Looks Bright: Honor roll students walk red carpet

Published 12:13 am Saturday, May 20, 2017

LAPLACE — East St. John High School junior Makayla Perrier did her best impersonation of a movie star.

As she exited her big yellow limousine, Perrier posed for pictures, waved and blew kisses to the crowd and soaked up the applause as she walked up the red carpet to receive her award — a medal, handed to her by a member of the St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff’s Office, and a ditty bag from Marathon Petroleum.

Djareani Washington walks along a long line of cupcakes, eyeing what dessert she wants to enjoy.

Perrier was a star among stars (and a crowd favorite) Thursday as St. John Parish rewarded its best of the best at the annual Honor Roll Celebration.

All public school children who had maintained their honor roll status for three grading periods were invited to attend the event at New Wine Christian Center.

Before ducking inside for the entertainment portion of the day, Perrier said, “This looks like fun.”

Second grader Emon Julien of Emily C. Watkins Elementary enters the honor roll banquet.

Indeed, inside the New Wine gymnasium, Perrier and her fellow stars were offered food, music and a ton of entertainment options.

Ashanta Antonio, a second grader at West St. John Elementary, was the first to arrive, navigating the red carpet on her crutches for an injured leg.

Classmate Djareani Washington was one of the first to head to the food court, which offered pizza, nachos, hotdogs, hamburgers, chips and a large assortment of cupcakes. After finishing her pizza, she said she was heading to the basketball court.

Armani Luke, another classmate, also was eyeing the basketball court. Meanwhile, a group of best friends grabbed an assortment of props to pose for a photo booth picture. There also was a football throw, a miniature golf course, a laser tag game, arts and crafts and face painting, among other things.

West St. John High students Glenn Grayman and Myles Gauthier were the first to try out a new twist on the old dodge ball game. Each donned a Velcro vest and threw soft beanbags at each other. If it sticks to you, you’re out.

Grayman was a veteran of the old Honor Roll celebrations St. John used to host.

St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff Mike Tregre places a medal on a local honor roll student.

“I’m glad they brought it back,” he said. “I went to all of them. This is cool. It’s different.”

Gauthier, his opponent, didn’t remember the old celebration, but was enjoying this one.

“It’s fun to meet other people I don’t know from other schools,” he said.

Sheriff Mike Tregre was having a great time handing out medals, high fiving the students and posing for photos.

“I’m jealous,” he said. “I never had this. I would have done better in school.”

Beside him, District Attorney Bridget A. Dinvaut was having just as much fun.

“This is exciting,” she said.  “Celebrating our students is so much fun.”

Aspen Murphy, representing main sponsor Marathon, said this year’s event was much better than last year’s.

“There’s so many more kids,” she said. “We love, love, love helping the kids out, and we especially want to encourage them to do well in school. Encouraging them in education is all we want because we want them to grow up and work at Marathon. This is a great way to incentivize them.”