Yeehaw Day Promotes Community Spirit and Fun

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This pony was at the petting zoo at Yeehaw Day.

 BY CHAZ PLAGER

 

 Palisades Elementary School held its annual fall carnival, Yeehaw Day, on Saturday, October 15.

 

Whether the event would be held or not seemed dubious at first due to a sudden rain shower, but it let up just 30 minutes before the afternoon festivities that started at 1 p.m.

 

Bunnies were at the petting zoo.

To speak personally, Yeehaw Day holds a lot of memories for me, because I attended Palisades Elementary, which is a kindergarten through fifth grade school, located on Via de la Paz.

 

Event organizers Johanna Minassian and Emma Klein feel the same way. Minassian attended her first Yeehaw Day, as a parent, eight years ago.

 

Yeehaw Day, started in 2004, was the brainchild of Nancy Fracchiolla, who was a parent at the school. She is now a visual and performing arts teacher at Palisades High School and recently directed “Mamma Mia!”

 

“A school builds bonds, and this event is to ensure those bonds stay connected, even into middle or high school,” Minassian said. “Specifically, our volunteers from Pali High– let them know we adore them and are grateful for their help.”

 

Attractions this year were apparently standard, however, they were far more lavish than when I was in elementary school. A petting zoo? Giant hamster balls for people? Kid me, would have killed for those, especially the hamster balls.

 

Beads were woven into this girl’s hair.

Aside from those, there were also unique attractions such as hair braiding and rides on a small train. Normal attractions such as a haunted house, cake walk, bouncy houses, and carnival attractions like bottle rings and darts were also there.

 

Catering was done by the Mexican restaurant Frida, which Ms. Minassian was kind enough to let me try for free. (It was delicious.)

 

Principal Juliet Herman is a replacement for Joan Ingle, who was principal while I was attending Pali elementary.

“Yeehaw represents the best of our Pali Elementary community, and it brings together parents and children to celebrate community spirit,” Herman said. “Some people believe this to be a fundraiser– it’s not. It’s a community builder. It’s an irreplaceable tradition for many, and I plan to have it continue for many years to come.”

Students could go in the life-sized hamster ball.

Students tried out their muscles in the carnival games at Yeehaw Day.

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