Senator Square: Chamber Orchestra earns Gold rating |

Senator Square: Chamber Orchestra earns Gold rating

Phil Brady and Brian Fox
CHS Orchestra Festival

The CHS Chamber Orchestra, directed by Dr. Brian Fox, is back from its spring trip to the Bay Area. The Chamber Orchestra competed in the Forum Music Festival at Diablo Valley College in Pleasant Hill and earned a Gold rating from the adjudicators, the top rating. Violinist Eleanor Sturm and bassist Riley Dunn each earned Outstanding Individual Musician awards as well. Outside of the competition, the Chamber Orchestra attended the San Francisco Symphony, a world-class ensemble, at Davies Hall. Students were also able to go to the Exploratorium at Pier 15 and experience fascinating exhibits, many of them dealing with sound and human hearing, useful for musicians, indeed. This is, again, one more example of how culture and the arts in Carson City are vibrant.


CHS Speech and Debate recently competed at the district tournament at Reno High School with the majority of the team advancing to the elimination portion of the tournament. The team successfully qualified four students to compete at nationals. Alexis McKenzie qualified to be a part of the Northern Nevada World Schools debate team in her first national appearance. Rebecca Trejo qualified with her oral interpretation piece combining literature, poetry, and prose around a theme of her choice. This is also her first trip to nationals. Captain Evan Cherpeski and Sadie Share earned a spot to compete in public forum debate without losing a single qualifying round. This is Evan’s first trip to nationals as well. Sadie is now the first student in CHS history to compete at nationals three out of her four years as a member of the team. The rest of the team had an excellent showing at the tournament as well. Captain Sophia Peterson earned first alternate to nationals in foreign extemporaneous speaking. Emerson Spence is also first alternate in congressional debate. Mary Milburn and Emerson Spence advanced to quarterfinals of public forum debate. Kevin Avila and Alexis McKenzie are first alternate in duo interpretation with teammates Valeria Torres and Kat Vallejos taking the third alternate spot. Kevin is first alternate for World Schools and Valeria is also now second alternate.


This past week, more than 550 freshman students engaged in a presentation about the opioid crisis in Nevada and the country. Attorney General Adam Laxalt recently hired former FBI agent and registered nurse Terry Kerns to coordinate the state’s efforts to battle this epidemic. Students in health classes learned about the laws and the alarming statistics surrounding the opioid crisis. Kerns encouraged all students to talk to their parents and bring all unused drugs to the National Prescription Drug Take Back day April 28 to find a safe convenient, and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs while also educating the general public about the potential for abuse of medications. Locating a nearby collections site is as easy as searching by zip code or state.


A Star Wars dance is coming May 4 from 7 to 9 p.m. at CHS, and it’s a casual dance with students able to wear jeans and T-shirts. Tickets are $5 for early bird pricing and $10 at the door. Call Star Wars Club Advisor and CHS teacher Jim Bean for information at 775-283-1714.


On behalf of the CHS Boys Basketball program, the “Drive 4 UR School” event is coming back to Carson High. Three hundred drivers are needed to meet the goal and support the CHS boys basketball program May 5 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Drivers, one adult driver per household, must be at least 18 years old with a valid driver’s license. This fundraiser will help replace equipment, rims, backboards, balls, as well as improve the quality of the CHS gyms for the basketball programs and P.E. department. Drivers earn $20 each for CHS.


This year, CHS will participate in the Carson-Douglas Relay for Life fundraiser May 19 from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. at Mills Park in Carson City. The CHS team, called the Cancer Walkers, is asking CHS students and staff and any of their friends and relatives to join the team by going to To become a part of the CHS team and make a donation, click on “Join this relay.” New participants will need to create an account, the first step in registering for the event. It’s also possible to join the CHS Cancer Walkers team by giving donations to CHS teachers Frank Sakelarios, Kelly Gustafson, or Christina Mannschreck anytime before the event or at the event. There will be several live bands for music and entertainment, and even if someone cannot attend the event, he or she may still join the team and make a donation. Would you like to stop by, say hello, and walk a little? Well, Frank Sakelarios and Kelly Gustafson, along with CHS HOSA, will have a canopy set up. Call or email CHS math teacher Christina Mannschreck for information at 775-283-1743 or


Athletes of the Week for April 23-27 are Abigail Pradere for girls varsity track and Dominic Martinez for boys varsity track. These athletes, and all students who participate in school functions through leadership, clubs, and sports, deserve a high level of recognition and congratulations.


The CHS Student of the Week is Cristian Garcia. Though only a freshman, Cristian is taking a full load of advanced classes and doing extremely well. He maintains a grade of an “A” in Honors Biology, Health and Transitions, Health Science, Honors English 1, Personal Fitness, Honors Geometry, and Spanish 2. Cristian says, “I enjoy Honors Biology because it is a class that challenges me when it comes to receiving an A.” He is also a member of HOSA, he is CPR certified, and he participates in CHS junior varsity track and field as a thrower in discus and shot put. He also likes to read, write, swim, and play outdoors, and he desires to start a small business selling commodities. Finally, Cristian says about himself, “I also enjoy being an extrovert and making people laugh.” CHS is a positive-memories school because of students like Cristian.


CHS is pleased to recognize Paxton Spence as this week’s Senior in the Spotlight. Paxton has a GPA of 4.67 and is completing his high school career with a full load of classes, three of which are advanced placement. Paxton is an exemplary role model at the high school and is on track to receive both the Honors Diploma and the President’s Award for his outstanding GPA, test scores, and class rank. Additionally, he has been very active in sports as a member of the CHS varsity cross country team, track team, the varsity bowling team, and the junior varsity football team. This year, Paxton served as the co-captain of the cross country team as well as the captain of the bowling team. Paxton has worked as a tutor for the CHS Solutions Program for the past two years, helping struggling students. Outside of school, Paxton has spent many hours volunteering in the Carson City community. He plans to further his education at the University of Nevada, Reno, pursuing a degree in biology. CHS is proud of the contributions Paxton Spence has made to his high school and his community, and looks forward to hearing about the future accomplishments of this talented student.

Phil Brady is an English teacher at CHS. Dr. Brian Fox is the string orchestra director for Carson High School, Carson Middle School and Eagle Valley Middle School.