Monarch Madness XXX: A Drive-In Movie Night to Remember

ASB and Student Activities staff reflect on the obstacles they have faced in preparation for Monarch Madness XXX.

March 14, 2021

Complete with suspenseful games and tightly choreographed group dances, Monarch Madness is often dubbed “the best night to be a Monarch” and is the apex of a year of school spirit. This year, however, the COVID-19 pandemic has altered some aspects of Monarch Madness XXX. From new and improved socially distanced games to drive-in movie-making, ASB and the student activities staff have put significant effort into making sure the event would not lose its reputation as a night to remember. 

ASB Media Coordinator Connor Martin attends and oversees Monarch Madness practices on campus.

Due to the added job of having to work with the state and county COVID-19 regulations, ASB began planning in October. The primary challenge was figuring out how the Mitty community could view and participate in Monarch Madness safely while also feeling engaged in the moment. Their initial template for the viewing was similar to the live stream from the Christmas rally in December, but seeing a drive-in movie together gave the ASB members the idea to rent out the West Wind Capitol Drive-In and make Monarch Madness a pre-recorded film instead.

“We didn’t really want to do something like a video in homeroom; that was just not going to be the vibe,” junior Jonathan Cabael, ASB Media Coordinator explains. “We wanted to think of something really unique and creative that could fit the caliber of Monarch Madnesses in previous years.”

However, as soon as they formulated a plan for how students and staff could view Monarch Madness, more obstacles presented themselves, mainly surrounding the financial and labor costs of renting a drive-in movie theater.  

Aside from determining how the event itself would be viewed, another obstacle that had to be overcome was making sure the games and dances could be held without violating COVID-19 guidelines. Mr. Greg Walker, Director of Student Activities, describes the role of the student activities staff as a balancing act between the ideas of ASB, the school administration, and COVID-19 regulations. While not everything the students dreamt up can be implemented, Monarch Madness will be as close as it can be to their expectations. “It’s just a matter of opportunity to do what we can, and it’s one of the driving forces in our department,” Mr. Walker elaborates. 

We wanted to think of something really unique and creative that could fit the caliber of Monarch Madnesses in previous years

— Jonathan Cabael, ASB Media Coordinator

As for the actual games, all events will be held on-campus before the night of the event. ASB media coordinator Connor Martin mentions that there will be a Giant Jenga game and a version of in-person Among Us. These completely new games manage to incorporate aspects of quarantine that we’ve experienced with our family or friends virtually. Another new event that ASB has created this year is “the Nine,” created to replace the traditional representatives’ relay. Connor describes it as a game in which representatives “get nine hours to create a short film based on a theme that ASB assigns them.” This game will show us how creative and ingenious our representatives truly are. Additionally, the ASB media coordinators, Connor and Jonathan, will work together to edit a large Monarch Madness film for the community to view. 

Even though ASB has come up with original games to adapt to the pandemic, there is always a risk due to COVID-19. Thus, Mr. Walker emphasizes that social distancing guidelines have been followed to a T. Games have and will continue to be done in specific time blocks to minimize the number of people in any location at any given time, and gloves and masks have been distributed and utilized as well. There are only three events on campus for the Monarch Madness teams, and everything was planned to limit contact and follow county guidelines. 

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