‘Anything but a Backpack’ Day showcases spirit


Palo Alto High School students flaunt unconventional items carrying their school supplies today during brunch across the Quad for “Anything but a Backpack” Day. The Spring Spirit Week theme left students with room for creativity as suitcases, grills and garbage cans covered the campus. Best-dressed participant and sophomore Briar Dorogusker, who brought a Santa Claus suit and sack, said she is excited to continue dressing up for the remainder of the week with her class. “I think that we [sophomores] have been doing a great job.” Dorogusker said. “During Fall Spirit Week I was so proud of [our class] and from what I’ve seen for the dress up days, we are having a great turn out. It seems like most sophomores have been doing something to reflect the theme.” (Photo: Celina Lee)

Leena Hussein and Celina Lee

They came in all sorts of ridiculous shapes. One was a 100-pound barbecue. Another brought a rolling composting bin. Sophomore Sapphire Loomis brought her school supplies today in a bird cage, while senior Tommy Doran carried his in a gaming PC case. That’s how Palo Alto High School students rolled today on “Anything but a Backpack” Day during Paly’s first-ever Spring Spirit Week.

Unique and unconventional items were modeled by students across all grades on the Quad’s red carpet ranging from shopping carts, suitcases and grills as a part of today’s theme. Loomis and Doran were selected by Paly staff as “best-dressed” and given free backpacks from the Associated Student Body.

According to Doran, the decision to participate in the best-dressed activity today was last-minute.

“I didn’t participate yesterday, but I realized I just had this gaming PC lying around and it would be a pretty great thing to bring to school,” Doran said. “I’m actually kind of surprised. I thought other people would win, but I think these dress-up days are pretty cool.”

According to ASB Spirit Commissioner Kennedy Do, the inspiration for this year’s Anything but a Backpack Day came from last year’s senior class theme day. 

“The seniors last year had an ‘Anything but a Backpack’ day and there was a lot of good turnout and student participation,” Do said. “This year we thought it would be fun to expand it to all classes considering how well it did last year.” 

Do said ASB wants to encourage further student involvement in Spring Spirit through various prizes for best-dressed winners.

“I think that best-dressed is a great way to promote school spirit and it provides a good incentive to participate more in dress-up days,” Do said. “It’s fun to see your friends walk and the prizes are really good this week like waffle makers, Hydro Flasks, chicken lamps, backpacks and Trader Joe’s snack baskets.”

According to best-dressed participant and sophomore Briar Dorogusker, she welcomes the addition of Spring Spirit.  

“I noticed that while we have a lot of fun during fall Spirit Week, it [school spirit] is a bit empty the rest of the year,” Dorogusker said. “I think that as the years go on, we will get more into Spring Spirit and it can be just as fun as fall [Spirit Week].”

Best-dressed participant and senior Philip Santiago said Spring Spirit is creating more fun and memorable experiences for students this year.

“I think it [Spring Spirit] is fantastic and really community building,” Santiago said.  “I just look around and see such strange things. I’ve seen trash cans, cones, garbage bags, grills. It’s just pretty sick to see what people come up with. I like having another Spirit Week, [and] I just love being spirited, and I think that’s one of the things Paly’s really good at.”

Spring Spirit will continue with tomorrow’s theme being “Pop & Rock,” and an outdoor relay race rally and Quadchella will take place on Thursday during lunch.