Fantastic Fall Sports Kickoff Bonfire Celebration Draws Largest Crowd Yet (08/23/19)

(Note: Make sure to scroll all the way down past the article for more pics. Feel free to copy and use any.)

Just a portion of the largest gathering in the nine year history of the Bonfire.

The Clarion Area Fall Sports Kickoff Bonfire and Meet the Team Celebration was held on Thursday, August 22nd, at the field behind the high school. This was the ninth annual event and drew by far the largest crowd, a major reason being Clarion-Limestone coming into the co-op with Clarion and North Clarion for football, as well as the schools joining forces for band, cheer squad and hip hop team.

Doug Klein who has been the emcee for the entire history of the Bonfire and his wife Michelle.

Emcee (for life) Doug Klein did his usual masterful job in keeping everything upbeat and fast-paced.

The evening began with the combined Band under the direction of Mr. Chris Curry (Clarion Area) and Mrs. Jennifer Hubler (Clarion-Limestone), with Drum Majors Nathaniel Lerch (Clarion Area) and Meagan Terwilliger (Clarion-Limestone) leading the attendees in the National Anthem.

Combined Bands perform

The band then performed “I Love Rock and Roll” from their fall program, followed by their new fight song!!! “The Victors,” the University of Michigan’s famous fight song, regarded by many, myself included, as the greatest fight song ever, which I sang along with, much to the dismay of those around me.

(Note: Isn’t it fitting to use this song, as many of you know Coach Wiser whistled that song in the halls and locker room for years (even though the Cats’ fight song was “Victory March”, the Notre Dame fight song. And you may ask, “How could an a Notre Dame fan named McClaine say Michigan’s fight song is the best.” Sorry Dave Constantino.)

The Gauntlet

Next the cheer squad led the fans in a new cheer, followed a dance number by the Hip Hop squad.

Doug then thanked many folks that made the celebration possible:

“Clarion Borough, for allowing this great event to take place. Clarion Fire & Hose Company #1, who will light up the night for us in a bit.

Members of Clarion Fire & Hose Company #1 did their usual fine job

“Our Clarion Area Adminstration –Dr. Joe Carrico, Mr. Roger Walter, Mrs. Nancy Mills, and our Supervisor of Building and Grounds, Mike Fagley.

“…C-93 radio, Exploreclarion,, and Computer Support for marketing and promotion of this event.

Cheer Squad performs.

“…AMC Classics Movie Theater and the many booster parents who donated our refreshments for this evening. Merilee Phillips for all of her help. And a shout out to Commodore Corporation for the pallets.”

Doug then followed with thanking “all our parent and teacher volunteers who help to organize this event,” and had everyone applaud.

Hip Hop team

He saved the final recognition for Laura Burford, the Point Person for this big event, thanking her for the yeoman work she put in making it possible and then solicited for volunteers for next year’s event.

Doug also asked folks to purchase a piece “One Team” football puzzle, which when completed will have a puzzle on the walls of all three schools, Clarion, North Clarion and Clarion-Limestone. (For more information on donating to this fundraiser, visit the Clarion Football website:

Golf Team with winning pallet and trophy

Then it was time to meet all the coaches, staff and team members. The teams with head coaches/directors follows:

Volleyball -Shari Campbell; Girls’ Soccer – Chris Schonbachler; Clarion-Limestone Boys’ Soccer – Don Montgomery; Cross Country – Keith Murtha; Boys’ and Girls’ Golf – Jay and Jackie Kerle; Football – Larry Wiser; Clarion Area Band – Mr. Chris Curry; Clarion-Limestone Band – Mrs. Jennifer Hubler; Cheer Squad – Madison Nugent; and Hip Hop Team – Tina Bennett.


After members of each team ran through the “gauntlet”, they were given their decorated pallets by “Pallet Man” (nice Super Hero title) Dave Constantino.

All the teams all lined up directly in front of the stands, with their pallets. And Mr. Carrico presented the huge traveling trophy to this years winner, the Golf Team.

Girls’ Soccer

The night concluded with the crowd gathering on the west end of the field and the volunteer firemen, as these fine gentlemen have done every year, set the Bonfire. Great job, firemen on the Bonfire and on helping to keep this community safe!!!!



Cross Country
Clarion-Limestone Boys’ Soccer
Cheer Squad
Hip Hop
Bonfire pallets
Dr. Carrico getting ready to hand out the trophy
Golf Team hoisting trophy, with some of the other teams gathered by.
Bonfire from another perspective