This year’s Botha Christmas Concert was short but very sweet, as the students performed traditional Christmas carols that got the entire audience involved.
The Thursday, Dec. 15 evening concert took place at the Botha Community Hall, as the school gymnasium was too small to play host to the families and friends of the 65 students taking part in the performance.
“We went with traditional Christmas carols this year, rather than cutting-edge, newer Christmas songs,” Principal Mike Flieger said. “We had lots and lots of positive feedback from people about that, as they knew the songs and could sing along.”
Students from grades 5 and 6 also performed a bit of comedy, revealed fascinating Christmas holiday facts, and took part in a skit about the true meaning of Christmas.
“It was about what Christmas is supposed to be,” Flieger explained. “It was about spending time with your families, doing things together and for each other. It’s not about big gifts or wanting things.”
He said that the focus of the skit, on “enjoying the small things in life,” was warmly received by the crowd.
“I am very proud of the students,” Flieger said. “They had fun, they knew the carols, and they were great.”
As is tradition, after the Christmas concert was complete, jolly St. Nick himself, Santa Claus, came to hear last-minute gift requests and hopes, as well as hand out small presents of candy.
The concert and visit with Santa also gives the school a chance to do some fundraising, as every year, parents of students at the school bring in plates of home-baked goodies which are then sold at a bake table.
While final tallies from the bake sale weren’t available, Flieger said he thought the bake sale would bring in about $600 for the school.
The money in turn is used on things not covered by Alberta Education.
“The money goes to the school for a variety of things,” Flieger said. “It goes to the student council, to covering costs of field trips, and other recreation activities.”
This year, some students in Grade 6 spent their recreation time making sturdy, safe and durable toys for dogs, and were also selling them at the concert and bake sale.
“They probably raised about $100,” Flieger said.
The sale of the toys was a fundraiser organized by the involved students, with the profits going to the Animal Haven Rescue League.