Mount St. Mary Academy
Favorite Traditions and Events

Traditions at Mount St. Mary Academy

 You don’t reach 165 years of school history without creating a few favorite traditions. Mount Girls will tell you that one of the advantages of attending an all-girl school is how much fun you can have! All of our students experience a number of all-school events and traditions during their four years here. Many a student or alumna will list some of these favorites – Pep rallies, Lip Sync, Robin Hood Days and Big Sis/Lil Sis lunches – as where the bonds of sisterhood and class unity take root at Mount St. Mary Academy.

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Big Sis / Little Sis

The official “welcome wagon” for ninth grade students, the Big Sis/Lil Sis program pairs each freshman with an older “Sis” to help her get acquainted with Mount St. Mary during her first year at school. Lunches throughout the year make time during the busy school schedule for freshman students to ask questions, and planned activities create opportunities to get to know our new Mount Girls and make them feel welcome.

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Dances

Homecoming and Prom stand firm as some of the most memorable dances of high school, whether it be for the dancing, the dates, the formal wear or the elaborate themes. However, one Mount St. Mary dance stands out for offering a “colorful” alternative to formal dances. The Back-to-School Dance has taken on the identity as the GLO Dance – “Glo Hard or Glo Home.” Started several years ago, the GLO Dance has become a phenomenon that fills the Mount St. Mary gymnasium each year with over 500 girls and boys showing off their best dance moves. Mount Girls across all grade levels come out decked head to toe in neon to “glo crazy” –  a great way to start out the school year!

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Pep Rallies

A Mount St. Mary Academy pep rally cannot be described. It must be experienced in person. Whether the classes are competing with costumes, chants or performances, the noise and energy in the Mount St. Mary gymnasium take SPIRIT to a whole new level. At pep rallies, Mount students support their athletic teams, kick off their Christmas season, and honor their fellow classmates at Homecoming. Nothing brings classes together like a well-united pep rally class cheer, and let’s not forget that these assemblies also feature some of the school year’s best skits!

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Mercy Day

Each year in September, Mount St. Mary Academy and the Sisters of Mercy worldwide celebrate the commencement of the Mercy ministry on a day universally known as “Mercy Day.” Students report for work at a number of sites in the community for an all-school call to service, which honors the ministry of the Sisters of Mercy. The Mercy Day celebration at Mount St. Mary Academy recognizes the ministries of Sisters in Arkansas and includes a scholarship presentation held on the school’s campus.

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Halloween

Mount Girls love Halloween!  A fun day for the whole school, the Halloween tag day calls for creativity from  friends, classes, and teachers. Costumes can be individuals or groups, scary or funny, and the annual costume contest allows all students to vote on their favorites to win.

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Robin Hood Days

In November, students and alumnae collect canned good items as part of the school’s annual Robin Hood Days collection to feed hungry Arkansans throughout the holiday season. The annual can drive culminates the day before Thanksgiving break. Local food agencies load their trucks, and the cans are counted to see which class collects the most. The class that collects the greatest number of cans over their goal receives an early dismissal in January. It is estimated that more than 1.5 million canned goods have been collected by Mount St. Mary Academy since the schoolwide Robin Hood program began in 1982.

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Founders Week and Class Milestones

On February 5th, 1851, nine Sisters of Mercy from Ireland opened what is now known as Mount St. Mary Academy. Founders’ Week, a week-long celebration for Mount St. Mary commemorates special milestones for the school. The beloved “Bell of St. Mary’s” is rung consecutively for the number of years the school is celebrating.

Celebrating milestones of each class marks important transitions in the life of the school community. The Founders’ Day Mass includes the presentation of Mercy Pins to the current sophomore class to remind them to “Live Mercy” in preparation of becoming upperclassmen. At other times of the year, the freshman class receive a Mercy card to welcome them to the Mount, juniors receive the class rings as they become the next school leaders, and seniors receive their graduation tassels as they prepare to go out into the world.

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Lip Sync

While many school assemblies and Masses call on the musical abilities of our students,  lip sync is all “for show!” A favorite tradition at Mount St. Mary, lip sync opens up the stage to student group and solo acts, and even the Mount St. Mary faculty and staff!

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Mercy & Me

Inaugurated in 2011, the Mercy & Me luncheon celebrates Mercy leaders all around us – from the proud mother to the business professional to the community leader. Held every other year, Mercy & Me consists of a morning program for the MSM student body and a luncheon, both featuring a special guest speaker. At this special community event, alumnae, parents and community leaders come together to celebrate the nine values that constitute Mercy leadership. The luncheon program inspires all those attending to show their own Mercy leadership to the community and the world.

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Takeover Day

Many a Mount Girl has said that the culmination of class camaraderie is Junior Takeover Day at Mount St. Mary Academy. The day that the rising seniors officially take their place as the school leaders is marked by a united class theme that greets the school community in the morning before school. The theme is seen and felt throughout the school building, overflowing from the hallways and portrayed in some pretty elaborate costumes. Each year, the challenge grows, with each class trying to out-do the year before while still adhering to the rule to have everything cleaned up in time for the first bell!

Alma Mater

We all love St. Mary’s,
The best school we know of.
We’ll boost her and hail her
To Heaven above.
She’s our alma mater.
There’s no other like her.
And all through life,
We’ll pledge to her
Our loyalty.
St. Mary’s so stately
In knowledge she’s shining.
We’ll always be pining
For her when we’re gone.
We’ll always remember
In May or September,
From day to day,
In work or play,
Our loyalty.
Good-bye to St. Mary’s
The best school we know of.
You’ve given us friendship
And knowledge and love.
And though we’ll be leaving,
We’ll always believe in
The things that you’ve taught
For you’ve still got
Our loyalty.

(Sung to the tune of “The Bells of St Mary’s.” Words, Douglas Furber; music, Emmett Adams, ©1917. Recorded by Bing Crosby for the 1946 film, “The Bells of St. Mary’s.”)