School Rivalry Generates Food for Local Pantry

Aubrey Hall, Photography Editor

Every year, student council representatives from Manitou and St. Mary’s High Schools team up to channel the rivalry between them into raising food for their communities. Traditionally, this food drive occurs during the week preceding Manitou’s first football game against St. Mary’s, and concludes when the executive board of the school who raised the most food gets to throw pie tins of whipped cream into the faces of the opposing board. This year, however, the drive culminated during the week leading up to Manitou’s first basketball game of the winter season against the Pirates, due to the fact that the football game had been too early in the season for the councils to plan anything elaborate.

In contrast to previous years, Manitou’s Food Drive Committee chair Mo Heiniger (12), and committee member Sage Stevens (11), made the decision to incorporate more service-oriented clubs, such as Key Club and National Honors Society, into the food collection process.

“As a member of a lot of different clubs, I thought that I might be able to get them involved in it and make sure that it was something that they were passionate about,” said Heiniger, “And as people who are in clubs dedicated to serving people in their community, I thought that that was the best route to go on.”

The clubs involved went to houses in Manitou and Colorado Springs neighborhoods and collected cans door-to-door. After these non-perishables had been collected, Heiniger was informed that the food would have to be weighed far earlier than expected.

“The food bank in Manitou Springs ended up being empty. The shelves were bare, they needed food, and we had it, so that just meant that we had to weigh the food that we did have earlier, and go through that process earlier so that we could get them the food,” said Heiniger. She also said that while it caused some initial difficulty, it was lucky that that problem had occurred while Manitou had the food necessary to supply for that need.

After the collection of food from area neighborhoods, as well as the contributed cans of students throughout the week leading up to the game against St. Mary’s, the total was around 800 pounds, a number that was to be announced during halftime of the basketball game that took place on Dec. 10 at St. Mary’s High School.

When the game began, Mustang fans arrived clad entirely in black, the spirit attire coordinated for the event by Manitou’s student council. Manitou led the Saint Mary’s Pirates at the conclusion of every quarter throughout the game. At the half, Manitou was leading St. Mary’s by 11 points, the score being 19 to 30. When the buzzer sounded, four members of each school’s student council headed to the center of the court, as it was announced that St. Mary’s had raised 3,500 pounds of food, beating Manitou in the annual food drive once again. At the conclusion of the announcement, Manitou’s council members had pie tins filled with whipped cream pressed onto their faces by SMHS council members. By the time the game concluded, Manitou had beat St. Mary’s 63 to 45, and Manitou’s student council had raised 800 pounds of food for the pantry at Manitou Springs Elementary School.