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Herriman Journal

Rose tradition takes root in local high schools

Feb 03, 2022 02:53PM ● By Jet Burnham

Herriman students handing out roses to their female classmates on Valentine’s Day Morning in 2020. (City Journals file photo)

By Jet Burnham | [email protected]

Local high school boys are asking for help from the community to ensure that every girl gets a rose on Valentine’s Day.

Donations are being accepted on the gofundme page Valentines Day roses for EVERY girl at HHS to purchase enough roses to pass out to all the girls at school on Feb. 14. The tradition began in 2018 at Herriman High School and has spread to both Riverton and Mountain Ridge High Schools.

HHS juniors Leland Johnson and Noah Jenkins are spearheading the project this year. Leland is the younger brother of Bobby Johnson who began the tradition in 2018. Bobby coordinated his teammates on the cross country team and Leland has coordinated his teammates on the swim team, but any boys who are willing to help fundraise or dethorn and hand out the roses are invited to help.

RHS cross country coach Chase Englestead is impressed that the boys organize the project without any help from staff members.

“I think it's cool that they take the initiative without being compelled to do it—I think that's an amazing attribute,” he said. 

Englestead said providing this service to their classmates not only makes the boys feel good, it has also strengthened their relationships with each other.

“It's a thing that they do together as a team and it was something that, last year, Herriman’s team and our team shared, which was pretty cool,” he said. “There's a better camaraderie between those two groups because they shared in something like that.”

Boys from HHS and RHS combine fundraising efforts and then split the roses. The boys ask friends and family members to contribute to the fund. Last year, they even reached out to professional runner Craig Engles over social media and he donated $5.

“We just reached out to him and he was totally down, which is cool,” RHS junior Jake Seegmiller said.

The boys hand out roses at every school entrance on the morning of Feb. 14 and then continue to pass them out in classrooms and hallways throughout the day.

RHS junior Tyler McDougal said it took most of the day last year but the boys were committed to make sure every girl received a rose.

“We had some people roaming the halls to make sure that everyone gets found,” he said. “I remember finding this one girl who was just looking down while she was walking, just doing her thing.” Her surprised and excited reaction when he offered her a rose made his day.

“It made me feel really happy,” he said. “It was just really fun to do something for someone that's not an opportunity that you just do all the time—you can't just buy a million flowers and hand them out, so this is just awesome.”

Leland said the purpose of the project is to reach the girl who really needs a boost to her day.

“The goal was to make not every girl in Herriman [high school] to feel special, but to make at least one girl feel special,” he said. “And if you do it to everyone, then at least one of them is going to feel special.”

Last year, the project spread into the community. After the boys had handed roses out at HHS and RHS, there were still some left over.

“We had so many roses left over and we're like, ‘whoa, what do we do with all these?’ and so we just kept going,” McDougal said. A group of boys headed to a shopping center and gave roses to women there.



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