Field Day and fall sports


Photo By Stef Wojcik

Team B performs their skit with Beach Boy themed costumes during Field Day.

By Maeve McGuire, Aspen High School

On a typical school day, the sleepy, overworked students of AHS wander the chilly hallways lethargically, wearing the same sweatshirt from the day before and longing to climb back in bed. However, one day every fall breaks this cycle: Field Day. On this day the students skip joyously through the hallways, decked out in their team’s costumes with war paint stained across their cheeks.

Historically the most competitive and spirited day of the school year, Field Day can get pretty aggressive. So, as all activities do, injuries can be expected. In preparation for these consequences, Field Day was switched to a Wednesday and athletes were urged to take extra precautions, Athletic Director Martha Richards explained.

“It’s just being smart. I love the great effort and enthusiasm that goes into Field Day but you have a team that you have to be responsible for as a teammate,” Richards said. “I think it’s really good it was moved to a Wednesday because we don’t typically have games on Wednesdays so it allows us to not impact an actual game day.”

Last year during Field Day, junior Taylor McKie and sophomore Meghann Smiddy both suffered from major concussions. Unfortunately, this prohibited them from playing in their volleyball match that night and the following homecoming activities. McKie, who was a sophomore at the time explained how she hurt herself.  

“We were playing tug of war and the juniors last year were pulling. They did that trick you know where they let go a little bit and pull really hard,” McKie explained. “Well, when they pulled really hard most people were smart and let go of the rope. I, on the other hand, flew with the rope and scorpioned in front of the entire school.”

Although field day ended Smiddy’s freshman volleyball season short, she explains that it was still one of her best memories from freshman year and that her injury was ultimately her fault, as are most of these types of injuries for athletes.

“I was playing soccer and I dove in front of someone to try to save the ball. I was kicked in the head and knocked out. My fault. I kept playing and probably shouldn’t have. My fault. Then we went to the tug of war section. I went head to head with someone and now had a major concussion. I couldn’t play in my volleyball game that exact day. My fault,” Smiddy said. “It’s still super fun because you can make friends in other grades and you’re all just running around having fun playing games. It’s competitive, it’s fun, and you get good food. It’s great.”

Agreeing with this idea, Richards also emphasized Field Day’s role of increasing school spirit and student engagement, especially during Homecoming week. Even though she was unsure of Field Day’s history and specific traditions, Richards emphasized its importance to Aspen High’s Homecoming week.

“The thing I really like about [Field Day] is that everybody seems to be really into it. It’s a lot of school spirit and I think it gets everybody gets fired up on homecoming week in general. I don’t have any negatives about Field Day, I think it’s a great part of homecoming. I think myself, as the Athletic Director, as well as the fall sports coaches would just really like kids to try to make good decisions and try their best to not get hurt,” Richards said.

This story was originally published on The Skier Scribbler on October 30, 2018.