Becton´s First Annual Thanksgiving Turkey Volleybowl Tournament


The 2021 Turkey Volleybowl Champions: (Left to Right) Mr. D’Alia, Mr. Jasinski, Mr. Settembrino, Ms. O’Driscoll, Ms. Felton, Mr. Daniello, and Mr. Mendelsohn.

When you think of Thanksgiving festivities, you may think of a nice dinner with friends and family, watching the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, or making pumpkin pies. This year, Becton has added a new Thanksgiving festivity into the mix: the first annual Turkey Volleybowl Tournament. The event was held on November 23, 2021, in the Becton gymnasium. A total of thirteen teams, which included 78 participants, geared up to fight for first place. The participants had to strategically makeup teams, be prompt to submit their participation fee, and choose a creative team name. Then, the physical education department was able to sort everyone into a fair bracket for the tournament. 

One of thirteen competitive teams that played in the tournament!

Miss Polmann, a first-year English teacher and Junior Class Advisor, planned the hit event! As Junior Class Advisor, she is in charge of coming up with and executing different events to raise money for the class. She takes great pride in creating fun and exciting events for the whole school to enjoy. Polmann expresses, ¨I admire and take into great consideration the interests of my students when planning fundraiser events.¨ She also credits previous adviser of the Junior Class, who is the present Student Coordinator, Jessica O’Driscoll, for setting her in the right direction for successful fundraisers. Polmann also sheds light on her wonderful juniors for coming up with and communicating ideas to her. Polmann feels as though she is “working for them” a lot of the time because the students give her the ideas, and she sets them in place to ¨flourish.¨ The idea for the event came from Polmann´s past high school experience. Being a Becton alum, an annual volleyball tournament was commonplace when she was a student. Since her graduation in 2016, the tournament had not taken place in a few years. She decided that it was time to bring this iconic event back to Becton for the students to enjoy! Polmann says that ¨Mr. Settembrino should be credited with the new name for the tournament “The Annual Turkey Volleybowl” and for the awaiting Turkey Trophy that will be passed from winner to winner every year as a new Becton tradition.¨ At the end of the night, the event raised a record-breaking $900 to be put toward the Junior/Senior Prom and its expenses. What a success!

Turkey Volleybowl Turn-Out!

Polmann voices that, ¨the reward was well worth the enjoyment we all felt that night!¨ While letting spectators into the event, multiple veteran teachers told Polmann that it was the biggest turn-out they had seen for a school tournament in years. In fact, the host teachers were letting in spectators for almost 30 minutes! Comments like these made Polmann smile.

The event started promptly at 7 o’clock on the night of November 23, 2021. The teams were ready to play and leave everything they had on the court. The competition was stiff and the pre-game banter amongst the teams was notable. Polmann notes that ¨during the games, the “oos’ and “ahhs” from the crowd were explosive¨, leading to even more excitement in the gymnasium that night. At the end of the night, the team that rose to victory was the Physical Education Team, which was not a surprise to most. The team consisted of Ms. O’Driscoll, Mr. Settembrino, Mr. Daniello, Ms. Felton, Mr. D’Alia, Mr. Jasinski, and Mr. Mendelsohn. 

Cartoon Drawing of the Winners of the Tournament by Becton’s Best: Rocky Esposito!

Overall, the event was such a success that the whole school cannot wait to take part in it next year! Events like these are so important to Polmann because ¨one of the most important parts of a high school experience are the social aspects and building a true sense of community.¨ Polmann mentions that because of the COVID-19 pandemic that has been present since March of 2020, school-wide events and gatherings did not take place as often. She is actively making it ¨a priority to bring back fundraisers that have been on a hiatus.¨ Schoolwide events like such, do an excellent job of bringing all three of the communities, Carlstadt, East Rutherford, and Maywood, together as well as the teachers in ways that exceed just academics. Polmann affirms the idea that ¨Fundraisers or activities like these are what students will remember about their time at Becton, and there were a plethora of memories made at the 2021 Turkey Volleybowl Tournament!¨ We cannot wait to see what Polmann has planned for the rest of the year.

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