Eight Boulder Creek young men will compete for Mr. Boulder Creek

Eight Boulder Creek young men will compete for Mr. Boulder Creek while rasing funds for St. Jude Children’s Hospital.

Eight young men will compete for the title of Mr. Boulder Creek while raising funds for St. Jude Children’s Hospital via video starting April 30 at dvusd.org/bchs

“It’s a great opportunity to not only earn money for charity, but also to showcase some incredible students,” said Caitlin McAndrew, language arts teacher and student government adviser at Boulder Creek High School. 

“I know we do senior awards for kids who have won scholarships. We have athletic signing days and scholarships but sometimes these other students aren’t always recognized. It’s just another way to recognize these incredible kids on our campus.”

The Mr. BC candidates are nominated by their teachers, and once they are selected, the fundraising starts right away. Buckets adored with the contestants’ photos are placed in the cafeteria to collect donations. 

This year’s contestants are Samuel Baldwin, Ryan Basford, Nathan Blair, Adam Cammack, Nicky Casarella, Lorenzo DeVivo, Benjamin Egli and Lucas Johnstone.

The event has just about everything except for a swimsuit competition, according to McAndrew. Joseph Pitts, who won Mr. BC two years ago, described the process. 

“I know it looks a little different this year, but for ours, we had a school assembly the day before Mr. BC and we did our ‘boys dance’ that we all practiced,” Pitts said. “Then, the night of the pageant, we did everything ranging from our dance act, our individual act, a public speaking portion and we even brought out our family. It was all kinds of fun stuff.”

While it is a competition, it’s all in good fun and for charity. 

The student-run Mr. BC Committee chooses the sponsoring charity, whether it’s local or national. This year the proceeds will go to St. Jude Children’s Hospital. Previous recipients include Daisy Mountain Fire Department, HALO Animal Rescue, Little Kids Rock and the Anthony Bates Foundation.

In the past, most funds come from ticket sales, selling between 350 to 500 seats, according to McAndrew. That’s problematic during a pandemic. This year, it’s virtual, taking away a lot of that revenue.

The contestants and organizers had to get creative to try to fill that gap and have taken to online advertising and even using TikTok to showcase the boys’ talents. Viewers will be able to donate through an online link starting April 30. 

The most coveted title is Mr. BC, but contestants can win other prizes. The contestants vote on Mr. Congeniality. Mr. Generosity goes to the candidate who collects the most money. 

Audience Choice is usually decided by crowd response at the event, but this year, due to COVID-19, students will watch a “sneak peek” preview of the contestants the morning of the event and then vote by phone. Mr. Boulder Creek goes to the contestant who has displayed all of the above.

Pitts is returning to serve as a judge. He said a lot of factors go into choosing Mr. BC.

“Mr. BC is chosen based on a combination of talent, effort being put in, the character of the individual,” Pitts said. “It’s kind of an ‘all of the above’ situation, and you have to take all factors into account.”

While things will be different this year, McAndrew said that it’s still a fun experience and good for the students.

“I’m just grateful for the opportunity to raise some funds for St. Jude,” McAndrew said. “I really appreciate the candidates’ flexibility and our community members who still rise to the challenge, even though people are still struggling due to the pandemic. I think it’s great that we can still show that our community has a really big heart.”