CTE presents cocoa, cookies, Christmas cheer in the barn

Event open to all elementary-aged WISD students

CHRISTMAS IN COMING. On Friday at 4:00 the barn will be alive with fun, games and Santa. The event is free and open to all WISD elementary-aged students. (photo or infographic by Brandon Racus)

The sounds of playful laughing. The smell of hot cocoa and freshly baked cookies. Children darting between their parents’ feet and enjoying the Christmas cheer.

The CTE center is hosting Christmas at the Barn on Friday from 4:30 to 6:00.

Christmas at the Barn is a community outreach done by those in the CTE center with the goal of showcasing parts of the CTE departments and adding some festive spirit to the holidays.

“It is just a community outreach for CTE and people from the main campus are going to come in and join us just to have a little bit more,” business teacher Cheryl Gehovak said. “It’s a community outreach just for the elementary aged kids to come and kick off the Christmas season.”

For many, it has been far too long since the last Christmas at the Barn, which had been canceled for the past two years due to COVID-19.

“This is our third one in the five years we’ve been here in the CTE center,” Gehovak said. “We did it the first year we were here in 2018. We did one in 2019. We didn’t do one in 2020 and 2021 because of COVID. So now we’re back.”

Each department in the CTE is hosting an activity ranging from providing food to providing police cars and firetrucks to hair tinsel.

“Mrs. Price’s husband is in the fire department and so he and the guys are gonna come and bring the fire truck,” ag teacher Amanda Traylor said. “I will have a petting zoo. There’s going to be all kinds of Christmas games and different things for the kids to do.”

High school students are also going to be participating in the festivities by coordinating with their departments and providing a helping hand.

“We’re gonna have an IdentiKid booth, a cornhole game, and some of us will be assigned to watch over a few hallways and make sure people aren’t where they’re not supposed to be,” law student and senior Reid Henderson said. “We act as both security and entertainment to make sure everyone is safe”

For many at the CTE, Christmas at the Barn is also a prime way to recruit new members to their clubs and extracurricular activities.

“We are going to use Christmas at the barn as an outreach opportunity by talking to people about the first tech challenge and what we do as a team, as well as having fun with driving the robot,” robotics president and senior James Rogers said. “We hope that by participating in this we can gather more interest, and potentially future members.”

Christmas at the Barn is not only a way for the CTE to showcase what it does and how it helps students, it also acts as a way for some children to experience the Christmas spirit that many take for granted.

“There will be animals they can pet, and there will be Santa,” cosmetology teacher Carla Hernandez said. “It’s something we can do to bring people together because not that many kids get to experience Christmas and things like that.”