Holley Students Display Talent

Naomi Huff, Brylee Hegge and Elise Strong perform “Step Up and Dance,” a friendship song. Photos by Sarah Brown

Jamboree Festival Director Robert Shamek was happy to be invited as a judge for the Holley Elementary School Talent Show, and he noted the musical acts were particularly impressive.

“A couple of those girls are pretty phenomenal,” he said.

Principal Josh Dargis looks over a selection of handmade pots by sixth-graders while Skylar Hanson, Renae Renek and Aubree Hegge try to sell him one. Not shown in the photo is Raylene Allison.

Holley’s Parent Teacher Committee put on their biggest fundraiser of the year on May 4, featuring a variety of ways to raise money, accompanied by a talent show for entertainment. Through plant sales, a taco bar, sales of clay planters made by sixth-graders, and a raffle, the PTC raised money that will help fund needs for the school.

“We use the money to pay for field trips, teacher supplies, playground equipment, technology stuff, and basically extra stuff that our budget doesn’t cover,” Secretary Ann Marie Marble said.

This year, she noted, the teachers are “going crazy” with field trips because they hadn’t been able to do so since the pandemic.

Holley students topped off the evening with a talent show, displaying their skills in music, gymnastics, acting and comedy.

Naomi Huff, Elise Strong and Brylee Hegge sang a friendship song, “Step Up & Dance,” accompanied by a little performance. Annabelle Mengore sang along to Miranda Lambert’s “The House That Built Me,” Ellie Baker sang Benson Boone’s “In the Stars,” Rylan Pearson sang Phil Whickmam’s “This is Amazing Grace,” and  Annalee Hanson sang Alec Benjamin’s “If We Have Each Other.”

Violet Devlin showcased her skills as a grandmotherly comedian and Daisy Devlin played “Dueling Banjos” on her banjo. Evelini Kafoa, McKinley Allison, Rylee Pearson and Raylene Allison showcased their gymnastics skills, while Gracie Mengore, Annalee Hanson, Rylan Pearson and Violet Devlin performed a skit about an invisible bench.

Topping off the evening – and also capturing the talent show award – were sisters Izzy and Tori Rinehart, who recited, “There’s a Daisy on My Toe.”

School District Counselor Stefani Brown holds a microphone as “granny” Annalee Hanson performs a comic skit.

In addition to Shamek, judges included District 55 Superintendent Terry Martin, Holley Church Pastor Kevin Hill and volunteer Annette Reisbick.

“It’s pretty challenging if you don’t have any directions,” Reisbick said about the responsibility with a laugh.

Shamek said he’s judged a bunch of shows, but it was a little hard judging “the little ones,” referring to the raw talent seen that night.

“You gotta give them credit just for being up there, and they were all fantastic,” he said. “Every one of them made me smile.”