Arlee Elementary School
Holiday Extravaganza brightens up ye Ole gym
By B.L. Azure
Claus made a surprise appearance at the Arlee Elementary School Holiday
Extravaganza and there were plenty of children with wish lists. (B.L.
ARLEE — The Arlee Elementary School Holiday
Extravaganza, under the direction of music teacher Brandon Ensley,
decked out the old high school gymnasium with plenty of jolly holiday
A couple hundred folks braved the typical Montana
winter weather to listen to the various Christmas carols sang by the
kindergarten through fourth grade students followed by the fifth and
sixth grade bands performing musical renditions of Christmas tunes. The
combined group of fifth and sixth grade musicians beat out more holiday
cheer on percussion instruments.
The first grade vocal chords got a workout singing Christmas carols at
Arlee's Christmas program. (B.L. Azure photo)
The evening began with the kindergarten class’s
rendition of “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.” The youngsters, under the
direction of Salish language teacher Mary Parker, sang some of the
verses in Salish.
Parker did the same with the first graders’
performance of “Jingle Bells”; the second grade’s “Be Happy and Sing”;
and the fourth grade’s “Silent Night.”
language teacher Mary Parker maestros Arlee Elementary School students
singing Christmas carols in Salish. (B.L. Azure photo)
Each of the classes sang other Christmas songs
and all featured pianist Anne Stewart plinking the keys.
The fifth grade band performed musical renditions
of “Jolly Old St. Nick” and “The Twelve Days of Christmas.”
The sixth grade band did “Up On the House Top” and
“Here Comes Santa Clause.”
The fifth and sixth grade percussionists, under
the guidance of Richard Brinkman, beat out the tune “One Horse Sleigh
Ride” on numerous percussion instruments.
The percussion instruments are a big part of the Arlee Elementary
School's Christmas program. (B.L. Azure photo)
Then through an uncanny coincidence Santa Claus
showed up within seconds of the last note of carols. Then the little
human buzz took over as the young ones wrangled in line waiting
anxiously to let Santa know what they want under their Christmas tree.
The big fella gave plenty of nods of approval and
told the little ones he would do his best then pointed them to the
treat locker provided by the BigSam family.
Big eyes were on the big guy in the Santa Claus line. (B.L. Azure photo)
It was a very merry evening and band teacher
Ensley gave a hardy ho, ho, ho way to go special thanks to
piano-accompanist, Anne Stewart; Salish language instructor Mary
Parker; AES principal Lisa Miller; the BigSam family for Santa’s
treats; AES staff; janitorial staff; teacher Sue Carney and, last but
not least, the jolly big guy: Kris Kringle, aka Santa Claus.