NHS to take over Holiday Secret Shop in 2017

For the last three decades, CHS’s business department, managed by DECA club students and teachers, has hosted the Holiday Secret Shop in the F-wing to provide a place for elementary school children to buy gifts for loved ones during the holiday season. In recent years, the shop has generated in excess of $10,000 each year, with all profits benefitting Carmel DECA. However, with Carmel Cafe’s reopening at the beginning of the 2017-18 school year, space formerly utilized to host the event has now been eliminated. As a result, the business department and business teacher Laura Cardamon, who has remained in charge of the Holiday Secret Shop since her arrival at CHS, will no longer lead the fundraiser this year.

Cardamon was contacted for her opinions on the transition but was unavailable for comment.

“It’s certainly been a DECA tradition to host the (Holiday) Secret Shop every year. It’s always been a great experience for our kids and younger students throughout the district,” Chard Reid, business teacher and DECA advisor said. “But for us, it’s just not something we’re going to be able to do this year due to a number of constraints.”

Due to these roadblocks, the National Honor Society (NHS) has planned to take over the program in preparation for the 2017 holiday season.

“It’s really a shame that we can’t continue to be involved in the shop anymore,” DECA member and junior Aubrie Bradbury said. “It was one of the better opportunities new DECA students had to get involved with the business program and get real life experience in managing a place of business.”

In the past, the Holiday Secret Shop has traditionally opened in the final weekend of November, often spilling into early December to offer children several days to purchase gifts. More information on when and where NHS will host the shop this year are set to be announced in upcoming weeks.

“We’re willing to give NHS all of our supplies and offer any tips we can to allow this to succeed this year,” Reid said. “For us, this year, it just doesn’t fit with the way that we’re trying to take the department. And for our students, teaching leadership through a management-driven environment is easier to accomplish in the Cafe rather than the Holiday Secret Shop.”