Kings' Courier

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J-Day 2018

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“Who wants a cookie?” asked Engle, which greatly lightened the mood before getting on the warm bus and out of the frigid wind. J Day 2018 started off memorable and somehow ended up even more memorable. Many kids returned with their bellies full, new artwork, and a lot of miles under their feet. The day, however, did not start just as Mr. Engle would have envisioned. The bus was supposed to leave at 7:15. Mr. Engle made this perfectly clear. He emphasized the bus would pull out at 7:16. Sadly, this did not happen. The bus Engle was scheduled to drive had blown a fuse and we were forced to wait until we obtained the key to a new bus before we left.

A delayed bus meant arriving at Ball State late. Once again, Mr. Engle was forced to change his plans. He was not allowed to park his minibus where he had for the previous 10 years before. The juniors, sophomores, and I walked to the Student Center where we patiently waited on Mr. Engle to come back. By then we were too late to attend opening ceremonies which made everyone a little bummed. Engle capitalized on this opportunity and gave us the grand tour of Ball State. He showed us The Atrium which was filled with many working students, the library, and he pointed out where the Daily News of Ball State took place. We also came across a guy on the sidewalk who trying to shove Jesus down the throat of anybody who would listen.

After the grand tour, the sophomore, juniors, and I went our separate ways to listen to different speakers. The pamphlets that Engle passed out to us offered a wide variety of different speakers. Ashli Key, Zach Fields, Caleb Johnson, and I attended a speaker who discussed how to better your writing and story coverage of sports. Speaker Tom Hayes is in charge of the newspaper and yearbook departments of Ben Davis high school. He worked as a writer for the Indy Star covering any sport and team imaginable before settling down as a teacher. Hayes struggles to find students to cover sports even at Ben Davis, the second largest high school in Indiana. To be a good sports writer Hayes said a writer must attend a practice to get to know the ends and outs of the sport along with the athletes. He also made a point that the best stories do not come from the stud athletes, but they come from the athletes who show up and work hard every day even if they do not get to play.

When the speaker concluded, Ashli and I found ourselves starving. We set out to find a good place to eat. To my disgust, Ashli wanted to go to Chick-fil-a. I tagged along and found Papa John’s in the atrium. After we finished our lunch, we decided to walk toward the village. We quickly met up with all of the other students from our school and sat outside a coffee shop/tattoo parlor until it was time to meet back at the student center to ride home. The bus ride home was quiet enough to hear a pin drop. I personally took the best nap of my entire life on that bus ride home. With the help of my friends, fellow newspaper writers, my tour guide, the knowledgeable speaker, and the beautiful campus, my first J-Day experience is one that I will never forget.

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Lewis Cass High School, Walton, Indiana,
J-Day 2018