‘99 Things You Never Knew About Watkins Mill’

by MCS Staff

In addition to photos of old classmates and teachers, old yearbooks are always a great source of fun information about the time they were made. We had the chance to look through a 1999 edition of Watkins Mill High School’s yearbook, called “Grinder”, and came across a fun little article titled ‘99 Things You Never Knew About Watkins Mill.’ Some references will only be understood by students/staff that were at the school during that time, but most are fun facts about the Watkins Mill Wolverines that many can enjoy. Check them out below:

1. A Wolverine is a stocky, carnivorous, North American mammal.
2. Our mascot was decided by students being transferred from Gaithersburg, a steering commitee, the Booster Club and PTSA.
3. Lisa Ostrom, who graduated from WM in ’94, now plays for a European woman’s professional basketball team.
4. Ms. Souder was the first pom captain at WM.

5. WM was featured in U.S. News and World Report, for being a school of the future.

6. Timothy O’Shea was a community member who was active with children in theater. The community asked that the theater be named after him.

7. There are 1,200 seats in theater.
8. The first two baseball games were played at the end of Apple Ridge Road, because the WM baseball field wasn’t ready.

9. When the school opened in ’89, there were no room numbers on the walls.

10. The first homecoming was called Newcoming. Its theme was “Renaissance,” which means new birth.
11. The columns in the main entrance were made with dynamite.

12. Representatives from China, Canada, Australia and all over the United States came to see what the “school of the future” looked like.
13. In ‘89, we were considered ten years ahead of our time.

14. The varsity football team won their first State Championship in ’93 under the leadership of Coach Brace.
15. The first yearbook’s theme was “First Byte”. It represented high tech computers.
16.The first Grinder (yearbook) cost only $45.
17. In ’90, only 150 students were allowed to receive parking permits with designated space numbers.

18. In ’89, there were a little over 800 students at the Mill–only sophomores and juniors.

19. Between 11 p.m. on May 21, 1990 and 6p.m. on May 22, 1990, unknown persons defaced the school building with spray paint. “Dickoff” and “S.V.H.S.” and “Seneca V.” were discovered on the wall of the gym.

20. The first Mr. Watkins Mill took place in 1991 under the supervision of Mrs. Riggleman, who started the competition at Gaithersburg High School.

21. In September  ‘93, all power was lost at WM when a $25,000 circuit breaker failed.
22. In ’93, three students took part in a fashion show with MTV’s Eric Neis.

23. As an action against vandalism and smoking, bathrooms were locked during all lunches in ’93.

24. $180,000 was spent on art for the school building.

25. In its opening year, the Mill had a big problem with rodents, particularly mice.

26. In ’90, freshman man Curtis Allen a.k.a.M.C. Finesse, unleashed a rap album, entitled, “Nothin Less Than Finesse.”

27. The building cost $27 million to construct.
28. If you were caught with a beeper on WM grounds, because of a bill passed in July, 1989, you’d be subject to a fine not exceeding $2500 and /or imprisonment, if it was for illegal purposes

29. WM was featured in The Washinton Post in ’91, but received a bad rap in regard to alcohol and drug use.

30.In 92, WM was the only school in the county able to communicate with a space shuttle by voice, via computer.

31. There are 2 dark rooms in the school.

32. We have 2,000 lockers.
33. There are 100 rooms.

34. 649 students received O interims for 1st marking period. 35. Only 350 people attended Homecoming in ’89.
36. The Board of Education raised exam weight from 20% to 25% in January, 1990.

37. Every year an average of 15% of students have a problems with their schedule.

38. There are 14 soda machines and 5 vending machines in the entire building.

39. Ms. Kraus races a Camaro.

40. Ms. Frankenfield drives a Harley and races a Corvette.
41. Mrs. Riggleman was a cheerleader for the University of Maryland at College Park.

42. The name of the Grinder comes from grindstone which is the heart of a mill.
43. We had 306 fall athletes.

44. When WM first opened, minimum wage was $3.35

45. Sculptress Lorane Vale designed the comical stone sculptures in the courtyard.
46. In ‘94 the school day ended 30 minutes later due to the blizzard.

47. Soviet cosmonaut, Vladimir Titov, one of the two men to orbit the earth for 366 days, visited our school in February, 1990.

48. Mr. Digwell wasthe final statue to be placed in the courtyard.

49. We eat 32,400 lbs. of fries each year.
50. The youngest teacher at WM is Mrs. McGaffin.
51. The girls varsity volleyball team was the first athletic team to place a championship banner in the gym.

52. We eat 11,016 lbs. of tacos each year.

53. We buy 27,00 Little Debbies each year.

54. The number of buses that come to WM daily is 31.
55. The number of students who ride buses is585.

56. Approximatley 30,240 cheese burgers are served per year. 57. The class of ’97 put for sale signs in front of WM as a prank.

58. The first varisty footbal touchdown was by Brian McDermott.
59. Ceramics classes use 3500lbs of clay a year.
60. For the first six years at WM, our track was unusable when wet.
61. Mr. Sampselle advised the Gaithersburg High School yearbook for sixteen years.

62. Mrs. Nolan lived in the Bahamas for five years.
63. The first lacrosse victory was in 1990, when it was still a club sport.
64. Mrs. Riggleman’s brother-in-law manages the Chicago Cubs.

65. Matt and Tiffany are the most common Mill names.

66. Mrs. Shelton’s son played professional football for the Redskins.

67. Mrs. Croker likes to Jet Ski

68. WM has a fishing team.
69. The Class of 2000 was the first freshmen class not to come in last in Homecoming Halls.

70. The Booster Club contributed $5,000 to buy the shed on the lower field, and the spotlights in the theater.

71. The blue of our school colors was chosen by G-burg students who wanted to keep something from G-burg High School.

72. A varsity basketball game versus Sherwood had six overtimes.

73. The Class of ’99 began this school year with less than$2000 in the Treasury.
74. Mr. and Mrs. Torrence and Mr. and Mrs. Naylor work at WM.
75. Ms. Carnvale is an avid golfer who has won many tournaments.

76. The class of ’90 put student cars on the curbs as their prank.

77. There were two securty guards when WM opened.

78. Now, we have 5 security guards.
79. Violence, crimes and vandalism decreased at WM in the last 10 years.

80. The most fights in one day was 5.

81. In ’91 when the Lacrosse team beat Calvert, Mr. Bonde shaved his beard for the first time in 32 years. He’s been shaving it every day since.
82. Mr. Deerfield was a counselor in the Army in Korea.
83. The Booster Club contributes approximately $25,000 annually to the school program.
84. Mrs. Pavlik was a science teacher here before becoming a counselor.
85. Mrs. Gilleland received an outstanding award from the Gaithersburg Chamber of Commerce.

86. Mrs. Torrence was featured in U.S. News & World Report, Oct. 26, ’98 in an article on speech pathology.
87. We eat 10,800 Champs Pizza per year.
88. Volleyball, golf and softball have the best sport’s record at WM.

89. There are 23 stairwells in the school.
90. 1st assembly of 98-99 school year was for meeting Mr. Martinez.
91. Mrs. Furrow is an amateur naturalist and a master gardener in Mont. Co.

92. Mrs. McGaffin graduated from WM, then she was Becky Brinkman.
93. 46 staff members opened WM.

94. There are 14 student bathrooms.
95. Mark Bryant of Hootie and the Blowfish spoke at’96 graduation.
96. Ms. Daniel has been to space camp.

97. Bye-Bye Birdie was the first musical.

98. Mr. Berry wears a 15E shoe.
99. Miraculously, Ms. Sailer did not have a nervous breakdown while working with the staff producing this yearbook.

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