In a heartwarming display of community spirit, the Gurney Elementary Service Learning Club and the Chagrin Falls High School Interact Club joined forces on Monday, May 20, to bring joy and vibrancy to the residents of Hamlet Village. 

Twenty third-graders from Gurney Elementary traveled to the high school, where they collaborated with the Interact Club members to create a beautiful array of potted flowers. The students worked in small groups, sharing their favorite memories of the Chagrin Falls Blossom Time festival and decorating the pots with care.

"We were excited to host this joint volunteer effort to plant flowers for Hamlet Village, enhancing residents' well-being, fostering intergenerational connections, and promoting community engagement," said Mrs. Karen Sindelar, co-adviser of the CFHS Interact Club. "Students thoroughly enjoyed the activity, making it a rewarding experience for everyone involved." Janet Coriell is the other co-advisor of the CFHS Interact Club.

After adding soil and vibrant blooms to the pots, the students crafted heartfelt pictures and cards, imbuing their creations with personal touches for the Hamlet residents. The Interact Club then delivered the potted flowers to the senior living community, spreading joy and brightening the day for the residents.

"The high school and elementary students enjoyed working on a project together," remarked Mr. Dale Tschappat, co-adviser of the Gurney Service Learning Club. "It was a joint effort to bring a little cheer to Hamlet residents." Courtney Mooney is the other co-advisor of the Gurney Service Learning Club.

The collaborative service project, aligned with the School District's theme of "CF Together," exemplified the spirit of unity and compassion that defines the Chagrin Falls community. Through their actions, the students not only beautified the surroundings but also forged lasting memories and strengthened the bonds between generations.

“Our District's theme, ‘CF Together,’ truly came to life during the recent flower planting activity that united our elementary and high school students,” said Director of Student Advancement Jarrod Mulheman. “This event is one of many collaborations this year that strengthen the bonds across our schools and foster a sense of community and shared purpose. A special thanks to Ms. Coriell, Ms. Sindelar, Mr. Tschappat, and Ms. Mooney, who organized this event. These dedicated educators continuously inspire our students to grow and thrive through such collaboration activities.”

Photos were taken by CFHS student Lucy Hopkins. As a service, high school photography students photograph various school events. 

Club co-advisor, Karen Sindelar, works with high school student, Natalie Zalud. 

Freshmen twin brothers, Josh and Jake Vasko, are members of the Interact Club. They reminisce about their time at Gurney with third grader Will Westendorf. 

Third grader, Rowynn Waddell, and high school student, Ash Herman, worked together to plant the beautiful flowers. 

Gurney guidance counselor and service club advisor, Mr. Tschappat, catches up with former students. 

Emery Henry and Maddie Schron, third grade students, shared some laughs as they added designs to their flower pots. 

Both service clubs worked together to share some joy this spring! Pictured left to right: Eveleen Malley, Paige Lower, Eileen McGroarty, Rowynn Waddell, Ash Herman, and Brianna Baioni.