— Approximately 200 Rock Springs High School students filled the hall in front of the administration office to express their support for their teachers on On Feb. 26, 2001. Students said they were worried about their education, their future and not having qualified teachers because of low pay raises.

Their protest, however, was short lived when they were told if they did not return to class, they could face suspension. Students claimed they were denied their right to organize and protest and wanted to stand up for their teachers by assembling.

A Joint Conference Committee had been named to work out differences between the House and Senate versions of suggested funding levels for education. Their suggestions would go to both chambers of the Legislature, but even if it passed, it was expected to be vetoed by Gov. Jim Geringer.

— Students in Western Wyoming Community College’s Department of Dance received special training from visiting dance artists during the 2000-2001 academic year.

Brent Schneider was the fourth guest artist when he visited with and trained the local dancers in February. Schneider choreographed numbers for a performance by the students.

Schneider praised Western’s dance students, dance program and Assistant Professor of Dance Deirdre MacDonald for their honest and fresh approach to dance.


— Western Wyoming Community’s department of theater and dance presented “A Musical Mark Twain” on March 1-2 and 7-8, 2001 in the college’s theater. The production followed Twain’s life and writings. Scenes were taken from his novels and acted out by the versatile singing, dancing and acting ensemble. The music was lively and included old-time favorites such as “Do Lord” and “Rock-a-my-Soul,” in an old-fashioned minstrel show.

Singers were accompanied by guitar, banjo, washtub bass and harmonica. The show also included a rollicking salon dance and Salvation Army that sang “Away with Rum.”

The cast also performed the musical for fourth- through sixth-grade students in Sweetwater County School District No. 1. Students were bused to the college’s theater to watch the production.

— The Harlem Legends Basketball Entertainers team participated in an exhibition game against the Rock Springs High School alumni team, known as the Spartans, on Feb. 27, 1991 in the high school gymnasium. The game benefited Tiger athletics.

The Harlem Legends were a part of the Michael Douglas Youth Foundation. Players were professional athletes such as former players of the Harlem Globetrotters, NBA, and NFL and past Olympians.

Spartan team members included Rock Springs Mayor Paul Oblock.


— The White Mountain Junior High School Drama Department performed “The Shame of Tombstone” or “Dirty Work at the Lucky Cuss” by Tim Kelly on Feb. 26-27, 1981, in the East Junior High School auditorium. Students performed the melodrama under the direction of Brenda Ostendorff with accompaniment by Bernadine Craft. Following an intermission, 12 dancers performed an old ballad and a can-can routine from the musical “Can-Can.”

The story centered on the action of villainous Judge Mortimer Harshly, portrayed by Brad Russell, who was busy pursuing the holdings of wealthy Amanda Goodsort, a beautiful young widow, portrayed by Renae Johnson. The moral of the play was that crime does not pay, at least it does not pay all of the time.

In addition to the two public performances, the actors performed the show for three elementary schools.

— The Overland Stage Company performed on March 3, 1981, in the Rock Springs High School auditorium. The acting company, which was incorporated in Saratoga, was comprised of founder and artistic director Charles Wilcox, Shirley Grubb and Marilyn Hazel. Wilcox had been in theater touring companies in the Rocky Mountain Region for more than 15 years.

The 1981 spring tour included “The Girl I Left Behind Me,” which presented an insight into Gen. George Armstrong Custer’s love of the West; “Letters Home,” which took a look at the special breed of women who came to the West; and “Demeter Mourning,” which explored the A\ancient Greek story of Demeter and her daughters.

Compiled by Connie Wilcox-Timar. If you have information for the column or would like to contact her, send an email to cwilcox@rocketminer.com.

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