PUNXSUTAWNEY — During the final week that the Punxsutawney Area High School Class of 2011 was able to share together, seniors not only shared memories of character, but also memories of scholarship as they came together as a whole for Class Night.
Class Secretary Marcy Sallack opened the program by saying the night would celebrate individual and group achievements of the class.
Principal David London expressed his wishes for the class as it enters the world. He also congratulated seniors on being May 2011 graduates.
He also spoke for Superintendent Dr. Keith Wolfe, who was unable to attend yet extended best wishes for the Class of 2011.
During the presentation, Emily Cassidy, guidance counselor, presented Honor Students Awards, and said it was an honor to be able to wear the blue National Honor Society cords and the gold honor cords around the collars of the graduation robes.
Among the Class of 2011, there were 99 members who were given the honor through hard work and determination to wear the gold cords.
There were 50 students with the honor to display the blue cords with their gowns.
Special recognition was given to James Kachmar, Milea Schall and Keri Dinsmore, since they were the top three students of their graduating class.
Kachmar was valedictorian, Dinsmore was salutatorian, and Schall was the third honor student.
Gold certificates were given to students of the class who placed in the advanced category of all topics — reading, writing, math and science — of the PSSA testings. This achievement was awarded by guidance counselor Jennifer White.
Also, the 2011 Variety Show directors — Hannah Neal, Tyler Kuntz and Mason Stiver — presented two checks: One for $7,913 for the Margaret C. Boles Foundation, and the second, a check for $7,913 for the post-graduation party.
As London thanked the class for the checks, he noted that the class was able to pull together to make the show a success.
"There has never been a sell-out Variety Show the day before," he said.
Class Hearts is designated for a member of the class who has the most leadership, is caring and is advanced. This person is chosen by all of his or her classmates, class President Adam Murdock explained.
This year, the Class Hearts recipient was Hannah Neal.
"I thank all of the members of the class for awarding me the Class Hearts. It really means a lot to me," she said.
Much of the night recognized the students who received scholarships. These were bestowed upon the students for their academic and athletic achievements as well as their personal character.
Class Night was summed up by Lucas Burke, class vice-president, who said that the class has stuck together like family through the good times, such as the Variety Show, and the hard times, such as the loss of two classmates.
"Wherever they are, I know they will be proudly looking down next week when we receive our diplomas," he said. "If one of us succeeds, we all succeed."