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Canyon High School Celebrates New Buildings, 40th Anniversary

Enthusiasm, patience paid off with modernized campus.


The Cowboys of Canyon High School had something to celebrate Tuesday with both their 40th anniversary and completion of campus modernization. Administrators invited community leaders and some former students to the event, which featured performances by both the Madrigals choral group and the wind ensemble.

A new administration building for Canyon High


After a reception in the library, where yearbooks from the last few decades were on display, guests were ushered into the amphitheater in the center of the campus, behind a brand-new administration building and not too far from a new two-story science building, new food service building and ASB offices.

Rob Gapper and Paul Rivas from the district facilities staff with a new dedication plaque in front of the school


Principal Bob Messina talked about a few tenets of life that have inspired him.

“Life does imitate books you read as a child,” he said. “I remember reading about Tigger in the ‘Winnie the Pooh’ books. He had a lot of energy and was always optimistic, (making an enthusiastic, authentic-sounding Tigger ‘whoo-hoo-hoo-hoo’). Then there was Eeyore, who was kind of down. I see both in the people on this campus and I’m glad there are more Tiggers here.”

A reception in the library gave alumni and staff a chance to reminisce


He addressed the difficult process of modernization and proliferation of acronyms in both the construction and education worlds, saying their use was a cause for reflection on what we really wanted and how we went about getting it.

“Life needs to go with a whole lot more thank yous,” he added, asking the senior class members to stand and be recognized, followed by thanking alumni, parents and staff for their patience and support.


“Change is the only constant in life,” he concluded. “But today, I’m asking you to be the best Tiggers you can be.”

A playful comparison of life in 1968 compared to today was offered by Stephanie Weiss, who was in Canyon’s first graduating class in 1970 and current ASB President Phil Bennett.

Canyon Principal Bob Messina talks about Tiggers


“In 1968, Elvis was an American idol,” Weiss offered, to which Bennett countered, “In 2008, we have 10 American Idols a season.” The exchange continued, with perhaps the most smile-inducing being Weiss recollection of the classic Ford Mustang and Bennett’s pride in the “vintage style” Mustang that “looked a lot like the original.”

Stephanie Weiss, CHS Class of 1970 and Phil Bennett, CHS Class of 2008 talk about change


Paul Rivas, the Hart District’s director of modernization, was recognized for his supervision of the school’s completion and members of the C.W. Driver crew were given bricks from the original administration building, which was torn down three years ago.

“You broke it down, you’re gonna get at least part of it back,” Messina joked as his assistants handed over the dusty artifacts.

Asst. Principal Jan Hayes Rennels shows off a bobble head doll designed for Messina

Buiding supervisors were given bricks from the former administration building.



Canyon High School Celebrates New Buildings, 40th Anniversary

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