ASB to hold day two of Spook-Side Lands

Kyle Vetter and math teacher Zachary Barnes, members of the band Pascal’s Triangle, perform at the Associated Student Body’s Spook-Side lands event hosted during lunch Thursday at Centennial Plaza. The group was formed the weekend before the event when Vetter asked Barnes to perform. Barnes said the community generated from events like Spook-Side lands is gratifying to witness. “I think it’s so singular that Paly has opportunities to do this,” Barnes said. “I think most people are kind of separated and to see everybody mix it up with productive ways to spend your time is really awesome.” (Photo: Annelise Balentine)

With live music, snacks, and Halloween candy, students will gather at Palo Alto High School’s two-day event Spook-Side Lands during lunch today on the Centennial Plaza.

The event, organized by the Associated Student Body, kicked off yesterday with live music from Pascal’s Triangle, a rock band consisting of junior Kyle Vetter, junior Jack Champlin and Paly math teacher Zachary Barnes.

According to Champlin, the band’s music was improvised during the later parts of the performance. 

“We played two songs that we had played before, and admittedly, we did not do a good job with those because we hadn’t practiced and then we just kind of improvised,” Champlin said.

According to Barnes, the band’s ability to think on their feet is what made the performance a fun experience.  

“I think musically, Jack and I didn’t know how this was gonna go actually, so I was surprised,” Barnes said. “The key to playing music is when you know what you’re doing. It’s really fun when you don’t know what you’re doing, which is most of the time.”

Junior Jack Champlin plays guitar during the Associated Student Body’s Spook-Side Lands event hosted during lunch Thursday at Centennial Plaza. According to ASB Social Commissioner Kennedy Do, the idea of Spooks-Side Lands came about by mixing the Halloween theme and previous years’ Quad-Side Lands. “We were about to have a Quad-Side Lands event, but the Quad is under construction right now so we had to alter the event,” Do said. “It was also really close to Halloween so we [ASB] thought it would be fun to combine it with previous years’ Quad-Side Lands.” (Photo: Annelise Balentine)
Champlin and Vetter initially played together for a Teen Arts Council open mic event and were looking for a bass player following ASB’s request for them to play at Spook-Side Lands.

“Kyle and I had performed for a Teen Arts Council open mic with some other people, and it was a really fun experience,” Champlin said. “Because of timing, we never really had time to practice, so we just didn’t sign up. And then ASB kind of asked us to do it, so I was talking with Kyle about it. He was like, ‘maybe we should have a bassist. Mr. Barnes, is bass. What if we asked him?’ kind of as a joke, but then we did and he said yes.” 

Barnes said that although his introduction to the band was rushed, his connection was strong with the other band members.

Kyle and I played last week, I just brought a drum set to my classroom and he wailed on the drums there,” Barnes said. “So that was really cool and I understand his vibe.”

According to ASB senior Secretary Cindy Wang, Spook-Side Lands was inspired by previous years’ Quad-Side Lands.

“We usually have Quad-Side Lands a little earlier in the year,” Wang said. “Because Spirit week was earlier this year, ASB pushed back Quad-Side Lands and decided to have a Halloween-themed Quad-Side Lands called Spook-side Lands.”

Due to the ongoing construction of the Quad, the event had to be moved to a new location, according to Wang. 

“We were originally going to have Spook-side Lands on the Quad, but because of the construction, we felt like there was not enough space for both performers and the audience,” Wang said. “We chose the Centennial Plaza because there is an elevated surface where performers can perform and an open area where students can sit.”

Wang said the event usually spans over the course of two days to give students plenty of time to try out the different activities and watch performances. 

“Last year, we had spread out Quad-Side Lands into two days, and we found that to work better because performers were less rushed and students had more time to grab snacks and picnic blankets.”

Some students, like senior Sophie Tu, are looking forward to enjoying the event and taking a break from school stress.

“I like how ASB is giving us fun events I can look forward to during this stressful year, especially as a senior,” Tu said. 

According to junior Jules Lafargue, events like these are a great way to help students engage with each other. 

“I see a lot of kids really enjoying themselves with performances of any type since it’s a great way to get your mind off of studies once in a while, especially as the school year keeps ramping up and workload isn’t diminishing,” Lafargue said. 

Day two of Spook-Side Lands will take place today during lunch and will consist of a musical performance by Charlie Chen, performances by the Kazoo and Dance club, as well as a senior pumpkin painting event.