Webster chooses Friendship royalty

The Friendship Court includes seniors Carly Farah, Jazlyn Stanciel, Anna Smothers, DaRisha Heavens, Addie Conway, Libby Pacatte, Cassie Gibbs, Irene Henry, Bryce Jackson, alumni Cory Hawkins-Byrd, Sam Kraus, Marlon Peal, Kevin Killeen, Michael Gulve, Zebulun Bates and Kobi Key.
(Photo by Aerin Johnson)

Brittany Patton and Mikkel Sandberg
Staff Writers

Seniors DaRisha Heavens and Kevin Killeen were crowned king and queen at the 73rd annual Friendship Dance.

Every year eight activities and sports choose outstanding members to be on the court.

“The organizations that play a role in Spirit Week and the Turkey Day game each get a rep on the court. The members of those organizations vote who they would like to have represent them,” Coach Cliff Ice said about how the nominees were chosen.

In Shawn Buchanan Greene’s book “Turkey Day Game Centennial 1907-2007,” Greene relates theWebster-Kirkwood Friendship Dance was established in 1940 to create a better relationship between Webster Groves and Kirkwood High Schools

The origins of the Friendship dance go back to 1938 when two groups of athletes from both Webster and Kirkwood intended to clash at Westborough Country Club but were thwarted by police.

This forced the schools’ principals to respond to this behavior by threatening to cancel the game and the series if there were ever more fighting.

One student thought of another way to settle the problems and help heal the bad relationship between the schools. The 1939-40 Captain of the Kirkwood Pioneers, William T. “Bud” Leonard, who also had attended Webster for seventh, eighth and ninth grades, said at the time that “it was better to be a dancer than a brawler.” This idea was inspired by his relationship with his girlfriend—and later wife—who was a student at the rivals’ school Webster.

“When we choose the nominees,Student Council Members nominate the student. They have to attend a minimum of three meetings. Then we just basically close our eyes and choose,” said Kristin Cole about how Student Council chose Carly Farah and Bryce Jackson for the court.

This year band nominees were Irene Henry and Kobi Key.

Cheerleading nominees were Cassie Gibbs and Marlon Peal.

Dance nominees were Libbi Pacatte and Mike Gulve.

ECHO nominees were Addie Conway and Killeen.

Football nominees were Heavens, Zeb Bates, Anna Smothers and Sam Kraus.

SAA nominees were Jazlyn Stanciel and Westbrook.

STUCO nominees were Jackson and Farah.

“I’m happy,” said Heavens about being queen.

“I’ve been dreaming of this moment for so long. It feels incredible. It feels good to be the king,” said Killeen when asked how he feels.

“I’m really happy to be nominated. Well, more shocked. I think it’s nice how Coach Ice chose me to be king. When someone thinks so highly of you, that they would choose you to not only represent them and the sport but also the school, it’s an honor. I can’t wait to see who wins. It was just cool to be nominated,” Bates said about the friendship dance.

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