May Day Festival 2017

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Celebrating the Spring Season

Yesterday was Golden Valley Charter School's May Day Festival. It is a beautiful annual event when our school celebrates the Spring Season and the new growth surrounding this time of year. 

The main event is the May Pole Dance, performed by the 8th graders dressed in flowing white dresses (for the girls) and white clothing (for the boys) and beautiful handmade flower crowns. The dancers hold differently colored ribbons. The dance is choreographed so that when the dance ends, the ribbons have wrapped the pole in a colorful tapestry. Musicians playing lively music accompany the dancers as they skip around the pole. After the dance, the plaited ribbons are taken off the pole and presented to the teacher for a keepsake (this is much harder than it sounds!). 

To set the stage, our 1st graders are led by the May Day Queen and parade in to encircle the stage with rose petals. She is usually an alumna from Golden Valley Charter School, chosen from a short list given to the Festival Committee. She wears a beautiful flowing dress befitting a Queen for a regal event. 

The Festival Committee had to do things a little differently this year because we have 2 sets of 8th graders. The committee decided on 2 poles, one for each class, and the classes would dance simultaneously. Also, they decided that instead of choosing 1 May Queen, the 2 sets of first graders would be led by their respective teachers. For the first time (as far as I am aware, at least) we had May King!

Our May Day Queen and King led their classes around both dance areas before settling down in their Courts. It's such a lovely way to introduce the dance, and it gives our youngest grade a taste of what to look forward to. It gives them pride to know of their role in preparing the stage for the main event. 

My Memories

My daughter performed the dance with her class last year. I remember every moment, from making her crown, choosing her dress, braiding her hair, watching her dance. It rained that week and that morning, so I was prepared with a raincover for my camera. As God's gift, the rain stopped while they were performing and I have beautiful photos from the dance. She looks completely different now! Looking back on the year, I watched her transition from "middle school child" to "high school young adult". It pained me a little. I longed to keep the child a little longer (selfish, I know, but I'm a mother and entitled to this longing).  

We still have a few more years to go for my son. Am I looking forward to it? Given that it means a transition to high school, yes and no. I'll let you know when that time comes. 

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