Last year, officials at Galway Central Schools were uncertain whether they’d be able to afford to have any school sports this year.
This year, school pride in the field and on the court is being celebrated with The Eagle Eye, a glossy 32-page magazine showcasing every varsity sport.
“It was really important to show how significant athletics were to our school,” said Paige Galloway Hammond, co-editor of the magazine with Jessica Demarest. “I couldn’t imagine — if I didn’t play my senior year of soccer, it would be devastating.”
The two Galway Senior High School seniors and four other business interns put together the first issue, for fall sports, with four black-and-white pages dedicated to each sport.
Photos and quotes fill each page, which was a big undertaking for the students, who attended many after-school games this fall.
“I remember thinking, ‘I’ve been to more games and events than I’ve ever been to before,’ ” Demarest said.
The magazine is designed to include more photos for each team than the high school yearbook can.
And a section in back is devoted to seniors, with individual photos of each of the 25 seniors who played fall sports.
“We also wanted to include articles and quotes from the athletes so it could be something they could cherish for a long time,” Galloway Hammond said.
Demarest is interested in publishing, while Galloway Hammond is interested in sports management.
The junior/senior high school’s new principal and athletic director, Brita Donovan, has pushed school spirit this year, the editors said.
The small, rural district has had a tough few years, with staff cuts and discussions during the budget cycle about whether they might have to cut non-mandated programs like sports, chemistry, physics and art.
“Since we are such a small school, a lot of people play sports,” Demarest said.
The interns have learned new skills in producing the magazine.
“We came in mornings before school even started, huddled around the Macs,” Galloway Hammond said.
They’re selling the magazine for $7.50, which is expected to cover the cost of printing 75 copies.
“The object of the magazine wasn’t to make money,” Galloway Hammond said.
The students plan to produce winter and spring editions, too, which will be easier now that they’ve worked out some of the kinks, such as learning to use Adobe InDesign and getting used to Apple computers.
Under the direction of Galloway Hammond and Demarest, interns Mariah Hayes, Aaron Bogdan, Chelsea Cucci and Kelly Phillips are on the magazine’s staff.
They’re all interns for business teacher Mark Swain. Swain also oversees the Eagles Media Center, which is the student news website; The Village Press, the student-run publishing company; and E-Way Cafe, a student store that sells drinks and snacks. All of his classroom ventures are related; his marketing class designed the logo for the student store, and an ad for the store appears in the magazine.
“Their core responsibility is the store,” he said of his business interns. But they can take on other projects too, like The Eagle Eye. In the past two school years, students produced books, one a coffee-table book about Galway and the other a bilingual children’s book.
“It was a great concept,” he said of the sports magazine.