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Princeton Middle School students interact with veterans during field trip

Bluefield Daily Telegraph - 5/24/2024

May 24—princeton — Princeton Middle School eighth grade students took a field trip to the Princeton Recreation Center Thursday to celebrate the end of their eighth grade journey and the school year.

Those who made sufficient grades and demonstrated good behavior throughout the year were eligible to participate in the event, according to 8th grade Princeton Middle School team-leader Victoria Grogan.

"Its been a fun relaxed day for the kids to enjoy us as teachers enjoy the veterans, the different demonstrations. Just to celebrate the end of the 8th grade year," Grogan said.

The event included rely races, homeroom wars, a cookout and playground games. Parents and siblings were also able to spend time with their kids at the field trip or drop their kids off for the morning and afternoon.

"We are here today volunteering as part of the still serving campaign with the VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars). Every May, the VFW nationally coordinates a day of service, so any day of the month of May we participate in community events. So we're here to help celebrate the 8th graders and share our military service," Amy Huffman, Quartermaster for the VFW Post 96 said.

The VFW participated in the event for the first time by serving food to the students.

"We talked a little to the students but most of our participation was to serve the food, so we came out and cooked our hotdogs and facilitated some of the setup," Huffman said. "This is our first time with them and it's been wonderful. We've had a great opportunity to talk to a lot of the young people and to show, as veterans, our military. It allows the opportunity to have some skills that they might be interested in in the future and if they decide to pursue military careers then it's a good opportunity."

Grogan coordinated with the the VFW and the Sons of the American Revolution to expand the student's knowledge before Memorial Day.

"Memorial Day is coming and we want to make sure that students understand and learn from our veterans and Sons of the American Revolution because some of the students — they rarely have the opportunity to speak with these groups. So that community service piece is huge," Grogan said.

Students Alaya Ferrell and Grace Pettrey felt that the field trip was a rewarding experience for them and enjoyed the school trip.

"We had a lot of fun. We spent a lot of time with our family and some of our friends, with our teachers and it had lots of fun events, so really fun," Pettrey said. "It feels great just knowing that you're working towards something."

"Rewarding? Yes it really is. It's amazing," Ferrell said. "Today was really fun and I enjoyed being with my friends."

Although the girls are nervous for high school, they are excited to meet new friends and participate in sports and explore the new extracurriculars.

Student Addison Poole felt grateful for the experience and looks forward to high school.

"I really enjoyed it. Hanging out with my friends playing games, it's mostly a once in a lifetime thing," Poole said. "I'm really excited (for high school) I'm excited for the art program."

— Contact Tara Wyatt at

twyatt@bdtonline.com

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