Perfect imperfections of Athens Drive pep rallies


Photos by Made by Leah Slates through Canva.

Bold blue letters with saying “Athens Drive Pep Rallies” plastered on a vibrant orange perception of sound coming from an orange megaphone on a black background.

The imperfections of each Athens Drive high school pep rally are what make pep rallies memorable. 

Something will go wrong at the Athens Drive pep rally– it always does. Whether it be the music for the dance team going out, the microphone not working, the soundtrack getting mixed up or simple confusion, conversation about the pep rally sparks from the imperfections. 

Each pep rally conducts numerous tests and steps of preparation. The facts seem to be that no matter how ready they are, a turn of events often occurs. This is not for the worse, it inspires problem solving and quick thinking. It inspires lighthearted laughter from the crowd when sudden unexpected music blares out from the scoreboard that filled the gym. It inspires pure awe which is reflected from the immense cheering at the sight of the hyphy entrance. It inspires new interest, starting at the sight of sports and entertainment teams as they presented themselves to the gym and watchers of freshman and sophomore students from the television. Most importantly, it inspires a sense of unity within the student body as they sing the songs that are cut off from performances and give the performers a beat to ride.

“If we’re in the gym, first thing we do is roll the scores table up, then we power it up. We plug into the ports that are there. We go through a series of tests, make sure everything is working fine… We are there an hour beforehand to prepare,” said Christopher Remaley, lead teacher of student council at Athens Drive High School. 

Whenever the music cut off for any of the dance-type teams, each dancer kept going to produce an applause from the crowd of students. 

Speculations and conspiracies about the previous pep rally Dec. 16, 2022 came to be about the idea that the dance team had been sabotaged this time instead of the music cutting out by accident. This rumor started because students heard that the cords to the sound system had been unplugged. While the part about the cords being unplugged was true, someone purposely doing it was false. 

The mechanicals that allow for the pep rally to function are around the big, bulky table on the visitor-side of the gym. Due to the pep rally being at the end of the school day, students brought their bags with them. They ended up placing their items on the mechanics which caused the cords to get pulled out. In the moment, no one in the student council or teacher knew what the problem was as to why the music stopped and the mic was no longer functioning. 

Despite the issue, the dance team kept dancing as they always do, and student leaders of the pep rally used their voices to conduct the show. 

Members of the student council subconsciously bonded as they discussed the imperfections of the most recent pep rally, but having a fun time nonetheless. Talking about what to improve, and how new memories could be made for the next time. 

“I’ve been doing it for 25 years… I’ve never had one that went perfectly, when you rely on technology, something is going to break,” said Remaley.