On Tuesday March 10th, Mr. Cox and Mr. Bartlett held the first informational meeting to hopefully form the O’Fallon Township High School Outdoors Club. Their idea has been blooming for about a year, and Mr. Cox says, “Once we got back from winter break we went ahead and put forth the effort. Our first meeting was basically to see if there were any students interested. So far, we’ve had pretty good interest levels.”
The main activities the club will partake in are: kayaking/canoeing, rock climbing/rappelling, biking/hiking, paddle boarding, geocaching, and service learning. For equipment, Mr. Cox says “Obviously not every kid has kayaks and stuff like that, or the equipment necessary to do some of the stuff we do, so we’re going to rely on vendors throughout the area, and the Alpine Shop is one of them that has expressed interest.”
For most of the activities, club members will venture to other parts of the state and Missouri. Possible locations include: the pond in front of Milburn to learn basic kayak and canoe skills, Creve Coeur Lake for paddleboarding, Upper Limits, an indoor rock climbing gym in downtown St. Louis, and many more.
Other than simply getting active and enjoying the outdoors, the Outdoors Club has a specific mission statement. ‘The OTHS Outdoors Club promotes interest in the outdoors by providing opportunities to participate in various outdoor activities and to teach our participants to become stewards of the environment. These goals shall be achieved through club meetings, outdoor activities and other educational events and service learning projects.’
Since the meeting, both teachers have been anticipating the board meeting. When it finally occurred, Mr. Cox received an email approval and informed me, “At the March 19th Board Meeting, the first ever OTHS Outdoor Club was approved to be developed. Mr. Bartlett and I couldn’t be more excited. We think this will be a great opportunity for many of our students to explore unique activities and have a platform to give back to OTHS and the O’Fallon Community.”
Mr. Cox and Mr. Bartlett are of course open to any new suggestions or ideas. Stop by room 414 if you have further questions or would like to join. You can also text @othsoc to 810-10 for text updates on the club.