WHS Best Buddies Hosts Annual Halloween Dance

Students pose for a photo at the Best Buddies Halloween Dance.

Photo/ Greg Tsougas

Students pose for a photo at the Best Buddies Halloween Dance.

The Walpole High School Best Buddies club hosted their sixth annual Halloween Dance on Oct. 25. Students arrived to the event in costume and participated in various contests, games and dancing activities. Kerry Donlan, a faculty member at WHS, has advised Best Buddies for six years. The Best Buddies club aims to create friendships between students of all abilities at WHS. The Halloween Dance is the club’s first social event for each school year. The Best Buddies Friendship walk is held in September and the Special Olympics Bocce Tournament later in the year. Additionally, WHS Best Buddies President Evelyn Abbott, Vice President Brendan Mahoney and special education teacher Kellie Robinson assist Donlan in hosting the dance each year. 

“This is one of the favorite events that we do each year and I really do think the Halloween Dance has become a tradition that students at Walpole High love,” Robinson said.

The Best Buddies club has formed friendships between students of all abilities at WHS. The dance and various Best Buddies events during the school year provide special needs students a gateway to form friendships with students they typically would not. 

“I think it helps students who have less social connections out of school to spend more time with their peers at Walpole High. A lot of friendships have been formed as a result of Best Buddies,” Robinson said. 

On the night of the dance, students dressed as their favorite fictional characters, actors, athletes and more. They danced to requested songs, snacked on candy and pizza and participated in a ring toss and toilet paper wrapping contest. Some students were even presented with award certificates for various titles: best costume, best group costume, and costume that most reflects personality. 

“Overall, I think the dance creates an inclusive environment for everyone that comes to it. For me, it is something fun to look forward to in the month of October,” Mahoney said. 

Even some students from different towns loved the dance and the energy exuded by the students there. 

“I loved the dance and all the costumes. They were pretty ornate and detailed. I don’t go to Walpole High, but I enjoyed the Halloween Dance very much,” Norwood High School junior Renee Babinot said. 

Attendees enjoyed watching new bonds sprout between students and buddies at the dance.

“It was really fun to see everyone come together and bond with each other through all of the dance’s activities,” junior Skyla Nigro said. 

For the rest of the school year, the Best Buddies club will be hosting a holiday movie night where students will watch a film in the auditorium and snack on decorated cookies. In March, the club will hold their spring formal at Conrad’s Restaurant where students will dress formally and enjoy a lunch together. As for the Halloween Dance, the Best Buddies club will continue to host it for years to come at WHS.