A historic year comes to close

Reliving the best moments from the 2015-16 school year

The smoke rises over the building announcing Mr. Ruffing as new principal.

gif by Mr. Rogers

The smoke rises over the building announcing Mr. Ruffing as new principal.

It’s been nine months since the first day of class, and in those past nine months the students and faculty have taken part in a long list of accomplishments. It has been one of the best years in school history, from the athletics to the arts and entertainment. And there were other unique experiences as such as saying goodbye to the man that has been the face of Elder for so long in Mr. Otten, and welcoming Mr. Ruffing as he begins his tenure as the next Principal of Elder High.

I am definitely excited. I know I have big shoes to fill, and I am very fortunate as this has been my goal since I came out of college.”

— Mr. Ruffing

Mr. Otten has been a great leader for Elder to the point where words cannot do him justice. As Mr. Ruffing told me he is a family man. His family pancake breakfasts that he cooks us on Wednesdays it just one way he shows his appreciation not just for his students, but for our families as well. As many know, Mr. Otten’s love for the family, and his love for Elder has led to the new name for the Elder Family Picnic. For now on it will be called the Tom & Bonnie Otten Alumni Picnic. Mr. Otten definitely went out with a bang. Other notable departures from the faculty in 2016 include Mr. Jameson, Mr. Hilvert and the great author of Soldiers of Misfortune and fantastic English teacher Mr. Briede.

Faculty entering retirement
Faculty entering retirement

This school year Elder’s athletics set new heights. With GCL titles in football, soccer, basketball, wrestling, and bowling it made for quite an exciting year. Mr. Dabbelt told me about some of the major accomplishments this year.

“Joey Sabato’s records in assists and goals along with Tommy Kaemer earning the Gatorade Player of the Year in the state of Ohio, and being an Army All-American were some big player accomplishments this school year,” said Dabbelt.

Tommy became the second Elder player in school history to play in the Army All-American game. Other notable sports accomplishments were Peyton Ramsey winning POY in the GCL for football, and Frankie Hofmeyer in basketball. The hockey team also set some records as they earned their first .500% season in program history, but they did not stop there. They went on to win their league, and the league tournament. It was a great year for Elder athletics.

Tommy at the US Army All American Game (photo by thecatholicbeat.sacredheartradio.com)

The art and entertainment department this year also had some unique accomplishments. Right now the art department has three students who’s artworks are in the 2016 Congressional Art Competition, “Eye Candy” by Collin Scheiner, “Silent Night” by Garren Messmore, and “A Tale of a Whale” by Drew Brown. The arts and entertainment students also recently put together with Seton, a succesful production of West Side Story. Set Designer and Elder teacher Mr. Rogers talked about the difference of this play from years past. “There was much more dancing, and it was a more dramatic show,” said Rogers. “West Side Story is a classic musical and it was a dramatic challenge for the students took part in the play.” The play was a smash hit as many who saw the play really liked it, such as Mr. Otten. He came on the announcements several days in a row telling the students how great it was, and that if we get a chance we should go see it.

Elder and Seton perform West Side Story
Mr. Rogers
Elder and Seton perform West Side Story

As the remaining days of the 2016 school year come to close, the Seniors prepare for graduation, and the remaining classes look to the end of exams, and the few great months of summer. While the senior class, the departing faculty members and especially Mr. Otten will be missed, Elder High School will look to te 2016-17 school year to make another memorable year for as Mr. Ploehs would say, “Carpe Diem!” Seize the day.