Snow days are both wonderful and cruel. On the one hand, you get a day off – hooray! On the other, you’re usually awake and ready to go when you find out, or the weather is so dangerous that there’s little else to do but stay inside and keep warm.
But no matter how old you are, those first magic moments of finding out that work or school is canceled still feel magical. For one Michigan school district, their news was a pleasant and epic surprise.
Apparently, school administrators around the country are finding fun and unique ways to deliver the good news of a day off in the midst of bitter cold temperatures. But when Swartz Creek Community Schools in Michigan decided to cancel classes on January 29th, superintendent Ben Mainka and high school principal Jim Kitchen took it to the next level.
Mainka and Kitchen delivered the news to students and parents via a video that has since been viewed over one million times on YouTube. But they start off their announcement assuring that it’s not going to be the kind of silly video announcement that other administrators around the country have made.
They call the other videos in which administrators come up with “ridiculous songs,” play music, and don sunglasses “an epidemic across our country.”
But it’s all said in good humor as they launch into their own version.
Determined not to make “absolute fools of themselves trying to cancel school for a snow day,” they can’t resist the opening chords to Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.” That’s when Mainka “accidentally” breaks into song, but with some altered lyrics.
Softly singing “I heard there was a winter storm…” he’s quickly interrupted by Kitchen, who pulls the team back together for the rest of their announcement.
After insisting once again that they are not going to embarrass themselves by singing a snow day song, the music starts again.
And that’s when the two are bitten by the snow day song bug. Mainka dons his sunglasses and begins singing again.
I heard about a winter storm;
It’s cold and dreary, stay home, stay warm;
It’s cold and it’s a snowy winter morning.
Now it’s Kitchen’s turn for sunglasses and singing.
It’s clear the two are ready to blow all other snow day song videos out of the water. But it’s when Mainka sings “It goes like this when the snow hits; the busses can’t get out of it” that you realize this guy really has some pipes. Even Kitchen looks surprised.
But he’s not the only one who can sing. Instead of the original chorus, they change their lyrics to “It’s a snow day; a winter cold day” and both men sing in perfect harmony.
When Kitchen launches into his part, there’s no doubt that the kids watching were not only excited for their snow day but probably blown away that their principal could sing so well.
He even sings of his intention to bribe the superintendent with cookies to get an extra day off, but Mainka doesn’t look amused.
Since no one really expects a snow day and they’re fairly rare up north where it’s cold so often, you have to wonder how much time these guys had to prepare such a great vocal performance!
As soon as the song ends, the duo takes off their sunglasses and snaps out of it, unable to believe what had just happened.
Kitchen asks “what just happened” and Mainka replies that it was like an out of body experience.
After apologizing for whatever just happened while they were possessed by the music, the two inform everyone that school is, indeed, still canceled.
Check out their performance below!
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