A tradition tipped over: Golden Cow canceled


the history of golden cow

Nicole Schroeder

The annual lip-sync and dance competition, Golden Cow, has been cancelled this year for the first time since it was originally created in 1993. With only three groups signed up this year to compete in the event, the Student Council voted to cancel Golden Cow for the sake of student time and interest.
Senior Hannah Pohl, a member of the Student Council, said while the decision was disappointing for many, there simply weren’t enough competitors enrolled to allow the Golden Cow competition to take place this year.
“The unfortunate truth is we only had three teams sign up, and it’s difficult to put together a show like Golden Cow with just three teams,” Pohl said. “We didn’t have a lot of interest specifically from the underclassmen, and I’m personally upset by that because I think Golden Cow is a wonderful event and a great tradition that I hope lives on after this year.”
For the three groups that had previously signed up to compete in Golden Cow, Student Council is offering them an opportunity to perform their dance in front of the school at the Homecoming assembly. Still, senior Clayton Warder, who planned to compete in a Golden Cow group known as “The Calf Strators,” is disappointed at the prospect of not being able to compete in Golden Cow.
“We’re disappointed. We fully understand that it is a lot to put on and ask people to pay for when there would only be three acts, so … I personally [understand why it was cancelled],” Warder said. “I wish they had really gotten the word out and maybe made a few announcements or in general made it so more people knew about it.”
Competitors aren’t the only ones affected by the cancellation of Golden Cow. In the past, the event has served as a fundraiser for various local charities, and was first formed to help raise money for Rockin’ Against Multiple Sclerosis (RAMS), a movement at the University of Missouri-Columbia and in conjunction with Hickman High School.
This year, the proceeds from the event were supposed to be donated to the True Life Fund through the True/False Film festival. However, Civics Studies teacher Kelley Wittenborn, who was helping to organize this year’s Golden Cow, said no other fundraiser is scheduled for the charity despite the event’s cancellation.
“That was the main difficulty for us in cancelling — the loss of an opportunity to donate to a charity,” Wittenborn said. “Because of this, we are planning on having much of the proceeds from Courtwarming, which we will begin publicizing next week, go to a charity that the King nominees will select.”
Pohl said the largest problem the school faces with Golden Cow’s cancellation, however, is the continuation of such a tradition at RBHS.
“Usually it’s a really popular event, so [Student Council] was kind of surprised when so few teams signed up. I don’t think it was a lack of attention for the event necessarily because I know a lot of people are upset by the cancellation and were planning on going,” Pohl said. “I hope that the tradition lives on for future years. The underclassmen on Student Council will definitely work to keep the tradition up and running.”
Though Wittenborn said she was upset at the event being cancelled, she understands why Student Council made such a decision. She said she simply hopes it doesn’t deter students from participating in the event in the future.
“I am saddened and disappointed, as I know much of the Student Council is about having to cancel. Cancelling traditioned events at RBHS is not something we take lightly, but ultimately it was decided that … there was a lack of interest this year,” Wittenborn said. “I truly hope it won’t affect the viewpoints of Golden Cow going forward, especially for the younger students who haven’t had a chance to see it work the way that it was intended and used to be. I am hoping next year we can get some ideas going on how to breathe new life into Golden Cow and make it something the students really look forward to participating in again.”