North County Outlook - Community newspaper serving Marysville, Arlington, Tulalip, Smokey Point, Lakewood

Community gets to tour new M-PHS Commons


Christopher Andersson

photo BY CHRISTOPHER ANDERSSON Anneli Franklin, center, and Dorothy Franklin, right, talk with Marysville School District's facilities supervisor Greg Dennis at an open house for the recently built Marysville-Pilchuck High School Commons building on June 10.

Locals were invited to see the Marysville-Pilchuck High School Commons on June 10 and check out the school's newest addition.

The Marysville School District held an open house at the new Commons and Cafeteria building.

"We wanted the public to have an opportunity to see this space on their own time," said communications coordinator for the district Emily Wicks.

"It's so great to have the community here, and different groups to be behind us and show everything that Marysville has to offer," she said.

The Tulalip Tribes, the Marysville Fire District, Arlington Electric and other organizations came out to the event as well to talk about the new building with the public.

After the school's old cafeteria was closed following the Oct. 24, 2014, shootings the district had to come up with a long-term solution.

Thanks to funds from the state they were able to open a new building at the beginning of this year.

"There is some confusion to how the cafeteria was paid for. It was through the capital budget process, which is money that is already set aside to go to projects like this," said Wicks.

"That's money we would not have otherwise had, so it's fantastic it's coming right into our community," she said.

Since January, students have been able to use the cafeteria.

"I think it has been very successful," said M-PHS principal Rob Lowry.

"We were worried about the lunch lines at the beginning, but that's all worked out after reconfiguring things a time or two," he said.

He said it was great to get back to some normalcy in regard to lunch hours.

"Having one facility that you can get half the kids into, instead of having them spread all over campus, I think it adds to school spirit and camaraderie," he said.

Bringing all the students into one place allows for ASB announcements to be made easier, and for jazz or other bands to get a little bit of an audience for playing.

"The arts have been a little more exposed," said Lowry.

Most of the student response has been good, he said.

"They're really positive about it. They're kind of used to it now, but especially at the beginning they were excited for it," he said.

Community response has also been good, said Wicks.

"I think it's been really positive," she said.

Local Jennifer Green, who graduated from the school and has kids in the district, said the new Commons was a good cafeteria.

"It's beautiful, we like it," she said.

M-PHS students were also on hand in their new student store at the Commons.

"It gives us about twice the amount of room and we have a stockroom where we can put all our storage," said student Martin Steiner, a store manager.

"I didn't think it was going to be as successful because it's a new store," he said, but machines like their Panini maker and frozen yogurt machine have helped sell items.

"Our sales have gone up a lot in this new store. They dropped after the shooting since there wasn't that connection with the old cafeteria," said student Alyssa Lehner, who is also a store manager.


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