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Cottonwood Heights Journal

Spirits are high at Canyon View Elementary

Jan 18, 2017 03:46PM ● By Rubina Halwani

Charilyn Gustafson’s fourth-grade class shows off their prize-winning Bengal Tiger trophy for wearing the most school spirit attire. (Rayna Drago/PTA President)

By Rubina Halwani | [email protected]
Students at Canyon View Elementary get to celebrate school spirit on a designated day each month throughout the school year. Classes compete against each other for the roving Bengal Tiger trophy.  On Jan. 6, students in Charilyn Gustafson’s fourth grade class garnered the prize. Gustafson hopes her class will maintain their school spirit for the rest of this year.
“It's funny how something so small motivates these kids. It’s our first year doing this whole contest,” said PTA President Rayna Drago. 
Principal B.J. Weller purchased the Bengal Tiger trophy and allowed it to be used for the month-to-month contest. The winning class keeps the trophy for the entire month.
Students can wear school colors or purchase a school shirt from Spirit Wear, the school retailer. Proceeds from Spirit Wear sales go to the PTA for school supplies, programs and field trips. T-shirts average about $10–15, depending on the style.
One shirt features a student-drawn Bengal Tiger. Every year, students in kindergarten through fourth grade compete in a design contest and vote to select the best design for a spirit shirt. Last year, former student Ryan Overson created the winning entry. His shirt features the slogan, “Respect the Cubs.” The contest for next year’s design will be held this April.
In addition to the monthly Spirit Days, the PTA schedules evening events for families to participate and raise additional school funds. On Jan. 10, families dined at Café Zupas in Holladay. The Utah-based business sponsors Spirit Night events for schools throughout the state. Between 20 to 25 percent of the revenue generated is apportioned for the school. Canyon View Elementary will receive close to $600 from the event.
“School Nights is in its fourth year,” said Jessica Caldiero, customer relations manager for Café Zupas and former PTA president. To date, the restaurant has donated over $250,000 to school communities and hosted an estimated 565 events. Each school can host up to three Spirit Nights at Café Zupas every year.
The PTA plans to use the funds to purchase iPads for first and second graders.
From Feb. 6-10, “we are going to Jersey Mike’s and it’s a weeklong event and we can decorate the store,” said Drago. She invites anyone interested in supporting the school to attend.