No rain fell Wednesday on Don Adamson Field at Brainerd High School (BHS) but there was a rainbow nonetheless, with more than 500 kindergartners dressed in colorful T-shirts for the annual Kinderfriend Day.
Kinderfriend Day — a day when all the kindergartners from the six elementary schools in the Brainerd School District and from three private schools of St. Francis of the Lakes Catholic School, Montessori School in Brainerd and Discovery Woods — come together as a graduating class for the first time on Don Adamson Field as they move on from kindergarten. The next time the students will be standing on the field together will be in 2024, when they graduate from BHS.
It’s a majestic moment for both the students and the parents.
Riverside Elementary School Principal Cathy Nault, who has coordinated and hosted Kinderfriend Day for the past 26 years, said the colorful T-shirts serve a purpose and represent the students’ “bright” futures. Nault said this is a day for the students to celebrate their accomplishments.
From the time a parent puts their child on the yellow school bus to the time they’ll be dressed in their caps and gowns for high school graduation goes by as fast as a “blink of an eye,” Nault said.
Ted Feyder, who has provided his fun-filled songs with the students at the kindergarten event for years, performed such ditties as “You’re Happy and You Know It,” “Bog Down in the Valley” and “Three Short Neck Buzzards.”
After the music program, the students were off to play games. Activities included an obstacle course, relays, parachute, “Grove with Karie Lynn,” bean bags and a play of “Goldilocks and the Three Bears.”
During the games, a student from each school was asked by the Dispatch what they would like to be when they grow up and the best part of kindergarten:
• Ben Maurer of Baxter Elementary School said he would like to be a police officer because they make everyone safe and they catch the bad guys. Ben said the graduation program at the school is his kindergarten highlight.
• Kieran Bihler of Lowell Elementary School said he would like to be a builder or a paleontologist. He said his highlight of kindergarten was having friends.
• Drew Cerney of Nisswa Elementary School said he would like to be a famous fisherman because he loves to fish. Drew said the best fish he ever caught was a sheepshead. Drew said his highlight was Kinderfriend Day.
• Jaden Jay of Riverside Elementary School said she wants to be a cowgirl. She said the best part of kindergarten was playing games, especially bingo.
• Reese Molby of Harrison Elementary School said he’d like to be a teacher or an actor. His favorite part of school this past year was recess.
• Kyd Lukanen of Garfield Elementary School said he’d like to be a cop when he grows up. He said his favorite part of kindergarten was making a goat as an art project.
• John Myran of Discovery Woods said he’d like to be a police officer when he grows up and that recess was his favorite part of kindergarten.
• Charlie Pikula of St. Francis of the Lakes Catholic School said he’d like to be a police officer when he grows up and that doing puzzles was his favorite part of kindergarten.
• Ashton Extrand of the Montessori School in Brainerd said he’d like to be a paleontologist because he likes dinosaurs. He said the best part of kindergarten was doing the homework sheets.