A gift-wrapping challenge during the WGSS Winter Holiday Extravaganza saw students cover their peers in holiday gift wrap as quickly as they could. Troy Landreville Black Press

Walnut Grove Secondary Extravaganza a fun fundraiser to cap 2017

School raised funds for local causes including youth homeless shelter

School was in session at Walnut Grove Secondary School (WGSS) on Friday, Dec. 22, the last day before winter break.

But as the arms of the clock stretched past 9 a.m., many of the classrooms were empty and the halls were full of wandering students.

Vice-principal Logan Kitteringham, a WGSS alum, was OK with that. For 65 minutes, students from Grades 8 to 12 were allowed a ‘Christmas flex’ to enjoy the school’s Winter Holiday Extravaganza, which had a dual purpose — a chance for the students to have some fun before Christmas and to raise money by donation for some local causes, including a shelter for homeless youth in the community.

Much of this open house was student driven and fostered student leadership, according to Kitteringham, who noted, “It is the first time we have tried anything like this in our 26-year history.”

In past years, teachers put on a show that included lip-syncing and a flash mob, during an assembly at the end of the school day, before winter break.

The challenge was that WGSS’s main gym could only hold a certain number of students, so only about half of the student body (which is nearly 2,000 kids) stuck around to take in the festivities, Kitteringham said.

“The kids enjoyed that but after a few years, it gets a bit tired and they expect more and more,” Kitteringham said.

This year, WGSS went in a different direction, with stations for the students to visit at their leisure. Highlights included propane fire pits used to cook marshmallows and hotdogs, an eggnog chug and Christmas gift-wrapping challenge, a ’Groves Got Talent contest, SPCA rescue dogs rubbing noses with students, and much more.

Leading up to the Winter Extravaganza, students created two videos to help raise donations for the SPCA and Langley Youth Shelter.

Speaking on behalf of the youth homeless shelter cause was Grade 10 student Caitlin Bush, who together with her peers is raising awareness for the Langley youth homeless shelter and “the youth homeless problem we have in Langley.”

“We (are) hoping to raise awareness to the cause and hopefully supply the shelter with enough donated money too provide youth with a safe, hospitable place that they can use,” Bush said, in an email to The Times.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here


The WGSS Winter Holiday Extravaganza on Dec. 22 allowed students to visit from station to station, enjoying various activities. Troy Landreville Black Press

An RCMP rescue dog was happy to visit with students during the WGSS Winter Holiday Extravaganza at Walnut Grove Secondary on Dec. 22, the last day before the winter break. Troy Landreville Langley Times

Students cooked hotdogs and marshmallows around a propane firepit during the WGSS Winter Holiday Extravaganza on Friday, Dec. 22. Troy Landreville Langley Times

Just Posted

UPDATE: Teen missing since early Monday in Langley has been found

Police released information about a 14-year-old girl who has been found safe

Canada West Golf Championships cancelled due to COVID-19 travel restrictions

UBC, UBC-O, UFV and UVic athletes will not hit the links this year, Kelowna was set to host

What will happen in Langley’s school district when student or staffer tests positive?

The school superintendent lays out protocols based on health expert recommendations

Most Langley students back in class

District update released after the first full week of instruction

SHARE: Feathered friend a reliable weather forecaster

Send us your photo showing how you view Langley, and it could be featured in a future edition

B.C. reports 96 new COVID-19 cases, one hospital outbreak

61 people in hospital as summer ends with election

‘Unprecedented’ coalition demands end to B.C. salmon farms

First Nations, commercial fishermen among group calling for action on Cohen recommendations

Earthquake off coast of Washington recorded at 4.1 magnitude

The quake was recorded at a depth of 10 kilometres

B.C.’s top doctor says she’s received abuse, death threats during COVID-19 response

Henry has become a national figure during her time leading B.C.’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

BC Liberals must change gears from election cynicism, focus on the issues: UBC professors

COVID-19 response and recovery is likely to dominate platforms

B.C. could be without a new leader for multiple weeks after Election Day: officials

More than 20K mail-in voting packages were requested within a day of B.C. election being called

Dozens of Canadian venues to light up red in support of entertainment workers

Local facilities among dozens across Canada to participate in Light Up Live

Most Read