CAMPBELL COUNTY, Va. (WDBJ7) It was the calm before the swarm.
Inside the gymnasium at Brookville High School the clock struck 5:45 a.m. and suddenly students came buzzing into the pep rally. And they just kept coming!
We'd told Debby Lester, who was in charge of organizing everything, that our record attendance for these pep rallies was around 150 this season.
"Oh we can beat that," she said. "I'm very competitive."
And she's true to her word.
By the kickoff at 6 a.m., there were nearly 350 students, cheerleaders, football players, band members, and staff bringing the Brookville Bee spirit for over an hour straight!
The students were chantin', the music was bumpin', and the FFE Mornin' Pep Rally will be buzzin' around the school for a long time to come!
So what is it about this student body that makes them different from the other schools?
WDBJ7's Katey Roshetko visited the high school earlier this week to meet some of the leaders of the Brookville SWARM: Wayne Batfel, Landon Mayes, Noah Wood, Mark Druding, Emma Basham, Emma Crawley, Zariah Turner, Mackenzie Howell, Calista Hudgens, Jordan Bondurant, Spencer Simpson, and Owen Burnette.
This group was excited to share their role in the school.
"We represent the student section at Brookville High School," Mark Druding said.
More than 200 of these classmates are the school spirit squad. They host tailgates before every football game and make sure their school athletes feel supported. At any and every sporting event, they're presence can be felt by everyone.
"SWARM is basically the hype club of Brookville," Calista Hudgens said. "We get everyone involved and we try to make school fun, like as fun as possible for everybody."
"This is the one club that everyone is into," Zariah Turner said. "I mean you just come to the football game and you don't have to sit by yourself. you have a SWARM group. Everybody's included. You're not left by yourself."
"I play basketball and just like when we walk out and we just see a bunch of people gathered around you, it gets you ready to play," Landon Mayes said.
"It just shows the football players or whatever sport it is, that we actually care and we're into it," Noah Wood said. "So it gives them a boost to play well and they actually want to do good and we get loud."
And they don't just save the school spirit for the sporting events. Sometimes they even get the cafeteria crowd going during lunch.
"B!" They shout and the cafeteria echos back. "B!"
BHS! BHS! BHS!"
"I think I can speak for all of us, I think we all just love school spirit," Druding said. "And we do stuff to get everyone excited."
Like picking a theme every Friday for their football games.
"The first home game we did a Hawaiian theme," Wood said. "So like basically we all wore like Hawaiian stuff and there were teachers who played Hawaiian music."
It's a school that has fun together the only way they know how.: loud and proud.
"It might sound cliche but we're just one big family. That's the best way to describe it," Mayes said.
Having fun is definitely a huge part of this family.
"Hey mom" one of the SWARM leaders, Owen Burnette, said during the interview. "It's your son, Owen! I'm on the news!"
But in this club, there's a bigger emphasis on giving back and paying it forward.
"The Brookville community seems so large, but when you break it down it's honestly so small," Mackenzie Howell said. "And we're all like a family. So when you do things around the community, it's like you're giving back to your own family."
Each year they raise money for breast cancer awareness.
"We just donated $3,500 from the last Pink Out Night that we had last year to the Pearson Center for Breast Cancer Awareness," Hudgens said.
They also collect food for the community.
"We're collecting canned foods for a canned food drive called 'Trick or Treat so kids can eat,'" Hudgens added.
While they're giving back, they're also preparing to become future leaders.
"We're all coming together to be one and I think that's going to show how to be great leaders when we're older and being able to work well with others," Jordan Bondurant.
They're also learning how to leave a positive legacy in their past.
"As we're leaving Brookville, we're leaving it better than we found it.," Hudgens said. "So if we better not only our school, but our community also, we're leave our mark everywhere as much as possible."
Another thing these seniors will leave behind for future classes to aspire to is hands down one the most fun pep rallies in FFE history. Organizers told WDBJ7 that even they didn't expect this many kids to show up. They actually had to run out to buy more biscuits for breakfast!
They said this pep rally is definitely going to one of the best highlights of the year for Brookville High School.
October 4 will be Week 6 of Friday Football Extra. The WDBJ7 Mornin' crew will be heading to Martinsville High School for our pep rally that week. Do the Bulldogs have more school spirit than the Bees?
Watch WDBJ7 Mornin' from 6-7 a.m. on Friday to find out.