Farewell to the Spud


Kelsey Horton, Senior Editor

Looking back on these past twelve years, it is easy for me to say that I am proud of the person that I have become. In these past few years at Alliance High School, I have set and achieved goals, learned lessons, suffered hard losses and grown into the person that I am today. 

After coming up from St. Agnes, I knew very few people and I tried to keep to myself. At the beginning of my freshman year I lost my best friend, my grandma. For a while, I was in a “slump” but a new group of friends helped me through it. My favorite memories were homecoming week and just being able to get to know new people. I learned that writing was something that helped me express the things that I did not think I would be able to put into words, that was when I was encouraged to write for the school newspaper, the Spud. Unfortunately Journalism would not fit into my schedule during my sophomore year, but I was still encouraged to continue writing. 

At the beginning of my sophomore year, I was becoming more confident in myself. I had to adjust to being the only kid at home, after my brother left for college but trips to see my brother were always something to look forward to. Homecoming week continued to be a week that I looked forward to, and I loved the school spirit that was shown. I was nominated for Homecoming Royalty, I participated in the Lip-sync battle and made it into the finals for mini-olympics. 

My junior year was definitely the craziest year of high school for me- thanks to COVID. Deciding to join the Spud my junior year was one of the greatest decisions I made throughout high school. At the time the Spud consisted of five seniors, two foreign exchange students, three sophomores and myself. At the time, it seemed like a really odd pairing of people but as the year went on, the friendships I made during class became some of my favorites. In the Spud, I have made some bonds that will last a lifetime and strengthened bonds with older friends. Going to the fall conference in Lincoln was an unmatched memory. Shelbee Burke, Lara Reiger, Violeta Roca and I all shared a room over the weekend. Staying up until midnight with them to be the first to tell Lara happy birthday is still one of my favorite memories from that year. When the state competition rolled around, we were ecstatic to find out that our In-Depth Story qualified for state. Despite the state competition being cancelled, it was still amazing to see that we had placed fifth in the state. It was not the end to the year that I wanted, but it helped me appreciate the little things in life. Journalism taught me to be a better writer, and looking back now, I do not think I would have passed college English without the skills I learned in this class.

At the beginning of this year, I was most excited to get back into Journalism. I was named the Senior Editor and I was so happy to have Shelbee and Morgan at my side as editors as well. After not being able to see people very often throughout the summer, it was great to be able to get back into the groove of coming to school. The Spud this year brought me closer to the newer members of the Spud, especially Brooklyn and Karly. Unfortunately, we were not able to go to any conferences in the fall, but we still made the best out of what we had. On the last day of the first semester, we had a huge pizza party with hot chocolate, donuts and candy. That day will go down as one of my favorite high school memories. After submitting stories to state and waiting anxiously for about a month, I found out that I qualified in both Editorial Writing and Editorial Cartooning. This came as a shock to me because I had only ever done one cartoon before. At the state competition, COVID edition, we had to wait until the end of the week to recieve results. I was on my way to a tennis dual when the results came in, I placed second in Cartooning and fourth in Writing. I was so shocked that I had just become a State Runner-Up in something I had never done before. This is something that I never could have imagined myself doing if I never would have been encouraged to try something new and join the Spud.

The Spud has helped me come out of my shell more and it is hard for me to believe that this is the last story that I will be writing for it. These past two years have given me some of the best experiences in my life and I will never forget them. I would like to thank Vice Principal Digmann for encouraging me to take this class my sophomore year and Mrs. Ramos for continuing to push me throughout this year. To Shelbee, Brooklyn and Karly, thank you all for always being the reason I looked forward to eighth period, the countless TikToks, snack runs, trips to Seebohm’s room and “Spudlight” adventures. So thank you, AHS The Spud, for giving me the privilege to write for you the last two years, I can not believe that it is over. So for now, this is Kelsey Horton, Senior Editor, signing off for the last time.