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Ava High School Echo

High School News at Its Best!

FCCLA Conference 2014


By: Meliesa Swearengin


Students from Ava High School attended the 2014-2015 Missouri Family, Career and Community Leaders of America Fall Leadership Conference, October 12-13, at Tan-Tar-A, Osage Beach. More than 1,100 FCCLA members, advisors, and chaperones attended the conference. The following Ava students attended the conference: Leighann Johnson, Ann Morris, Sara Richardson, Meliesa Swearengin, Amber Isaac,  Nate Lawrence, Jacob Nichols, Tyler Danley, Cheyanne Lambert, Lucas Weddle,Tapanga Garfit, and Katty Christansen. Local chapter advisor LeighAnn Tomlinson also attended.

FCCLA students were able to choose from a variety of different sessions. Sunday sessions included trainings on professionalism, networking, fundraising, careers, and communication. Monday sessions included training for new members, chapter officers, regional officers, and general leadership training. All training were performed by professional speakers from TRI Leadership Resources. Members are inspired to help others and be positive leaders. Ava High School student Ann Morris said,” Tan-Tar-A was a positive influence upon all of us that went. The meetings were very inspirational. The speakers were strong and talked about how we could be better leaders.”

Family, Career, Community Leaders of America is unique young youth organizations because its programs are planned and run by members. It is the only Career and Technical Student Organization with the family as its central focus. Participation in FCCLA programs and activities helps members become strong leaders in their families, careers, and communities.

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Echo Staff Goes to The Herald Office!

By: Scotlyn Canape


You may have seen the Ava Echo staff furiously writing to get their stories done by the deadline, but it isn’t all work and no play with them! The Ava Echo staff recently went on a field trip to the Douglas County Herald Office to gain writing skills and photography tips to improve their printed newspaper.

When first arriving at the Douglas County Herald Office, the staff was ushered into a room where they learned how to dress up their website. When completing a story for the Ava Echo Newspaper Printed Edition, the students also post their stories on their website, . The website is now up and running for you to read every story that has been posted! Along with the website information that was given, Keith Moore told the Ava Echo staff how to write lead-ins, prepare a good story, and the proper time to write stories.

Following the educational field trip, the staff went to a late lunch at True Brew! They enjoyed warm coffee and great food before venturing back into the cold for some pictures. They then headed back to school to talk about what they learned and to plan their next great adventure!

Thank you to the Douglas County Herald Office for teaching the Ava Echo staff!


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A Winning Season!

By: Scotlyn Canape


The Ava Pride Band had a very “dead” show this season, but in reality, it was anything but dead. Along with many accomplishments here at home, the Ava Pride Band brought home many trophies this year for their school to be proud of! Their show “Pandemic” was a hit everywhere they went and had people dying to see more!

The Ava Pride Band traveled to Ozark for their first competition of the season, Pride of the Ozarks. There, not only did they suffer from their “disease” but from the heat as well! Yet, in the midst of the sweat and warm temperatures, they placed 1st in their class! They then proceeded on to a Finals Exhibition Performance where they got to perform their show once again!

During their second competition in Springfield, they made history by, yet again, placing 1st in their class at the Valhalla Marching Festival! Never before has the Ava Pride Band earned 1st place twice in one season! Before moving on to the Finals Competition, they cheered, laughed, and thanked each other for a job well done! Yet they were up for a tough fight, as they were competing against much bigger bands. But that didn’t stop them as they played their hearts out and completed an even better performance than the first, earning them 11th place in the Finals Competition.

After having two winning Saturdays, the Ava Pride Band geared up for their toughest competition yet in Springfield at the Missouri State University Campus at the Ozarko Marching Festival! In their third competition, they were competing against much bigger bands, as this competition was based on school size and not band size. They pulled ahead yet again as they placed 3rd in their class, beating bigger schools! They were shocked to find out that they were moving on to the Finals Competition, as the Ava Pride Band had never made it into Finals here before! After competing in Finals Competition they felt pretty solid about their performance, and were they right! They placed 10th in Finals earning themselves another trophy to bring home!

On the last competition of their winning season, they made the long trip to Reeds Spring and competed in the biggest class yet! They went up against bands much bigger than them, but they pulled ahead yet again and placed third in their class! They then headed to Finals for the last time, which yet again put the band down in history, as they have never been to Finals at every competition before! They performed their best time yet and placed 5th in their class!

Congratulations to all Ava Pride Band members on their successful season!


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A New Face in the Office!

By: Scotlyn Canape

As you all may know, there is a new face in the office, as Mrs. Wright has left to start a new chapter in her life. Although we love Mrs. Wright and we did not want her to leave, we wish her the best of luck! Mrs. Wright left us with these parting words, “I will never forget my time here at Ava High School. Everyone here is dear to my heart, and I have many memories that I will always keep close. I will miss everyone here.”

The office secretary for Ava High School is responsible for many tasks such as updating every student’s profile and managing the upkeep of the office. “Every secretary must be able to multi-task. You cannot survive here if you cannot multi-task.” said Mrs. Wright.

There are other certain qualities that a secretary must have as well! “They must be responsible, trustworthy, kind, and have a sense of humor,” said Mrs. Nash. Yet, all joking aside, the new secretary is all of those and more!

Mrs. Miller attended and graduated high school here at Ava, and is most excited to meet everybody and get to know all of the students and staff! Good luck to Mrs. Miller in her lasting career here!

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Basketball Season of 2014-2015

DSC_0080By: Scotlyn Canape

Here is the list for upcoming home games and events for the Basketball Season of 2014 so you can get out there and support your Ava Bears!


High School Boys Basketball

December 19: Reeds Spring (9th/JV/5:00): Home

January 9: Mansfield (Hoopcoming): Home

January 13: Conway: Home

January 20 Marion C. Early (9th/JV/V 5:00): Home

February 3: Houston: Home

February 6: Salem (9th/JV/V 5:00): Home

February 10: Cabool (Sr. Night): Home


High School Girls Basketball

December 15: Hartville: Home

January 8: Neosho: Home

January 12: Houston: Home

January 15: Salem: Home

January 17: Licking: Home

January 22: Conway: Home

February 2: Cabool: Home

February 9: Norwood (Sr. Night): Home

Support our basketball teams by attending their action filled games!!!

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Renaissance Assembly

By: Tanner Lewis

Twice a year Ava High School celebrates academic achievement in the Renaissance Assembly. This assembly awards students for scoring well on the End-of-Course Exams, having good attendance, and keeping up their grade point averages. It is a great time to see how well you did the previous school year and to improve upon it in the coming semester. This is also the time that the Triple A Award is presented  for having exemplary attendance, grades, and behavior. The Renaissance Assembly will be held at 2:15 P.M. on Tuesday September 30th. Make sure to be there so you can discover your past year’s achievements and try to improve upon them. This is a great time to start the year off strong!


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AHS Cross Country

By: Kim Copeland

The AHS Cross Country team for 2014 is a solid team who knows how to get things done and finish beyond any expectations placed upon them.  Practices are many and relentless.  Thanks to these difficult workouts, the team only becomes stronger and faster.  Even though some think they may not make it to another day, they do, and the benefits and improvements are easy to see.

The first meet for the cross country team was at Strafford on the 30th of August.  Many of the runners had improved their times from last year and the summer by a considerable amount at this meet.  Two of the girls and a few of the boys on both junior varsity and varsity teams received medals for their exceptional times on the run.

Saturday, September 6, the team travelled to Kickapoo.  Despite the wind, rain, and cold  the runners did well.  The team members who medaled are as follows: Caleb Stillings, Logan Sicilia, Bailey Ray, Darcy Ray, and Megan Cooper.

The varsity girls won the meet Thursday! September 11 was the day the cross country team went to Willow Springs and came back victorious.  Caleb Stillings, Logan Sicilia, Cole Atnip, Bailey Ray, Kim Copeland, Megan Cooper, and Darcy Ray all received medals for the great times on their runs.

Be sure to congratulate all the runners on their hard work this season and wish them luck on upcoming events.  They all work so hard to make themselves and, ultimately, the team better than ever before.

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Poetry Pocket!

Waiting For Him

The wind blows weak

The moon glows bright

The wind chimes sing silently tonight

The stars are shining down on me


No one knows I am waiting for he

He who has shining crystal blue eyes

He whom’s smile gets me hypnotized

He who listens to whatever I say

He who comes from far away

He who’ll share his secrets and fears

He who’ll wipe away all my tears

He who I’ll be his one and only

He who’ll keep me from being lonely

He who’ll keep me away from fright

He who wont flee or take flight

He who’ll show me everything’s alright

And this is why I’m waiting here tonight

By: Kelsy Renea Schroeder


Great Flight

She had always loved,

Swinging in the breeze.

A quaint little wooden swing,

Just hanging in the trees.

Such great heights were reached;

Her feet kicking in the air.

The sun playing upon her skin,

The wind dancing in her hair.

Days were spent full of glee,

Upon her little seat.

Years came and went,

Cold winters and summer heat.

She would always return there,

To her throne in the shade.

All her problems would disappear,

With past memories she had made.

One day she came home,

A particular hole in her heart.

She ran to her swing,

Ready for the healing to start.

Low and behold,

She sat down on her seat.

A few seconds later,

She was peering up at her feet.

Pointed to the sky,

Extending far and beyond.

The sun met the hills,

The rays showing their bond.

A few deep breaths,

She felt calm and collected.

Her swing gave her confidence,

Her fears now neglected.

Another day,

She strode away from her chair.

Knowing her place,

Would always be there.

By: Harlie Gunter



Want the Ava Echo to publish your poem?

Submit your poem to or to!

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Poetry Pocket!

​The Parts of Humans

That Science Can’t Explain

By: Lacey Roop

There are parts of humans that science can’t explain.

We know the mechanics of organs and which way the blood flows.

We know the effects of smoking and typical reactions to taste buds.

A scientist likes to think that in time he will know everything.

The problem with knowing everything

is that we often forget what is worth remembering.

The doctor sits me on a table and asks me to stick out my tongue.

I do.

I ask him if he sees the paintings I carry in the back of my throat.

He laughs as if I’m telling a joke,

I’m not.

I’ve got Basquiat, Schiele, Van Gogh, and Da Vinci

so when I laugh, I taste brushstrokes.

I ask him if he can stick out his tongue

so I can see what he has trapped inside of him.

He hesitates a little then he does and I see a man who

struggles for acceptance and chokes on the word


We’ve got robots that dismantle bombs so soldiers

can still pull triggers with their finger.

We’ve got a blueprint of a hotel that will be located

on the moon in 2047.

We’ve got microchips small enough to be slipped inside of hair follicles

yet we still have a hard time saying words like please and thank-you

and offering our hands to help strangers.

The psychiatrist ask me what I am feeling

so she can prescribe me a pill

to take that feeling away

as if that will solve something.

I sit there silent hoping not to interfere with

the tambourines and trumpets being played in my head.

She stares in my eyes and I hope that she can see my insides dancing

but I can tell by the sigh in her face that she hasn’t danced in a long, long time.

This is what we are creating.

A world where the living and breathing

are depending on inanimate objects that only move

because they have buttons and batteries

when we have hearts.

I go to school to make sense of this to find the formula that will save us

when my professor instructs me to lift my head from my desk and quit


I tell him,

I’m not sleeping I’m dreaming—

There’s a difference.

I ask him if he dreams and he tells me that there isn’t enough time for that

when we have work to do.

So I take out my pen and paper and I draw him what I dream;

it is people who sleep in rainclouds, pass out more smiles than business cards,

and find beauty in the broken things.

It is people who can speak every language so we can better understand each


while he continues his lecture about the greatest inventions of the 21st century.

All the students in the class speak excitedly about

iPhones, satellite radios, and plasma screen TVs

that can help us see things more clearly

when this world that we are living in seems more foreign to me

than Pluto’s moons or the idea of being a queen.

With every great advancement we make it seems like

we are taking something more important back.

Like we are trying to prove to ourselves that we are smarter

than monkeys and apes because we can build skyscrapers and send rockets to


To each his own seems to be our motto

and since this is the case

I wish the aliens would come attack us today.

Because only then would we unite as one world,

instead of being separated by our own

governments, prejudices, religions, and races.

And only then would we may be able to figure out

The parts of humans that science can’t explain.


A big thank you to Lacey Roop for letting the Ava Echo share her poem!

Find more by her at


Want the Ava Echo to publish your poem?

Submit your work to or to room during 5th period!

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In the Library!

By: Tina Haden


When most people think, “library” they think: books, lots and lots of books; that’s it. I mean after all, you go to the library to get books, right? While it’s true that you can find just about any book you could possibly think of there, the library is not only limited to books. Here at AHS, there are many things to do in the library.

Do you ever have those days when you have too much homework and far too little class time to do it? Let’s say you have quite the busy home life too, so the only time you can finish up that work is on the bus ride to school the morning it’s due when you’re in such a hurry to get it done that you miss a problem or two. AHS Library has your back! It is open before school at 7am and after school until 6:15pm for your convenience. Need a research paper done? Of course there are plenty of non-fiction books for your use, but what if spending hours flipping through the pages of a book to find the information you need isn’t your style? The computers in the library are there for you to use as well.

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