Chelsea Middle staff face off in Halloween decor contestPublished 2:31pm Thursday, October 31, 2013
By CASSANDRA MICKENS / Associate Editor
CHELSEA — What started as a low-key Halloween decoration contest between Chelsea Middle School staffers ended with trash talk and a year’s worth of bragging rights.
Guidance counselors Kelly Peloquin and Esther Rogers thought it would be fun to wage a spooky decor battle between the guidance office and the administrative office. Little did they know the face off would result in some good-natured bribery and a morale boost.
The guidance office, or the “Winner’s Lounge” as Peloquin calls it, claimed victory Oct. 29 after a staff vote of 26 to 19. The decorations remained on display for Halloween, complete with strobe lights, jack-o-laterns, spiderwebs, and a toy mummy dancing to the tune of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.”
“Esther and I were screaming, ‘We are the champions of the world!’ Then I asked [Principal William Harper] if he wanted me get him some tissues,” said Peloquin, laughing. “He demanded a recount, but there were no hanging chads!”
Harper countered: “Our office is the epicenter of decorative creativity!”
Peloquin said both offices swayed the vote via employee perks, i.e. duty free lunches, Pumpkin Spice Lattes and pizza, paid for personally by Peloquin and Rogers. The contest coincided with Chelsea Middle’s Red Ribbon Week. This year’s theme is “Drugs are Scary.”
“It’s been great for morale,” Rogers said of the contest. “We didn’t think decorating our office would become such a big deal.”
Rogers said the excitement among staff trickled down to students who wanted in on the voting process. Students could get their wish later this year, as talk of a Christmas decoration contest has already begun.