FOP starts its preparations for this year’s holiday party


Nafessa Jaigirdar

Students make table decorations of various designs for the holiday party.


The Annual FOP holiday party hosted its first club meeting of the season Tuesday, October 25 for the freshman and juniors, and Wednesday, October 26 for the sophomores and seniors.

The FOP holiday party has been an East tradition, having been a successful program, run for around 35 to 40 years. Specifically, the FOP holiday party is annual holiday party that the East community helps put on for hundreds of children with special needs, providing them with a day of dining, dancing, and fun.

The Cherry Hill Fraternal Order of Police organizes the holiday party, and then enlists the help of students from Cherry Hill High School East and Cherry Hill High School West to plan and to make decorations for the party in hopes of giving these children a great day. In order to help make the holiday party a success, club members help create decorations and plan out and theme a Santa Room, where children get the opportunity to meet Santa.

To become an active participant in the FOP holiday party, it is recommended that each member attend all the meetings that they are assigned for. Meetings are held in Cafeteria 1 or 2 and typically run after school from 2:30 p.m.-4:00 p.m. with the exception of a few nighttime meetings, which run from 7:00 p.m.- 8:30 p.m. The meetings are scheduled by grade, and copies of the schedule can be found on the official FOP holiday party twitter account, @2016_fop.

During meetings, club members create decorations for every table. These decorations are often snowmen, stars, Christmas trees, or other holiday themed drawings, and club members help color and personalize each decoration so that every single child who attends the party has their own decoration to keep. At the holiday party, which will be hosted on December 19 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Cherry Hill, FOP holiday party participants spend the day helping run the party. Each member who attends the party is assigned to a specific table where he or she helps serve the children food and members dance and interact with the children.

“It’s really fun to dance with them and know that you’ve made a difference,” shared Rachel Cogan (’17), who is serving as an FOP Chairperson.

“It makes me really happy seeing a smile on their face,” Becca Dubin (’17) added, who is also a Chairperson for FOP.

As the date approaches, a list will be sent out of all the FOP participants who have been invited to attend the holiday party. The FOP holiday party chooses a select amount of members to attend the party based on the amount of check marks each member receives. At every meeting, a member has the opportunity to receive 3 check marks next to their name: one for checking in, one for working diligently, and one for staying the entire length of the meeting. When the party begins to approach, participants who rank within a certain percentage of having most check marks are invited to attend the holiday party.

“Definitely try to make it to every meeting,” FOP Chairperson, Erica Thunberg (’17) advised. “And when you are here make sure you are working hard.”

Meetings to begin making decorations and preparing for the annual FOP holiday party began October 25 and will run until around December 15.