Teen Talk: Students gather for ASB conference at Disneyland


Every year on the Monday before Thanksgiving there is an ASB conference called California Association of Directors of Activates (CADA) at the Disneyland hotel. Schools from all over the Inland Empire are invited and around 2,000 kids attend. Only fifty kids from each school can attend. In our ASB, officers have first priority then seniors and so on. I was able to attend this year because I am a sophomore class president. The convention has keynote speakers and special sessions about things on how to improve our schools.

On my random ticket, I got the classes about achieving with obstacles, teambuilding and helping through social media. In the first session the speaker, Kevin Laue, was missing an arm. He was born without his left arm and spent the session telling us his incredible life story and achievements while overcoming his obstacles.

The second session about team building was definitely the most fun. The keynote speaker, Eddie Slowikowski, was the leader of this session. We were divided into random teams with people we did not know and played games like name that tune and running with two people locked together. When teams did something well they would get the chance to earn bonus points by coming up with our own cheer for our team name. By the end of the session I had had a lot of fun with these strangers that I had just met.

The third session about preventing cyber bullying and promoting school events while on social media was taught by Kim Karr. We saw pictures of people on Instagram with hateful comments or negative implications and we had to decide what we could do to help that person. We also learned about the societal disconnection caused by phones.

When all three amazing sessions were complete, we went to a huge banquet hall to have lunch. When we went in, there was an enormous dance floor and big inflatable obstacle courses blown up. After lunch we spent almost an hour having fun while racing on obstacles courses with kids from other schools. There was one inflatable that was like big balls from the television show Wipeout that I failed miserably on.

After the conference our ASB teacher handed us our Disneyland tickets and set us loose. From just walking through Downtown Disney we could tell that Disneyland was having a pretty busy day. When we arrived inside we knew that since we only had a couple hours by ourselves we needed to get a Fastpass for a ride. We walked all the way to Splash Mountain through the packed crowds of people on vacation from school.

We got our Fastpass for Indian Jones but soon discovered the ride was broken down. Since they didn’t remove people from the lines yet, we decided to wait. We waited an hour but we were the first ones in line when the ride reopened. We were really excited because we got to sit in the front of the car. The ride was so much fun.

Next, we were ready for Splash Mountain. Again we made the journey through masses of people to get from Adventureland to Critter Country and somehow found ourselves in the extended Pirates of the Caribbean line. We managed to get out of line for a ride we did not mean to be on. When we finally made it to our Fastpass entrance at Splash Mountain, we learned that the ride was closed for at least a couple of hours, and with our time running low, we just decided to give our Fastpasses to a woman in line.

We needed to be back at the lobby of the Disneyland Hotel at 5 p.m. because our teacher was getting us pizza and we were going back into Disneyland for a few more hours as a class. After the Splash Mountain debacle we didn’t have enough time for another ride, so we just went through stores in Downtown Disney on our way back to the hotel.

As a class, we got to go on Pirates of the Caribbean an Big Thunder Mountain. Big Thunder was an awesome ride, but after it was over we had to leave since all of the other lines were too long.

CADA was an awesome experience, and even though we didn’t go on too many rides at Disneyland, it was an amazing time. I hope I can go again next year.