Switching from observer to reporter

November 10, 2017   ·   0 Comments

By Avery Park

Every single year I have been at Westside Secondary School, Pink Day has been an amazing experience for me, and everyone else at the school.

When I was in grade nine I heard about Pink Day for the first time, and based on my experiences in elementary school, I thought nobody was going to wear pink. Right?


During the whole week, the amount of pink being worn kept getting higher and higher, so I decided to buy a couple pink things, because I never wore pink and didn’t own any.

Luckily, I had a cousin in grade eleven, and she told me that on Friday, Pink Day, I needed to wear as much pink as I possibly could. So I stole my mom’s shirt, put some pink stripes on my face, and wore a bandana. I thought that would be enough.

It was not enough.

I saw people in pink onzies, pink tutus, feather boas, hats, socks, pants, shoes and sunglasses. Anything you can think of that someone could put on their body, somebody had it on. That was a real wake-up call.

The next year, when I was in grade ten, I knew what to expect. I was totally prepared. I was even prepared a full month before Pink Day, because that’s when I started collecting donations to cut 12 inches off my hair.

This was the second time I donated my hair, the first being in grade seven, and I decided this was the perfect time to do it.

It had been three years of me growing my hair, so it was down to my hips. If I cut it now, there would be two and a half years for it to grow for prom, and it would grow a lot for next year’s school picture. Best idea ever!

By Pink Day, I had raised over $300, and was very nervous. I didn’t know what I was going to look like with short hair, and revealing that in front of the whole school was terrifying.

Thankfully, my cousin was right there beside me, and as soon as my short hair fell in front of my face, everyone started screaming something. I only heard one friend of mine in the front row shout, “It looks so good!” That reassured me a lot.

It was a big relief to not have to wash all of that hair any more, I saved a lot on conditioner, and didn’t have to style it as much. As much as I loved my hair, I was happy it was gone, and can’t wait to cut it again.

For grade eleven, the biggest Pink Day Westside has ever had, I didn’t do a whole lot. I dressed up, bought some food, took pictures for the yearbook, and watched everyone do bottle flip competitions and get their legs waxed. It was amazing to experience, and I’m so happy I was there.

This year was a big change.

Instead of sitting in the stands, or patiently waiting for someone to cut my hair, I was right in the action of everything. I mean, right there, I almost got hit in the head by the tug of war rope.

It’s a completely different experience when you’re right there, versus sitting on the bench. I got to talk to people who were participating in events, and run around trying to get a closeup of everyone.

I was just walking around the halls right before the assembly, when I heard a lot of yelling from a group of girls. I tried to follow them, and stuck my head into a few classrooms trying to figure out where they went. That group was Jade Stannard and her team trying to raise $500.

If I wasn’t out looking for something, I never would’ve know they were out doing that, or about other ‘spur of the moment’ events.

Whenever I interviewed someone, I introduced myself as ‘Avery Park from the Orangeville Citizen’ and some people were really surprised to hear that, especially if they already knew me. It’s odd to not be just a student at your own school, but I was Avery Park from the Orangeville Citizen for the day.

Even though I couldn’t participate in the event this year, I think my favourite Pink Day was this year, because I got to go to an event that I love, and cover it for the newspaper. It was the first big event that I got to do, and I was definitely a lot more comfortable there, rather then somewhere I didn’t know anyone.

After taking the pictures and following the assembly, even with all of the chaos, also known as fun, I believe in myself more, and believe that I can pursue this for post-secondary education, and as a career.

It was an amazing opportunity for me to have, and I’m looking forward to the next event as big as this I can go to.



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