs to know how many families both CHS and the community of Carson City are willing to help. DiMarzo said of the inspiration for her project, “While working as Office Manager at Empire Elementary School from 2008-15, it became apparent to me that many of our Carson City families struggle financially during the winter season, and children were going without the basics at Christmas.” DiMarzo also said, “I found this difficult to watch, so I decided to do something about it.” She explained about her project: “From the beginning it was clear there are many giving, generous people in this community who are more than happy to get involved; we have been helping many families in the Empire Elementary neighborhood for years now, so this year we decided to branch out to include needy families from other Carson City schools.” DiMarzo is collaborating with Larry Stock at Polymer Plastics Corporation, who has offered his warehouse as a hub for the program and his expertise in organization. Everything is delivered to families the weekend before Christmas. Contact Denise DiMarzo, Administrative Secretary at Eagle Valley Middle School, 283-2600, to participate in the joy this worthy cause will bring this Christmas.


This year’s CHS Holiday Craft Fair is going on right now through Sunday. There are 140 booths this year with Santa, the Senior Project book sale, and a raffle. Today’s admission price is $1.50 or $1 with a canned food donation. Students K-12 are free as are any younger children. The Photo III and Photo Advanced Studies students will be running the Santa Photo Booth today, and all funds raised will go to CHS Photography, which will potentially be donating to those devastated by the Camp Fire. The booth will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on today.


Looking for CHS Spirit Wear? A CHS Christmas catalog has been set up for personal needs and those extra gifts for Christmas, with all funds raised going to the Senator Pride account at CHS. To order Spirit Wear, go to The deadline to place an order is Nov. 18 at 11:59 p.m., and orders are to be done online. Delivery is 2-4 weeks. Order pick up will be at CHS throughout December. Unfortunately, there will be no returns or refunds allowed.


The Teacher Charity Basketball Game against Douglas was Nov. 14 at Douglas High. This annual event is a competition between CHS and Douglas to see who gets the most canned food, and as a bonus, to determine whose teaching staff excels at basketball. Douglas took the win, beating CHS by 11 points. According to CHS teacher and basketball player Ty McMillen, “Everyone who attended had a fantastic time.”


CHS participated in the first round of Poetry Out Loud, with Marion Haffey taking 1st place and advancing to the state competition this spring. CHS Debate had another strong showing at the McQueen tournament last weekend as well. For the first time ever, more than 30 students participated for CHS. Vanessa Lezama Rojas placed 8th in novice informative speaking with her piece of the human skull. Evan Cherpeski placed 7th in senior info with his piece titled “Why I Hate Australia.” Jocelyn Estrada placed 7th with her story “So You Want to Be a Cheerleader,” and Madisyn Dunlap and Heidi Barney advanced to final round of duo interpretation, placing 6th with their piece “Color Separation.” In novice dramatic interpretation, Sy’Johniqa Moore placed 4th with her cutting of “The Hate You Give,” and Makayla Hernandez took 3rd performing “The Things They Carried.” In senior dramatic, Valeria Torres placed 3rd with her piece titled “Sickened,” and Marion Haffey placed 2nd with her cutting of “Deenie.” Cierra Randal, Nate Wetzel, and Ivy Campbell placed 8th, 5th, and 3rd in novice extemporaneous speaking, with Sophia Peterson claiming 3rd overall in senior extemporaneous. In debate, Ivy Campbell and Emma Peterson advanced to semifinals undefeated in public forum with the topic of price controls on the pharmaceutical industry, taking 3rd place overall, with Emma taking 3rd in speaker points and Ivy taking 1st. Ryan Soulier took 9th place in novice Lincoln Douglas speaker points, and Becca Trejo took 9th place in senior Lincoln Douglas speaker points. Policy teammates Jessica Knutson and Niko Ventura took 8th and 7th place in speaker points as well. Nate Wetzel took 2nd place in novice Lincoln Douglas speaker points and was awarded 1st place overall in the events winning all of his rounds. The team will also be having their annual winter Exhibition Dec. 14 at the Brewery Arts Center. Tickets for this event are $5 and can be purchased at the door. The show will begin at 6 p.m. and end around 8 p.m. Carson High competes next at Elko High School.


The CHS National Honor Society members are providing 25 Thanksgiving meals for families at Mark Twain Elementary School. Members are gathering items such as canned goods, stuffing, gravy, potatoes, rice, bread rolls, and pies. Any community member may still participate in this food drive. Drop off any non-perishable items at the office in care of NHS by Nov. 19. Bread rolls and pies may be dropped off Nov. 20. Email CHS teacher Brian Branch for more information:


Seniors attended a field trip to WNC for a campus tour and Nevada Promise Scholarship Workday Nov. 8. According to CHS Counselor Mandy Chambers, “I am so excited we have 90 kids who have applied for this scholarship; we probably have more, but those are just the kids who got their field trip permission slips in on time.” Nearly 300 high school seniors from around the region toured Western Nevada College in Carson City. Nevada Promise is a scholarship and mentoring program for Nevada high school seniors in order to make college more accessible to students in the state. The scholarship covers tuition and class fees and will save families more than $3,000 per year. Not only did these students tour the campus, they also met with representatives from nearly 20 service groups and nonprofits, exposing them to programs and how to get involved. Although the application deadline for the Nevada Promise Scholarship has passed, seniors can still join the WNC Bridge to Success group at CHS. Bridge to Success helps seniors take the necessary steps to become WNC students in the fall. Next semester, they will take placements tests if necessary, receive academic advising, and register for their fall classes, all during their regular school days.


A West Point Cadet will visit CHS Nov. 19 at 1:15 p.m. in the Tech Center to speak with those interested in attending such a prestigious college. Interested in military academies? This is a great opportunity to learn about the process and ask questions.


HOSA Future Health Professionals will host a Memorial Balloon Release event at the CHS Baseball field Nov. 26. This event is open to anyone who has lost a loved one and would love to celebrate the remembering of a life. Heart message cards will be pre-sold at CHS before and after school and at lunch for $2 on November 16, 19, and 20 at the CHS Student Finance office or the main office. The event will start at 6:30 p.m.; however, gates will open at 5:30 p.m. to purchase a balloon and heart message card for $4. Those with pre-purchased heart message cards are asked to arrive by 6 p.m. to receive their balloons. Contact Kelly Gustafson at or Frank Sakelarios at for more information.


The Carson City School District Orchestras will have a holiday concert fundraiser Dec. 4 at 7 p.m. with free admission at the Carson City Community Center. There will also be a Silent Auction, a Bake Sale, Popcorn Sales, and a free TapSnap booth with Santa on-site.


Students who enjoy art, music, and dance, or have an interest in writing, producing films and taking photos, are being asked to participate in unleashing their inner artist with the PTA Reflections contest. This year’s theme, “Heroes Around Me,” calls for unique artistic interpretations. Students may pick up submission guidelines and an entry form from the CHS Library and return it by Dec. 5. For inspiration, visit the Reflections virtual art gallery to learn more about prizes and scholarships at


KiLynne Janell Munoz is the CHS Student of Week. KiLynne’s classes are Honors World History, Honors Chemistry I, Honors English II, Honors Algebra II, NJROTC II, Drawing and Painting I, and American Sign Language II. She’s a part of the Keystone club which focuses on fundraisers to help struggling individuals and organizations in Carson City. KiLynne loves people and said, “I like people to know that it’s all right to think like a child, because this is where our creativity is born.” Congratulations to KiLynne. CHS is a better place because of her.


Pioneer High School’s Senior in the Spotlight for November is Daniel Camarena Ramos. Daniel is responsible, outgoing, and eager to help others. He spends time in the school office as a student aide, and his friendly disposition helps him to be responsive to new students. Daniel is motivated, and that motivation is reflected in his good grades. He’s hoping to earn all As this semester. Daniel really enjoys his American Government class, hanging out with friends, and reading. After graduating from high school, he’s looking forward to attending WNC through the Nevada Promise scholarship. It’s definitely a promising future for Daniel.

Phil Brady is an English teacher at CHS.


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment