The Harrells Christian Academy Beta Club, under the leadership of Ruth Ann Parker, attended the NC Beta Club Convention in Greensboro, Feb. 5-6.
This year’s theme is “Let the Beta Times Roll.” The students worked for months preparing for multiple competitions, and that work paid off as the Crusaders from Harrells brought home eight state awards. This is quite an accomplishment for any school, but especially a small school. Will Huff from Clinton ran for the state office of President, and while he did not win, he enjoyed the experience.
“I had an amazing time and met so many wonderful people,” Huff said. “I would run again if I could. Huff’s campaign skit won first place.
Parker, who is also the State Sponsor-elect, was very optimistic going into the competitions.
“We have such talented students, who put forth the very best they had. I could not be prouder of what these young people accomplished this weekend.”
The group talent competition is full of strong contenders each year, so placing in the top three is a feat. The HCA Beta members presented an anti-bullying campaign full of acting, singing and dancing, which was choreographed by Abbigail Clark from Clinton. The Crusaders walked away with third place, which, unfortunately, does not earn them the opportunity to compete in the national competition but is still a great honor.
Kiley Jones from Clinton had a great deal to live up to this year since her writing skills helped a team of actors win first place at the national competition in Nashville last summer. Charged with writing another skit, she and partner, Tyler Sutton of Clinton began working back in October to come up with another winner. Actors on their team included Catherine Armstrong from Burgaw, Rachel Bland from Harrells, Anna Laurie Carter from Kenansville, Caroline Jones from Kenansville, Joseph Lee from Burgaw, Sabrina Maragelis from Rose Hill, Madison Sauls from Warsaw, Brayden Sutton from Clinton, and Miranda Wells from Rose Hill. The group was successful in winning another first place award, earning them an invitation to compete on the national level in New Orleans this summer.
Also earning a chance to compete on the national level were McKenzie Parks from Wallace. Parks placed second in Science Division II; Brayden Sutton, who placed 2nd in Spelling Division I; Haley Bowles from Kenansville and lead designer for the banner competition won second place; and Joseph Lee from Burgaw placed third in poetry.
Each state often has state-specific competitions that are not eligible for nationals. Short story is one of those competitions. Lucas Thornton from Teachey won first place.
The Beta sponsors and students will now begin the process of preparing for national competition in June.
Parker stated, “We have high hopes for what our students will do once we arrive in New Orleans. The National Convention is full of excitement and energy, and it is always fun to watch our students grow and forge new friendships.”