VVHS culinary classes prepared a luau buffet for their guests. Chef Chris Noone stands by as guests admire the coconut cake. Photo by Linda Faas

Virgin Valley High School created a “taste of the islands” as students teamed up with Mesquite Community Education Foundation to present “Tiki Time” on March 20. MCEF President Darlene Nelson welcomed hundreds of guests decked out in Hawaiian shirts and flower leis. A luau-style buffet was prepared by the culinary classes under the caring watch of Master Chef Chris Noone.

The new VVHS ukulele ensemble showed off their tropical flair. Photo by Linda Faas

As the newly formed VVHS ukulele orchestra strummed their best tunes, student chorus members asked the audience to sing along to “Tiny Bubbles,” and other island favorites. Orchestra and choral instructor Marie Palmer has introduced her students to ukuleles this year just to prepare for their “Tiki Time” performance.

A dramatic rendition of “Hawaii 5-0 Theme” was belted out by the VVHS band under the direction of instructor Kendra Graf. The brass and percussion sections were standouts as the flawless band brought the audience to its feet in applause.




VVHS dance team entertained the crowd with a beach ball routine. Photo by Linda Faas

In a rockin’ change of pace, the VVHS dance team showed off their precision skills in a beach-ball routine.  Each year various student groups learn brand new routines, songs, and even new languages to entertain their guests.

This is the third year the student groups have staged a community “spring fling” that raises money for scholarships for the VVHS graduating class. Pep squad and honor society members help sell raffle tickets, athletes and school employees arrange tables and chairs, and dozens of businesses and individuals donate raffle prizes that build the scholarship fund and make the evening a success.

Mesquite Community Education Foundation was formed three years ago for the purpose of raising funds to help VVHS graduates pay for college and trade school. In the process, MCEF has helped introduce the community to the abilities and personalities of our local students. In its first year MCEF raised $8,000, providing eight scholarships for the class of 2017.  Last year those totals rose to $17,000 for seventeen graduates. With increased recognition and overwhelming community generosity, MCEF aims to double that total funding for the Class of 2019.

MCEF plans a “Run for Fund$” 5K fun run on April 6. This event is for kids and adults.

Dr. Theresa Ofori co-chairs the event with Nick Montoya, director of Mesquite Leisure and Recreation Services. All ages are invited to walk or run for “fund$.” Entrants should sign up now at the Mesquite Recreation Center, Chamber of Commerce, Danielle’s, or Senior Center, or at www.activityreg.com to assure that they will receive a race T-shirt. Entry fee for adult runners/walkers is $25, kids’entry is $10, with shirt included. A one mile Kid’s Dash for youngsters up to 11 years old will circle the VVHS track.

The 5k run/walk starts at the VVHS track and winds through adjacent neighborhoods to return to the track for post-race awards and festivities. Entrants can form teams of up to four runners/walkers. All proceeds help out VVHS graduates.  MCEF is a nonprofit 501c3; scholarship donations may be sent to MCEF, P.O. Box 2784, Mesquite NV 89024.