It’s the time of year when high school students across the Cherry Creek School District join with their teachers and families, friends and neighbors, to turn heartfelt wishes into wonderful experiences for children battling serious illnesses. Watch this space during the next few weeks for heartwarming Wish Week wrap-ups!
Cherry Creek High School
Power Week at Cherry Creek High School wrapped up with an assembly that was part pep rally, part dance party. The Bruin Brothers, a staff band, warmed up the crowd before the “Fab Five” took the floor. They are a Unified/Open Arms dance group that includes students with special needs. They were followed by the AquaPoms, an all-girl dance group, and a group of teachers and staff who ‘busted a move.’ Next to perform was a group of senior boys who had competed in the Mr. Creek competition earlier in the week. The final performers were the award-winning CCHS Poms, who were joined by the Bruin mascot.
It was all part of CCHS’s Power Week, a school-wide effort to raise funds and awareness for the Gabby Krause Foundation. Gabby was an amazing six-year old who died in September 2004 after a courageous 19-month battle with brain cancer. Her wish was that every child who had to spend time at a hospital battling serious illness or injury could have a bag filled with books, toys, games and other activities to enjoy.
Molly, a 2013 CCHS graduate, and Marcus, were special guests at the assembly. They have both received Bags of Fun while facing serious health challenges. They were on hand as the CCHS community presented more than $25,000 to the Gabby Krause Foundation, to help provide more Bags of Fun to children who are hospitalized.
Overland High School Wish Week
Well before Overland High School celebrated its 7th annual Wish Week from Feb. 12-16, student body officers visited Make-A-Wish headquarters in Greenwood Village to meet with the Kids for Wish Kids coordinators and wish granters. The student leaders shared Overland’s fundraising plans and learned more about the Make-A-Wish organization. It was a transformative and energizing experience. The OHS students also got to meet Ashaun, Overland’s Wish kid. They were reminded of the importance of giving and were excited to kick off another successful Wish Week.
Overland’s Wish Week was planned around some of Ashaun’s favorite things, including anything to do with construction, the color red, going fast, and Beauty and the Beast. OHS students, families, staff and community members raised $16,000 which will help fulfill Ashaun's wish to build a handicapped-accessible park in Aurora so he can play with his friends and all kids can play together.
Eaglecrest High School Wish Week
Wish Week at Eaglecrest High School was very personal and powerful this year. After losing one of their own - football and wrestling coach Armando Rodriguez - to a heart attack this fall, students chose to support the American Heart Association during the school’s Wish Week, held Feb. 2-9.
EHS Raptors kicked off the week with a spirited and inspiring pep assembly. Coach Rodriguez’s wife spoke to students about her loss and how grateful she is that Eaglecrest chose to raise money for the American Heart Association. The most impactful moment of the assembly was when students held a moment of silence for all the families who have been impacted by heart attacks and strokes.
Six local restaurants participated in Wish Week by hosting benefit dinners for the EHS community and donating a portion of their proceeds to the American Heart Association. Wish Week also included spirt days, Mr. EHS, our male talent competition, a $1 hat day in which some EHS feeder schools participated, as well as Miracle Minutes and a dodgeball tournament. In addition, some EHS teachers dyed their hair red to help the school reach its goal. You can see some of them here.
In the end, Eaglecrest students, staff and community members followed their hearts and raised $9,500 for the American Heart Association in honor of Coach Rodriguez.
Cherokee Trail High School Wish Week
Cherokee Trail High School held its annual Wish Week Jan. 29 through Feb. 2. With a little help from the CT Art Department, the commons were turned into the underwater wonderland of Atlantis, in honor of CT’s 7-year-old Wish Kid Jeremiah. His wish is to go to Atlantis.
During Wish Week, the Cougars hosted dodgeball, boys’ volleyball and several “Pack the Gym” events. The highlight of the week was the pep assembly, where a sea of teal was created in the gym by 2,000+ students and staff members all wearing Wish shirts. At the assembly, Jeremiah brought the crowd to tears when he took the microphone to give a huge thank you to the CT community for making his wish come true. As soon as everyone dried their eyes, they were tearing up again as senior Halle Conroy sang “Rise Up” and the crowd did just that for Jeremiah. CTHS was thrilled to reveal that more than $42,000 for Make-A-Wish Colorado to grant Jeremiah’s wish and support other children fighting life-threatening illnesses.
Smoky Hill High School Wish Week
Smoky Hill High School kicked off Wish Week season in Cherry Creek Schools. The Buffaloes held their 8th annual Wish Week from January 22-27. It featured dozens of fun events, including a coin drive, a trivia bowl, a Mr. & Ms. Smoky Hill contest, a dodgeball tournament, restaurant nights, t-shirt sales and a winter dance. The events were all very successful and raised an impressive $27,000 for Make-A-Wish of Colorado.
Those funds will help make wishes come true for several children, including Smoky’s own Wish Kid, 11-year-old Kendetrick. He is a sixth-grader at Campus Middle School and has been through two open heart surgeries and had a liver transplant last May. Kendetrick's one true wish is to go the Bahamas. He wants to see the ocean, pet a dolphin and stay at the Atlantis Resort. Make-A-Wish of Colorado will grant Kendetrick's wish next month. The entire Smoky Hill community will be with him in spirit as he and his family travel to the Bahamas for some fun, sun, sand and surf!