Catoctin High School Leo Club Collects Jeans for National “Teens for Jeans” Campaign

The Catoctin High School (CHS) Leo Club is collecting jeans for Teens for Jeans, a national campaign from, one of the largest global not-for-profit organizations for young people and social change. Teens for Jeans encourages young people across the country to run a jean drive in their school or community to help provide clothing for youth experiencing homelessness.

Over a million young people experience homelessness in the United States every year, and one of the most requested items that young people in homeless shelters ask for is a pair of jeans. In the past eight years, young people across the country have collected over five million pairs of jeans through Teens for Jeans. This year, the top collecting school will win a $3,000 grant, the school that comes in second place will win a $2,000 grant, and the school that comes in third place will win a $1,000 grant.

Members of the community can support the CHS Leo Club’s drive by dropping off their gently used denim at Catoctin High School, located on 14745 Sabillasville Road in Thurmont, until February 29, 2016.

For more information, please visit You can contact the CHS Leo Club at catoctinleoclub@gmail to arrange drop off/pick-up.

Visit CHS Leo Club at, @catoctinleoclub on Twitter, and

If you are involved with any organization in this area helping our homeless teens, please contact Wendy Candela at 301-717-7813 and leave a message.


Emmitsburg High School Alumni Association Donates a Piece of History to Emmitsburg Library

The Emmitsburg High School Alumni Association has donated a copy of the school’s history to the Emmitsburg Library. The library is housed in the original building of the old high school. The library area today is housed on the floors that once housed grades one through six. The building has been renovated for multiple uses for the town and community.

The five-hundred-page history was compiled by the organization’s historian, Joyce Bruchey, with contributions from the school’s alumni and the local community. The basic book was printed in 2013, and a supplement was added in 2015.

A time line of public education in Emmitsburg—one-room school houses in the area and articles and photos from the Emmitsburg Historical Society—tell the early history of the school. Mementoes, class photos, and articles cover classes from 1923 to 1968, when the high school closed. The earliest memento is a souvenir program from the class of 1910’s graduation. A copy of the school’s first yearbook from 1928 contains information of the upper classes, sports teams, and clubs.

Photos and articles of the staff from 1898 to 1972 are included. The high school joined Thurmont High School in 1969 to create the new Catoctin High School. The building then became the home of grades kindergarten through eighth, and class photos of the elementary students during those years are included. The alumni organization has reached out to members of the 1969-1972 classes of Catoctin High to join the organization since they were a part of the Emmitsburg School for most of their education years.

The history is divided by decades, with supplements of the news, events, popular culture, and cost of living prices. Following class photos are memorabilia of the class. Graduation class photos cover most of the years from 1928 to 1968. The organization is asking the community’s help in locating class photos from the following years: 1898-1922; 1924; 1927; 1933; 1938; and 1939. An attempt has been made to list graduates from the years without photos.

An original copy of the school’s newspaper, The Tattler, dates back to June 1925. Later it was called E-Hi Times, and the earliest copy in EHSAA possession is December 1944. The association is seeking copies of the old school newspapers. Early articles from The Emmitsburg Chronicle and The Frederick News-Post are included, as well as photos of the school’s growth. The Class of 1964 issued a yearbook after a nearly forty-year hiatus, and the following years’ books add depth to the high school’s last years.

A brief history of the Emmitsburg High School Alumni Association, its scholarship winners, past officers, and reunion photos are found in the last chapter. The book includes excerpts from an antique copy of The Service Record Book of Men and Women of the Emmitsburg, Maryland and Community, sponsored by Francis X. Elder Post 14 American Legion and Emmitsburg Businessmen. It lists honor roll and photos of those who served in WWI and WWII. Statistical data of Emmitsburg in 2009-2011, and the United States economy during the years of Emmitsburg High School’s existence, concludes the book.

The Alumni Association continues to search for items related to its school’s history. Material can be sent to Joyce Bruchey, EHSAA historian at 6444 Middleburg Road, Keymar, MD 21757. Copies of the book may be obtained by contacting her at 410-775-7921 or The original book with the supplement is $35.00 plus $5.00 shipping. A supplement alone for those who earlier purchased the history book costs $10.00 plus $3.00 shipping.


Joyce Bruchey (left) presents copy of the Emmitsburg High School Memory Book to staff members at the Emmitsburg Library.


Thurmont Middle School Science Olympiad Team Brings Home the Medals

The Thurmont Middle School Science Olympiad team competed in January in the Frederick County Science Olympiad tournament. They earned two gold medals, two silver medals, one 4th place, four 5th places, and one 6th place! The results were as follows: Air Trajectory—2nd place; Bio Process Lab—5th place; Crime Busters—1st place; Disease Detectives—1st place; Elastic Launched Glider—5th place; Invasive Species—4th place; Picture This—2nd place; Road Scholar—5th place; Scrambler—5th place; Wind Power—5th place; Write it Do it—6th place.

Thurmont Middle School is so proud of their team! Their next tournament will be held on Saturday, February 20, 2016, at the University of Maryland. There is no doubt that they will do a super job! A huge thank you goes out to Mrs. Mize, the team’s coach, as well as to all the parents who support all of the students’ efforts.


Thurmont American Legion Offers Scholarships and Government Experience to Catoctin High School Students

For those of you who aren’t aware, there is money available for College from the Thurmont American Legion. Post 168 in Thurmont offers four Scholarships each year for qualifying Catoctin High School (CHS) seniors. They also hold an Oratorical Contest each year, with a monetary prize for the top three places. The applications for the scholarships are at the CHS Guidance Office.

The Applications for Boys State will soon be at CHS for high school juniors. Boys State is a week-long stay, where the boys set up a mock government similar to our State government; they have all the offices and make important decisions. For your information, one of the questions on all the applications for Military Academies is: Are you an Eagle Scout or have you attended Boys State.

Last year, they had only one applicant from Catoctin High School for the Boys State. Of the four scholarships, only two were applied for. The Oratorical contest was to be held in January, but no student was interested in competing, so no contest was held.


New Club Starts at Thurmont Elementary

A Good News Club started this January at Thurmont Elementary School for children in grades three through five. The club, sponsored by Child Evangelism Fellowship, is a non-denominational club that features games, music, snacks, and Bible stories. The club meets after school in the school cafeteria, from 3:45-4:45 p.m. every Tuesday (unless school is closed). Children must have a signed registration form, as well as a note to the school to attend. All children are dismissed to the cafeteria at dismissal time at 3:10 p.m. Supervised recreation is led by staff members until the club officially starts at 3:45 p.m. Parents meet their children at the cafeteria doors at the end of the club. Outreach projects are planned to help the community. Children who do not attend a specific church will be encouraged to attend a local church with their families.

The Child Evangelism Fellowship is an international organization that sponsors clubs all over the world, including over eighty-four clubs in Maryland. Good News Clubs are in six schools in Frederick County, including Thurmont Elementary. The club is open to all children from kindergarten to fifth grade, but is designed for upper elementary-aged children. The club gives the children the opportunity to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ and enjoy fellowship with other children. The team leaders are all trained and have been background checked. Parents are welcome to attend any club meeting and to participate.

For more information or to register, contact any of the Thurmont Team Leaders: Sherri Eichelberger at, Davada Irons at, Kari Tuttle (, or Jan Jones (


Thurmont Middle School Students Answer Christmas Wish

Thurmont Middle School students were inspired by one of their fellow students to answer the Christmas wish of a young arson survivor to collect Christmas cards. Safyre Terry is an eight-year-old girl from Schenectady, New York, who suffered burns on seventy-five percent of her body and lost her family due to an arson fire two years ago. Safyre was the only one of four children to survive, found under the debris protected only by her father’s body.

Over the next year, Safyre endured many surgeries and lost her right hand and left foot. This year, in anticipation of the holiday season, she and her custodial aunt bought a Christmas card holder from a secondhand store. Safyre couldn’t wait to fill it up with Christmas cards. Her aunt, however, told Safyre that she didn’t think they would get more than ten cards to put on the tree that could hold close to one hundred. Safyre wasn’t discouraged, and she was so excited when she received her first card that her aunt took a picture to share with friends and family. When a friend of the family saw the picture, he posted it to Facebook, asking a few friends if they could send a card. Within days, the picture and Safyre’s story had gone viral. When Logan Riley of Thurmont heard Safyre’s story and her wish, he immediately asked his mom if he could send a card. However, after thinking for a few moments about what type of card to send, he realized that he wanted to do more than just send a normal card, he wanted to share her story and wish. The next morning, Logan went directly to the principal’s office at school; he wanted to share Safyre’s story and wish and ask the principal if they could invite fellow students to participate. The school principal said they would love to help him share the story and to invite his fellow sixth grade students to make Safyre’s wish come true.

Over the next few days, a plan was made to have Logan share Safyre’s story and allow the students to make and write cards to be sent to Safyre. Logan continued to share the story with other classmates and students, as well as with the after school club he attended. Logan was so focused and motivated to make sure Safyre’s wish came true that he forgot to send his own letter to Santa this year. When asked what he was going to ask for from Santa this year, he paused for a moment, and then stated, “How many signatures do you think we can fit on each card?”

On December 16 and 17, 2015, Thurmont Middle School sixth grade students created and composed cards to be sent to Safyre, using their extra class time and lunch/recess time. In addition, students from sixth through eighth grade, who attended the after school club, also created and signed cards for Safyre. The cards were then mailed to Safyre’s hometown post office in New York in time to make sure she had them for Christmas. Since Safyre’s wish went viral the first week of December, the story has reached people all over the world. So many were touched by her innocent wish and heart-wrenching story that she received hundreds of thousands of cards, so many that her local post office was overwhelmed. Logan and his fellow students and friends at Thurmont Middle School remind us all that even the smallest acts of kindness and consideration can make a difference in the lives of others.

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