Juniors Sleep Under the Stars


The annual camping trip for juniors was back in person this year when a couple of dozen juniors spent the April 21 sleeping under the stars in Pinnacles National Park.

The juniors enjoyed hiking, swimming, bonfires, and surprisingly, raccoons!

“It was Ashley’s tent that got attacked by raccoons,” said junior Jessica Chavez. “They ate her hot Cheetos.”

“Bro, I was so mad!” said junior Ashley Kaage. “I was trying to munch on my hot Cheetos!”

Aside from the hilarious problem of raccoons during this year’s trip, every night the juniors sat around the campfire and bonded while making s’mores and reflecting on the day they had just spent in nature. They learned the history of Pinnacles National Park, where an ancient volcanic eruption created unusual rock formations. The park often has a spectacular wildflower season in the spring, especially when the winter has been rainy, as it was this year.

The students learned that indigenous people used to harvest useful plant and animal resources in the areas that make up the park today, but no archaeological evidence has been found to suggest a village existed within the park boundaries.

Earlier in April, many of the juniors went on a trip to the east coast to visit colleges. Some of the colleges they visited were Haverford College, Swarthmore College, Temple University and the UPenn in Pennsylvania, St. John’s College and Johns Hopkins University in Maryland, and Howard University in Washington, D.C. They also visited the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C.

“Seeing the history of what African Americans went through was sad,” said Ashley, who also went on the east coast trip. “Everybody was kind of bummed out, but we all enjoyed seeing the history.”