When it’s high school football time, it’s logical to believe that everything on campus revolves around the playing field for the night. But the players on the field aren’t the only students who have their calendars circled for Fridays. Football games are also big promotional and marketing opportunities for student clubs. Whether they focus on art, music, or debate, club members often find promising ground for fundraising at these events. With thousands of fans crowding the stands, few venues provide a chance to reach more interested prospective targets.
At First Coast High School on Jacksonville’s Northside, the drama club is particularly active in its efforts. Bouncing along the sideline, the club grabs attention with an enthusiasm that few can match. The club members lined up near the entrance gate on Friday, making them very difficult to overlook. These boisterous displays highlighted the club’s sideline face-painting activities designed to raise money. Bold signs also announced coming auditions for new members. Without the triggering event of the football game, the club likely would have encountered much more difficulty in earning attention.
Non-members won’t find out how much money the drama club raised Friday. On the field, though, First Coast’s football team had a stunning success. Matched against Atlantic Coast High School, the host Buccaneers ran wild in a 54-17 blowout victory. My report for the Times-Union details the game’s biggest story: The seven-touchdown performance from First Coast senior quarterback De’Andre Johnson to lift him ahead of local football icon Tim Tebow on the all-time historical charts. Johnson, a four-year starter who has committed to play at Florida State University, is now in pursuit of several all-time state passing records.