Honorary Jack Elton Award
The honorary Jack Elton Award is an award that replaced the previously named award in the Jesters League known as the Coaches Award. The Coaches Award and new Jack Elton Award is given to a student that achieves an accomplishment beyond that of just their on stage performance. Every year, a student or students are recognized on Championship Day during their award ceremony. This award realizes that there is so much more to performing that simply the product on stage. Jack Elton is a graduate of the High School Jesters. He graduated in 2016 from Green Valley High School. Elton spent 5 years in the High School league after joining as an 8th grader following his sister Samantha Elton. Jack was nominated and voted into the All Star show in his 8th grade year. 5 years later and 5 teams later, Jack found a way to get nominated and voted into the All Star show each of his 5 years in Jesters. This achievement and accomplishment is one that is unparalleled. The High School Jesters Improv League felt that this is something that should be celebrated and should be used as an aspiration for all future Jesters to aim for. The award was renamed and will be forever known as the Honorary Jack Elton Award.
2019 Honorary Jack Elton Award Recipient - Kori Shalmy Kori bled talent from her 1st show as a freshman. After getting her 3rd all star selection her junior year, her goal was to get it one more time her senior year so she could become the only other student besides Jack Elton to get selected as an All Star 4 times. This was no easy feat as her teammates were strong and she spent her senior year battling medical issues. Her medical issues left her in pain most days and performing was hard. Her conditions were severe enough to where she needed surgery but she pushed it off so she could perform to help her team. Kori is a ray of sunshine on stage, but clearly also one in life. Her place in the Jack Elton Hall of Fame is cemented.
2018 Honorary Jack Elton Award Recipient - Roman Leija No student has had a bigger impact on the league than Roman. Roman is the perfect example of someone who fully committed to something, and got the most in return as he could have. Being the best, winning a Championship... is not what improv is about. Working together with people to put on the best performance possible is what improv is. There is no one you liked more than Roman. The memories he created and the boundaries he constantly pushed helped make the league better. Officially a 3 time all star, Roman took his last moment on stage to the farthest place he could. Roman was not just a memory to the league, he was an era.
2017 Honorary Jack Elton Award Recipient - Emma Petersen These awards tend to pull on the heart strings but this award may have topped them all. Emma was deputized by Kopy and her Legacy coach as the team captain, except their her role was a tall order. From losing her theater teacher, several times through out the school year to having to help hold their team together, Emma was dealing with her mom spending close to 2 months in the hospital for a stroke and heart surgery. On top of all of this, Emma still ended up only 1 vote away from making the All Star show this season. Even with every reason to break down and stop... Emma kept on going. Emma's efforts were the definition of this award and possibly the highlight of the 2017 Championship Day.
2017 Honorary Jack Elton Award Recipient - NWCTA aka Park HS Like Emma, Park accomplished their own feat in the face of extreme adversity. The students of NWCTA lost their theater, plays, productions, rehearsals which also was suppose to meant improv. Left without any options, they decided to run their own team with the help of their coach Pete, and practice in the park. Losing the ability to use their school name, "Park" didn't let anything stop them. Despite trying to run their own team themselves, they managed to make it to the league's final 4 matchup. Their hard work did pay off and was an excellent example of this Honorary award. This award was presented to the entire team of NWCTA, otherwise known as Park.
2016 Honorary Jack Elton Award Recipient - SECTA There wasn't a show, a team, or another performer that came into contact with SECTA during this season that wasn't immediately touched and overwhelmed and automatically happier. The love and warmheartedness from this team was contageous. Their wasn't a team in the league that did not fall for the "SECTA charm." To have that much of a positive effect on people, especially people you are "competing" against, is something people hope for. SECTA did this repeatedly, and consistently. Even their acceptance speech of this award was a testament to how well loved they were and how much love they had to give to everyone around them.
2015 Honorary Jack Elton Award Recipient - Omri Blit Omri was in his senior year, and 4th year in the Jesters League. Omri had been apart of the Championship winning team in his Junior year and he must has been shooting for the stars in his senior year. Omri started, created, and taught a team from his magnet school at SWCTA. SW has never had a theater program or teacher, but Omri was determined to have one. As a senior, he coached a group of students, and entered the league with his new team. His new team made their presence felt in the league as well as they took 1st place in their division. No on student has been able to live up to this feat since.
2015 Honorary Jack Elton Award Recipient - Cheyenne HS Every school, every student, everybody knew when the students from Cheyenne were in the building. Coach Megan Blackwell (or Coach Weasel to some) lead an energetic bunch that loved the stage. Shows sometimes were hard to start because of the pre party mentality. "Chey town Funk you up" turned into their entrance song and the song they would all sing together every show. Not only were they a presence in the room, their performance on stage led them to a final 4 appearance. Their spirit was infectious, their performances were stellar, their impact on the league was memorable. This Cheyenne team will not be forgotten.
2014 Honorary Jack Elton Award Recipient - Braden Pleggenkuhle Braden had an interesting season for himself from a personal point of view. After 2 seasons in Jesters, Braden was questioning if he was going to continue in the Jesters league. Fast forward, Braden's team won the Championship this season. To add to the conflicted feelings, Braden wanted to do something more. Braden wanted to run a charity event for St. Baldricks and organized everything himself. He set up a day of shows, organized the paperwork side, got hair stylists, and coordinated the entire charity event during a Saturday of shows. Students, coaches, and families got their hair cut for charity while the shows were being performed on stage. Braden essentially took on a task most adults struggle with, and helped make a great year of Jesters, even more special.
2013 Honorary Jack Elton Award Recipient - Anastasia Barfield Anastasia on paper, had the worst luck. As a teenager, she had a brain tumor that she had surgery to remove. The removal of her tumor left her with a cognitive speech problem that caused her to freeze in the middle of speaking. Her mother hoped something like improv could help. Being embarrassed that she could not speak full thoughts, it took a lot for Anastasia to get to a place where she was comfortable enough to perform. As the year became easier, and Anastasia learned to speak more, she had an accident and hurt her feet. She spent the rest of the season in a wheelchair. Anastasia's team made it to the Championship show with Anastasia in a wheelchair, fighting through her speaking battle. This was the first time this award was presented to anyone in Jesters, and Anastasia was largely the reason the award was created.
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