Reaction to the Christmas Dance Story

Posted on December 2, 2007 by


Writer’s Note: I did not attend the CHS Christmas Dance or the Club 112 Christmas Dance.

Throughout my time as a staff writer and editor, this story Kareem and I wrote about the competing Christmas dances is perhaps the most interesting. Here, the perception from some members of the public is that the big bad administration is trying to deprive their students from having fun at Club 112, and Ryan Powell (owner of Formal Affairs and Club 112) is the hero for holding a dance at Club 112.

While Dan Cunningham (principal) and Bryan Waltz (associate principal) decided to discontinue doing business with Powell, Powell is not as heroic as he seems.

Our interview with Powell played a large role in making the story memorable. For example, he began his criticism of the CHS administration by emphasizing the fact that he did not receive a thank you from them. However, after Kareem and I pointed out that the letter he received contained a thank you, he was forced to shift his viewpoint, a shift perhaps subtle to some but fairly obvious to us.

One part of the story that did not make it into the Hi-Times is a dispute between Powell and the CHS administration. Bryan Waltz (associate principal) wrote a letter to Powell; in the letter, Waltz states that Powell valued his facilities at $5,000 in 2004. During our interview, Powell denied it, but Waltz gave us a copy of the contract, a contract that was created by Powell according to Waltz, where it was stated that he indeed valued the facilities at $5,000 (in the year 2004).

However, the most comical aspect of the interview was when he tried to assert that our publications and the CHS administration go hand and hand, an assertion that is completely false, as we receive no funding from the administration (all of it comes from advertising) and no prior review from Dan Cunningham (principal).

Somehow, he thought, the newspaper and the administration were out to get him. According to Powell, nobody from our publication called him and asked to advertise, but the truth is that Chris Wells, our business editor, indeed contacted him about advertising, and Powell told Wells that he did not want to advertise. Besides, as a publication that needs money, we will take money from any legal form of advertising, regardless of whether the advertiser is friendly with CHS administration.

After researching this story, it seems to me that Powell is upset that the CHS administration is no longer working with him. He claims that the public is behind him, noting that many students came to him asking him to hold his own dance at Club 112 (he declined to give specific names). While I cannot deny that his dance is popular, I am skeptical of his aforementioned claim since he could not verify it.

Still, one must remember that Powell has the right to hold a competing Christmas dance. Students have the right to attend either dance, and while no statistics regarding ticket sales have been released, Powell’s dance was most likely the more popular dance of the evening. If Powell continues to compete with CHS, the student council will need to change the structure of the dance unless they are content with playing second fiddle to the Club 112 dance.

§Spencer Roach

Posted in: Editorial