AZLE — Just days before Election Day, Azle Junior High School celebrated its 70th anniversary by hosting its first-ever fall festival on Nov. 4. The big event featured live music courtesy of the AJH jazz band, over 50 vendors, a slew of food trucks and a variety of fun activities for crowds of students and their families. School leaders hope the festival is the first of many to come in the future. The festival was held on the planned site of a future new AJHS, tucked between its two historic gyms.
Because voters approved the Azle Independent School District’s $151.5 million bond proposal on Nov. 7, plans will move forward to replace the 1950s era junior high’s main building with a larger, modern facility to house sixth through eighth grade students by 2026 and tackle other district-wide issues. During the festival, school staff and administration reminded parents to vote ahead of the election.
“We have never had a fall festival before, and Lindsay Thomas and Lindsay Smith, secretary and librarian, put all this together and have done an amazing job,” Principal Brian Roberts said. “There’s been great vendor turnout, food trucks, looks like everybody is having a great time. I couldn’t have asked for a better experience. This will be our first annual and I use the word annual because I’m sure we’ll do it again. The jazz band, they sound excellent. Mr. Chapman has said this is one of his best bands ever so I’m glad they could be out here to help entertain the community. It’s a great community event, fantastic.”
Stephanie Jordan Levy is an English teacher, cheer coach, National Junior Honor Society advisor, student council sponsor and department lead in her 15th year at AJHS. Levy took an active role in assisting Thomas and Smith to ensure the festival ran smoothly, and was overjoyed with the day’s turnout.
“It’s been a great first festival and it’s nice to see all the people out here enjoying what we’re doing,” Levy said. “Hopefully, they’re supporting our vendors so it can be a success and we can do it again some other year. It’s been great weather — we’re very lucky. It’s been a great turnout. It’s nice to see all the people out here supporting our school.”