BEEF: The Spirit of St. Albans
BY MIKE SCHMANDT ’14
What is it that connects every student, alumnus, parent, grandparent, faculty member, coach, or staff member to St. Albans? At a School that prides itself on its diversity of talents, ideas, and skills, what brings us all together to form the close-knit St. Albans community that we all have come to love? It is a sense of pride in the community we are so privileged to be a part of. Our pride in St. Albans is the glue that keeps such a diverse group of people and ideas together. It is what forms the brotherhood among the students and the friendships among the parents, faculty, coaches, and staff. Our pride in the School is what drives us to work harder and achieve more, but it is also what checks us when we are tempted to make hasty and sometimes risky decisions.
As Mr. Wilson says “when one is honored all are honored,” therefore at St. Albans, where there are clubs to celebrate a plethora of ideas and hobbies, it is only fitting that one special club celebrates our pride in the School and the community we love. This St. Albans institution is known simply as the BEEF club.
The BEEF club, perfectly summing up the mindset of all teenage boys, is short for Big Eaters Enjoy Festivities. St. Albans great James “Miles” Fisher ’02 formed the club 13 years ago after noticing the lack of a booster club at STA. BEEF was an immediate hit. Members worked to excite the student body about upcoming sporting events while organizing caravans so that as many people could get to away games as possible. Unfortunately, after about eight years, the influence of the once great BEEF club began to dwindle.
For two years, it was talked about only in whispers, a mere memory of happier times, but in the fall of 2010, under the stewardship of the Class of 2011, the BEEF club made its triumphant return. Since then it has been growing stronger and stronger every year. Every student at STA is a member of the BEEF club, which has branched out to support not only the sports teams, but also the It’s Academic team a local quiz show for high schools that airs on NBC.
New traditions, such as the BEEF game, where the entire student body receives a BEEF shirt and attends the first home basketball game against Landon, have become highlights of the year. In addition to creating new traditions, the club has also embraced social media. The BEEF account on Twitter (@STABEEFCLUB) provides students, teachers, and parents alike with news from different STA sporting events as well as acknowledging students for their academic achievements.
Overall the BEEF club has been able to unite the entire student body, freshman and seniors, sophomores and juniors, through our common love of sports, support for the academic achievement of our fellows, and pride in St. Albans.