Carver Holiday Party: A Junior Class Tradition

Danielle Nares '21 and Jackson Hart '21

On December 13, the Junior Class continued their annual tradition of throwing a holiday party for the kids at the George Washington Carver Community Center in Norwalk. 

With the goal to “[close] opportunity gaps for all vulnerable children … to ensure they graduate high school on time college – and career-ready,” the Carver Center runs after-school and summer programs that cater to almost 2,500 children in the Norwalk area. Their programs and services culminate in an annual holiday party that takes place at the beginning of every December for their kids. As Ms. Parker-Burgard noted, running the Carver holiday party has long been a tradition of the Junior Class.

According to Ms. Parker-Burgard, “What I love about the Carver Center party is the way everything comes together. Watching our students dance with the younger kids, or paint faces, or do crafts, or whatever is so much fun. It’s high energy and everyone’s happy. It really sets the tone for the season. But most importantly it’s the coming together of the two communities: St. Luke’s and Carver that I really enjoy.” 

One employee of the Carver Center who worked with the refreshments group, Ms. Renee, remarked, “This party is something that the community definitely looks forward to every year. It is also something that makes us feel good about helping people in need or just to make people happy. That is a beautiful part of center here.” 

Logistically, the Junior Class was divided into different groups, each tasked with organizing and synthesizing many different events. With games such as Jenga and Cornhole, face-painting, and arts and crafts, the party attendees were engaged for hours.

Ryan Bradley ‘21 demonstrated leadership with his last-minute decision to take on the role of Santa Claus. “Being Santa was a really rewarding experience at the Carver Center, to see the little kids and how happy they were. What made [the event] special was bringing enjoyment to the kids’ holidays,” he said. 

The Carver Center Party never fails to bring a smile and some holiday cheer to everyone, whether volunteer or attendee.