National Red Ribbon week is more than a simple anti-drug movement: It is a reminder to every child that they have the ability to determine the direction of their lives. Turlock schools championed Red Ribbon week through an array of positive activities including door decorating competitions and themed dress up days.
Walnut Elementary kicked off their Red Ribbon Week with sports day and hosted special guest Tom Mendonca, a Turlock native who played baseball at Fresno State where he won the title of College World Series Most Outstanding Player. His advice to students was to stay on the straight and narrow path if they want to see how far they are capable of going.
“I always went to class,” Mendonca recalls. “I felt that I had to go in order to deserve to do my favorite thing in the world, play baseball.”
Across town at Crowell Elementary, Wendy Langford’s first grade students endured a visit from Viola Swamp, the storybook character of the book “Ms. Nelson is Missing.” The witchy Ms. Swamp was a demanding teacher that told students to behave well and to not do drugs.
Brown Elementary students Red Ribbon Week activities culminated in their annual Halloween costume parade. The school also hosted a recycling and canned food drive, the proceeds of which will be donated to Turlock Together.
“Our theme focused on good character and good choices. We tried to emphasize to students what they can do and not what they can’t do,” said PTA President Kristine Lemke.