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Baldwin High School Celebrates 91 Years of Sportsnite

A Weeklong Tradition of Spirited Competition and Camaraderie

Baldwin High School commemorated 91 years of Sportsnite on March 9, a beloved weeklong tradition characterized by spirited competition and camaraderie.

The annual event, steeped in tradition and friendly rivalry, is one of the district’s hallmark celebrations. Coinciding aptly with Women’s History Month, it honors the strength and unity of its female students.

Participants unite to lead in arts, dance, stunts, choreography, writing, singing, and event planning. The event took place from March 4 to March 9, starting with a sneak preview on Monday, father/daughter night on Tuesday, mother/daughter banquet on Thursday, tea dance on Friday, and “Sportsnite” on Saturday.

The Gold Team came out on top against the Blue Team 27-24.

“With precision, passion, and leadership, you have brought spirit and celebration not just to the Sportsnite program but to our entire school,” Neil Testa, principal of Baldwin High School, wrote in an email. “It reminds me of an expression… and that is,’train for the job you want, not the job you have.’”

The tradition was pioneered by long-time physical education supervisor Ethel T. Kloberg to help instill female empowerment during a time when sports participation for women was restricted. 91 years later, the tradition sees girls assuming leadership roles, honoring the legacy of those once marginalized from athletic opportunities.

Months of rehearsals lead up to the event, where both teams compete against each other. However, the bonds, friendships, and skills cultivated during those months before the event are something that students will carry with them long after leaving high school. Testa said. 

“During these winter months, you have trained for the jobs that you want, the person you aspire to be, and the goals you want to achieve,” Testa added. “Because Sportsnite is a training ground in developing so many important skills that will serve you so well after you leave Baldwin High School.”

Captain of the Gold Team, Kate Heuser, described the bond she created with her team.

“Sportsnite is a different form of sisterhood,” she said. “It is different than any other club in the school. Working around the same girls for three months helps you form a bond that makes you want to work hard and work for each other. I am proud of my team and what they accomplished!”

Despite the loss, Nina Randazzo, captain of the Blue Team, said the experience would last a lifetime.

“Sportsnite gives me a second family,” she said. “It gave me sisters that will last a lifetime.”

The weeklong event involves all four grades in the high school, allowing seniors to mentor and guide the younger students before they depart for college.

“I am able to mentor and guide the younger students on the team as well as show them what Sportsnite is about,” Claire Notarstefano, senior of the Gold Team said. “Sportsnite is a way for me to be connected to athletics, while also being a part of a family.”

Read original story online in the Baldwin Herald>>