Timpview Traditions: Linking Past and Present

“Tradition is not the worship of ashes, but the preservation of fire.”
― Gustav Mahler


Timpview is full of people: students, teachers, and administrators. From those who just got in to those who feel they can never get out, every individual has their own thoughts feelings and beliefs, but we are held together by the traditions that we celebrate.

From the small everyday things like moaning about the state of the school parking lot to highly anticipated events such as Prom, the things we repeatedly do shape our time here. When asked to share her thoughts on traditions, Mrs. Van Orden, a beloved english teacher who has been at Timpview for 25 years, was quick to point out our annual Veteran’s Day assembly. She praised it for being such a wonderful and uplifting experience that is unique enough to Timpview to give us something of our own to be proud of year after year. She finds that traditions are a source of school spirit and can be extremely important to both a student’s emotional and academic success.

The mural above the stairs into the commons is one of the longest running traditions at Timpview. With a new thunderbird added every year by the student government, it represents a literal gathering of students throughout the years.

Emma Davidson, a member of Timpview’s marching band, recounted a tradition recently lost with the exit of Mr. Harold. Before performing she and others would lie down in the band room with the lights off as their director gave them a motivational speech. Davidson says that “[It was] really important in bringing the group together.” However, they continue to have ordinary pep talks in sections before performances, helping to bring them together and get them excited for what’s to come.

The theater department also has their own pre-performance traditions. Hanna Schneck, current theater president, shared her experience. As a group they have a very specific call time schedule: pep talk from the director, a cheer they’ve been using for well over a decade, and unplanned inspirational words from senior members of the group. She says “Our pre-show ‘rituals’ and traditions create a sense of unity and energy before we perform.”


“Just because something is traditional is no reason to do it, of course.”
― Lemony Snicket, The Blank Book


Not every tradition is worth keeping, however. Along with her words of praise for traditions like the Veterans Day assembly, Van Orden also shared her insights on traditions that have gone wrong, her best example being senior pranks. While some were clever and relatively harmless, others went too far. The addition of soap to the atrium’s pond resulted in the death of all of our fish. When students created an artificial pond in the building by filling the former sunken section of the commons with water and fish, it created a sense of chaos rather than one of fun.

Good or bad, right or wrong, the things we do year after year shape our time at this school. Every time we don our orange and blue for a spirit assembly or pretend to know the words to the fight song, we’re participating in traditions, and that’s what makes us Timpview Thunderbirds.