CASPER, Wyo. — Casper’s Kelly Walsh High School may be closed due to COVID-19 coronavirus, but the school is still holding their annual “Rodstock” music festival.
The school began to share videos on Monday, March 30, including an opening message from Principal Mike Britt and a performance from language arts teacher Jason Murdock.
“Hey Trojans, I wanted to welcome all of you to Digital Rodstock 2020,” Britt said. “I’m excited that this event can still take place via Facebook or Twitter or Instagram or wherever it is that you are seeing it.”
“Thanks to all those who are putting it together. A huge thanks to all of the students and staff that have submitted their acts, their music, their singing, their talents so that we can share that as Kelly Walsh Trojans all together.”
Britt encouraged students and staff to clap for each other’s performance by filming video of themselves clapping or by pressing “like” buttons on the various digital media platforms.
“Do it just like you were packed into the Kelly Walsh gym cheering for all your friends and all the Trojans that are there that took a risk to be part of Rodstock.”
As explained in this article about the 2019″Rodstock,” the event grew out of retired English teacher Rod Mahaffey’s tradition of playing music in his classroom for students during the spring semester. With students outside of his class coming in to listen to the music, Kelly Walsh then made the event a schoolwide event each spring.
The school generally uses the event as an opportunity to raise money for the Make-a-Wish Foundation.
Britt encouraged students in the introductory video to find other ways to support the community this year. He said that might include considering donations to Make-a-Wish or finding a way to volunteer.
“Let’s pay this forward,” Britt said before letting students know that teachers look forward to seeing students in person again. “We can’t wait to see you back on campus. “
Britt’s opening video and Murdock’s performance are available below: