The bright red of the Jabberwocky school bus was rivaled by the vibrant flowers students were planting this Give Back Day, as MVRHS returned to Camp Jabberwocky for the second year in a row — many of the students the same who assisted the camp last May. Working with everything from power tools to garden soil, stacking wood for the camp’s new fireplace, and installing new lever locks with Billy Dillon, the foreman for South Mountain, everyone was hard at work and constantly moving around the sprawling campus.
Jabberwocky underwent renovations during the off-season, and students were assisting in putting together some of the final touches before the summer season kicks off and Jabberwocky is chock-full of campers.
Year-round caretaker Jack Knower was quick to share how incredibly grateful for the students’ dedication to the camp he was, as he ran around helping with the many tasks happening simultaneously. “I wouldn’t be able to get it all done without them,” he said.
“This isn’t something you see every day — students from all different grades all working together on one project,” said Andrew Vandall, a history teacher accompanying the students giving back at Jabberwocky. From freshmen gearing up for their first finals to juniors destressing after AP exams, everyone was part of the team.
“People in the community help out a lot with us teenagers, so it’s really nice to be able to give back,” said Jenaleigh Griffin, a junior at MVRHS, who was part of a group of students putting the finishing touches on new flower boxes.
Other students moved cabin to cabin, removing old doorknobs and installing more accessible lever locks on all doors. Although they were rookies, no one hesitated to pull out the power drill, and handles falling off and finicky drills didn’t get them down. A feeling of pride was palpable — and visible in their smiles — when they found success and the door locked behind them.
“I’ve definitely never done anything like this,” said Alyssa Lemoi, another teacher accompanying the MVRHS students. “It’s so wonderful to be able to give back and, like I told them, they’re learning applicable skills for the future.”