The School Newspaper of West High School

West Signals

The School Newspaper of West High School

West Signals

The School Newspaper of West High School

West Signals

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The National Honor Society provides help in many AP exams. Tutors were assigned to one subject to improve their tutees experience, providing advice based on previous experience in each class. “I recommend coming to these AP cram sessions because you can receive help from students who have previously and recently taken the test,” NHS board member Katie Ho (12) explained.
Time to Cram!
Katelyn Baba, Staff Writer • May 9, 2024
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Ghosts and Ghouls: The Annual Haunted House

On October 27, 2023, West High’s Dance Department hosted their annual Haunted House. With a line of eager customers a mile long, the night was undoubtedly a success. As students exited the Haunted House with jittery movements and adrenaline-high smiles, more rushed in to take their place.
Art/Photo by Nandini Singh
On October 27, 2023, West High’s Dance Department hosted their annual Haunted House. With a line of eager customers a mile long, the night was undoubtedly a success. As students exited the Haunted House with jittery movements and adrenaline-high smiles, more rushed in to take their place.

   Flashing lights, blood-curdling screams, and the promise of a good scare filled the Friday night air at West High on October 27. As middle and high school students waited outside the Dance Department’s annual Haunted House in anticipation, ominous sounds from within only heightened the lovely mix of excitement and fear rushing through students’ veins as they entered those black curtains for the first time. Even from far away, the mile-long line was impossible to miss. 

   In order to make this year’s Haunted House a success, the Dance Department put a month of preparation and meticulous planning into action. All three dance classes — Beginning, Intermediate, and Advanced Dance — came together to put the night on. Pike Steck (12), one of the Advanced Dance students, explained, “We actually started talking about the Haunted House about the beginning of October or end of September to start getting ideas and to start meeting with people to talk, because you need a lot of time to prep.”

   At the beginning of October, dancers brainstormed what kind of rooms they’d like to design as well as which costumes, decorations, and dancers would be acting in each room. Steck explained, however, that opening day is when the real crunch work begins, with nearly all of the decorating being done that day in mere hours.   

   In addition, this year’s Haunted House was substantially different from previous years: With a now-empty next-door classroom, the Haunted House was able to expand considerably. Ms. Vorhis, the Dance instructor, remarked, “This year it’s definitely different, we’ve added at least four [additional] areas this year.” Steck also noted that the expansion was exciting, as it gave dancers the freedom to create four entirely new rooms. 

   The Dance Department’s annual Haunted House also serves as an important fundraiser, creating both a fun opportunity for the dancers to do something new and a compelling way to get donations through ticket sales. 

   If you didn’t attend Friday night’s Haunted House, you sorely missed out. The minute you stepped through those curtains, you were no longer at West High, walking through the Dance room. You were immediately absorbed into an entirely new world the Dance Department created in their very own classroom. Each room was spectacularly spooky in its own right, from fake bodies hanging in trash bags to a room with walls spattered in fake blood to maniacal laughter ringing in your ears. 

   Sasha Rogala (12), one of the Haunted House’s many satisfied customers, recalled, “My favorite room was either the surgery room or the hanging bodies room. When I saw people under the tarps, I was nervous that they’d get up and jump out.” Rogala also added that she found many of the dancers’ performances authentic and that the atmosphere was one to remember: “The noises that were coming out of the Haunted House while I waited in line were particularly effective at freaking me out ahead of time” she joked. 

   If you missed the Dance Department’s Haunted House this year, be sure to add it to your bucket list for next year’s spooky season — you don’t want to miss it!

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About the Contributor
Alexandra Arnold
Alexandra Arnold, Staff Writer
Alex Arnold is a senior at West High School and excited to spend her first year on Signals as a staff writer. She hopes to capture the unique experiences around West through her words, and play a part in sharing them with others. An avid reader and lover of any form of caffeine, Alex loves to visit art museums and meet new kinds of people whenever she can!