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The Torch

The award-winning student news site of Olympic Heights High School

The Torch

The award-winning student news site of Olympic Heights High School

The Torch

A Merrymaking Military Masquerade!

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Every year a ball of gratitude, respect, and a bit of fun is held for the Olympic Heights MCJROTC academy. This is a long held tradition. This year’s coordinator is the lovely senior and Second Lieutenant S-3 Officer, Ana Mendez. Tickets have already gone on sale, and the deadline for buying tickets was extended from March 8th to March 14. Any cadets in the JROTC program are allowed and encouraged to go and are welcomed to bring guests.

The Ball is a fun experience, not just for the cadets. Friends, partners, and any other guests can find themselves enjoying a good time at the event. Tickets start at $60, much cheaper than prom for any seniors or juniors, and the only requirement is being in or attending with a JROTC cadet. That and don’t be late or suffer a cruel fate!

Of course there are rules. The Academy prides itself on respect and amenability, but failure to meet a rule isn’t the end of the world. If called out for breaking a rule, a cadet, or even a guest, may have to do a silly dance or something of an embarrassing nature, but there is also drinking the grog: a disgusting combination of liquids – non-alcoholic, of course.  

“We will have the infamous ‘grog’ for those who break the ball etiquette rules,” Mendez says. The “grog” is punishment for anyone who dares disrespect the rules: improper uniform, chewing gum, lateness, etc. While it may seem scary to drink a vile juice of unknown ingredients, participating friends and other cadets find the grog a much loved tradition for the event. However, guests must be on their toes as rule breaking isn’t the only way to get a shot of grog. 

Some cadets take breaking rules to a different level. Cadet and senior Jackson Miller says, “We sneak contraband into other cadets’ possession.” There’s also the rubber ducks: Anyone who finds a rubber duck under their seat is free to choose someone to drink the grog.

Among the grog are other fun activities including a photo booth, dj, dance floor, and more. The event will take place March 28th at Boca Dunes, starting at 6:00pm. Spots are limited, so those who wish to buy tickets must see one of the sergeants about purchasing as soon as possible. “It’s a fun way to get out and experience an interesting piece of tradition,” Miller mentions.  As a cadet, “Getting to wear our blues uniforms is pretty cool, since we don’t often get to wear them,” Miller explains. 

While the fun activities are an important part of the event, so are its origins. The ball is held yearly because of the Marine Corps birthday, which originated on November 10th, 1775.  Sergeant Carlos Jarquin says, “My favorite part of the ball is getting to see cadets and other students experience some military traditions while also having fun.” The Academy is like a family, so these events and traditions mean a lot to the cadets and sergeants. While the ball is held as a birthday celebration, it is also “a method to share a meal with all the cadets in a formal environment. Traditionally in the military we have these events to allow camaraderie and to let loose from day to day events,” Jarquin shares.

The ball has many meanings, but most importantly it’s meant to be fun. So don’t forget to purchase your tickets and have a good time, without having any grog drinking mishaps.

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  • A

    AvaApr 4, 2024 at 11:34 am

    Sounds like a very fun event!

    Reply
  • A

    ABRAHAM DAVID QUEROApr 2, 2024 at 11:22 am

    wow this is amazing work!

    Reply
  • H

    HayleyApr 1, 2024 at 12:56 pm

    Looks like a lot of work was put into it.

    Reply
  • T

    Tori ScaglioneApr 1, 2024 at 11:45 am

    Wow! This looked incredible!

    Reply
  • J

    Jacob YaciukApr 1, 2024 at 11:39 am

    Very well written, I love it!

    Reply
  • T

    Tabassum ChowdhuryApr 1, 2024 at 11:37 am

    I never knew that this was a tradition, it seems really fun to participate in.

    Reply
  • A

    Ayleen Jessica GalantiniApr 1, 2024 at 11:30 am

    I like this article and learning about the importance of this academy.

    Reply
  • M

    Madison KlaperApr 1, 2024 at 11:28 am

    This is awesome, thank you for sharing!

    Reply
  • S

    SkyApr 1, 2024 at 11:24 am

    this looked like so much fun!

    Reply
  • J

    Jacob YaciukApr 1, 2024 at 11:21 am

    very informative! I love it.

    Reply
  • A

    auryanna floresApr 1, 2024 at 7:47 am

    I love mcjrotc and the ball really shows how much of a family we are and how it brings us all together.

    Reply
  • J

    Jacob UMar 28, 2024 at 11:57 am

    Sounds cool! Also, a great article!

    Reply
  • A

    Angelina MagnayeMar 28, 2024 at 11:53 am

    Very interesting! I’ve never heard the term grog before.

    Reply
  • J

    Julia Andrade XavierMar 28, 2024 at 11:29 am

    The ball seems to be such an interesting tradition!

    Reply
  • S

    SantiagoMar 28, 2024 at 11:28 am

    this is an amazing article!!!!!!

    Reply
  • E

    Ethan TainesMar 28, 2024 at 11:25 am

    This is great and I never knew this much about the ball.

    Reply
  • A

    AriMar 28, 2024 at 11:24 am

    I admire the JROTC students, as well as all of our veterans. Thank you all for your service!!

    Reply
  • A

    alexaMar 28, 2024 at 11:24 am

    Great way to share such a cool event!

    Reply
  • E

    EliteMar 28, 2024 at 11:22 am

    Loved the article. good read!

    Reply
  • H

    HayleyMar 28, 2024 at 11:20 am

    This sound fun.

    Reply
  • S

    SophiaMar 28, 2024 at 11:20 am

    It looks like it’s a lot of fun!

    Reply
  • J

    Jacob YaciukMar 28, 2024 at 11:20 am

    very informative, I love it!

    Reply