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Bearcats, Yellowjackets Break Bread Before BOTA

Sherman and Denison Student Council Group PhotoA day before the schools face off in one of the oldest football rivalries in the state, the Student Councils from Sherman High School and Denison High School came together to break bread and mingle during the annual Friendship Luncheon on August 24.

Like Battle of the Ax, the Friendship Luncheon switches hosts every year, and the school hosting the game hosts the Luncheon as well. This year, students gathered inside the SHS gym to celebrate.

“It’s a great way to break the ice between the two schools,” said Amelia Antillon, SHS Student Council sponsor. “This is also a reminder of the bigger mission of what the Student Councils are doing in helping their communities.”

This year is the third luncheon for Senior Kaitlyn Brem, who first attended her sophomore year when she first joined Student Council.

“It’s a good way to ease tensions between schools in this big rivalry,” Brem said. “Though at first it’s a little awkward, it’s a wholesome, friendly time with lots of jokes once everyone relaxes.”

As a 2005 SHS alumna herself, Antillon remembers taking part in the Friendship Luncheon her senior year.

“It was a lot smaller back then. Today we have around 100 students minimum,” Antillon said. “It was definitely a little intimidating at first.”

The two Student Councils play games and enjoy team building activities to break the ice, if they don’t know each other already.

“I know Denison people from church as well as a few friends I’ve made at the other Friendship Luncheons I’ve been to,” Brem said. “This event is a more wholesome experience with the rivalry.”

DHS Student Council sponsor Ashlyn Cowlan said the Friendship Luncheon is a good way to foster camaraderie between the two schools.

“It’s a more peaceful event before our teams take the field, and maybe that can keep things from getting too heated in this old rivalry,” Cowlan said.

Both Student Councils are even competing in their own way through a canned food drive. Each council is racing to raise as many donations as possible for a food pantry in their community.

“This is to maximize the impact we have as volunteers,” Antillon said. “Win or lose, our communities still benefit from our service.”