Allison Graham enjoys lunch with her daughter, Allison, during Valley Elementary School's Thanksgiving feast on Nov. 20. (Reporter Photo/Jon Goering)
Allison Graham enjoys lunch with her daughter, Allison, during Valley Elementary School's Thanksgiving feast on Nov. 20. (Reporter Photo/Jon Goering)

Archived Story

VES students, parents give thanks

Published 4:57pm Wednesday, November 20, 2013

By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor

A few months into her first year as Valley Elementary School’s principal, Linda Campanotta said she had much to be thankful for.

“At the schools I have been at in the past, they have never opened the Thanksgiving feast up like this,” Campanotta said as dozens of kindergarteners and their parents queued in the hallway outside the school’s lunchroom on Nov. 20. “We have over 200 people coming through each day (through Nov. 22).

“I am so thankful that we have excellent community support,” Campanotta added. “It keeps getting better and better each day.”

Before enjoying the lunchroom’s Thanksgiving feast, several kindergarteners and their family members reflected on things they are thankful for this year.

“Everybody in my family, even (my dog),” student Juaquim Jimenez said. “And (my sister) Bella and the baby.”

Kindergarten student Jordan Young was preparing to eat with his parents, Amber and Emanuel.

“My siblings, my dog and my family,” Jordan said when asked what he was thankful for.

Allison Graham was enjoying lunch with her daughter, Savannah, who was dressed in Native American attire.

“Being able to eat with my daughter,” Allison Graham said. “This is my first year to come to this.”

Savannah answered immediately when asked what she was thankful for.

“God,” she said.

“Good answer,” her mother added.

Members of the school’s PTO were selling everything from rubber stamps to green and gold shakers on the lunchroom’s stage to raise money for the school.

“Family, my great friends here, a great community and great schools,” PTO member Bridgett Brannon said as she worked the sale with Tiffany Griffin and PTO President Kelly Windham.

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