The Middle Park High School Booster Club was started two years ago by Shawna Deplata with a goal of helping Middle Park High School (MPHS) programs, clubs and sports teams find sponsorships and donors to help offset the financial shortfalls in funding.
Kris Holinka, MPHS parent and booster club member, said, “The funding for many activities falls short of the overall needs of the group and so they spend time fundraising to try and keep their program alive and active. We wanted to help.” Holinka said, for example, the basketball team spends the majority of its participation fees on transportation, referees and other associated costs. They may not have enough for balls, uniforms or other necessities. The Booster Club would like to help fill in the gaps. “We realize that fund raising can be a good learning experience and are not trying to eliminate that aspect of the educational experience.” said Holinka. “We know many small clubs and programs can’t do the things they want to do, so the goal of our Booster Club is to allow them to focus on their program or activity and spend less time on fundraising. We think we can help find a balance.”
During the West Grand vs. Middle Park basketball game this week, the Booster Club decided to bring awareness to the local law enforcement agencies throughout the county and do something fun and goofy. Holinka said, “We wanted to bring the two communities together and shed light on the local agencies so our kids can see the law enforcement officers in a positive light and realize they are people too.”
In a brainstorming session early in the school year, Addie Deplata said we should do something with the “Git Up Dance”. A spark of enthusiasm lit a fire and pushed the group to put on a show. Kris Holinka, who works for the Colorado Parks and Wildlife office in Hot Sulphur Springs, said, “I have the contacts, let’s do this!” And so the “Git United in Purple” movement started.
Holinka enlisted a cast of local agencies that would not be afraid to show some moves on the dance floor and at Monday night’s rivalry match between Middle Park Panthers and the West Grand Mustang basketball teams, the list of the local hometown everyday heroes included the Granby Police Department, Grand County Sheriff’s office, Colorado State Patrol, Colorado Parks and Wildlife and the staff from a crew from the Rocky Mountain National Park showcasing their version of the Git Up Dance.
Hali Weimerskirch, Kindergarten Teacher, Granby Elementary School and Middle Park High School Head Cheerleading Coach spent several practice sessions with the cast of performers teaching them the specific dance moves for the song. Weimerskirch said, “We had a bunch of fun and they were all good sports.”
“I had a blast and I hope the students and staff see these guys in a different light.” If they were intimidated or scared of them, maybe this helped change their perception.
The MPHS Booster Club has their sights on an upcoming Corn Hole tournament March 21st at the Inn at SilverCreek. It will be a fun family event and the club is looking for sponsorships, donors and volunteers to help organize the tournament.