December 14, 2012 / News

Cedarburg lends a helping hand to East Rockaway

Written by Evan Blackwell, CJE

Last week over in the Idea File area, we posted a feature article on the yearbook staff at East Rockaway High School in New York which is still trying to recover from the flooding that impacted their school when Hurricane Sandy hit the east coast on Oct. 29.

Numerous folks have stepped forward to help East Rockaway with sponsorships and donations. Some of those folks came from another Walsworth yearbook school – Cedarburg High School in Cedarburg, Wis.

Patty Clapper, Cedarburg’s yearbook adviser, is also in charge of the school’s Community Service Program. Each year, the program organizes a Jam for Charity – a singing, battle-of-the-bands style event for their students that raises money for a particular charity. After so many schools in the northeast were hit by Sandy, Clapper and her students got the idea to help a school hit by the storm.

“We’ve never gone outside of our community before, but after we started to see some of the devastation, our kids really wanted to do it,” said Clapper.

Clapper found East Rockaway High after seeing an email from a friend in the Cedarburg community who had attended East Rockaway. She quickly learned they were a Walsworth school, like Cedarburg, eventually got a copy of their yearbook and was soon in contact with the school.

Now, this year’s Cedarburg Jam will be raising funds to sponsor East Rockaway’s annual Rock Rivalry, a traditional inter-class competition that the school has held for 76 years. This year’s competition was going to be difficult due to all the equipment that was lost in the flooding.

“We typically don’t just give cash. We like to give tangible items. The kids like to see what they’re donating,” said Clapper. “(East Rockaway) lost everything. So we said, ‘Give us your shopping list.’ And that’s what they’re going to do.”

Evan Blackwell, CJE
Evan Blackwell, CJE

Evan Blackwell, CJE, is a Web Content Specialist for walsworthyearbooks.com and yearbookhelp.com, as well as a regular contributor to Idea File magazine. He's been a writer and editor for Walsworth Yearbooks for the past 13 years, and is the author of the Yearbook Suite's "The Art of the Interview" unit. Prior to joining Walsworth, Blackwell spent five years as an award-winning newspaper and magazine journalist. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Kansas.