The North Texan, Volume 39, Number 3, Summer 1989 Page: 10
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By Jeanie Gruber
Crystal Lamon has made partying her career since
graduating from NT.
Ms. Lamon, a communications major and a recreation
minor, graduated in the spring of 1979, married and, that
fall, started a business called Employee Recreation
"Organizing, promoting and hosting corporate events
is our speciality," Ms. Lamon said. "From the outside it
director a /
Corky Nelson, head football coach at the University
of North Texas for the past seven years, has been given a
one-year appointment as athletic director by the NT
Board of Regenis. He also will remain as football coach.
Nelson replaces Dr. Richard McDuffie, who accepted
the job of athletic director at the Southeast Missouri
"We think it's important to have someone who repre-
sents continuity, who knows what's been going on
here." said Chancellor Alfred F. Hurley in making the
April announcement. "Corky Nelson is regarded as an
outstanding football coach and we know he will strive to
bring the same level of excellence to our athletic direc-
During his seven years at NT, Nelson has taken the
football team to three I-AA playoffs and the team ranked
first in the country for six weeks last season. This year.
the Dallas-Fort Worth sports writers selected Nelson as
Coach of the Year, an honor he shared with NT basket-
ball coach Jimmy Gales.
"I'm happy to get this opportunity." Nelson said.
"I've always loved coaching football, but I'm very ex-
cited about the chance to serve as athletic director at this
university. This athletic department has continued to
make great strides, but I think we have the potential to
be even better in the future."
The one-year contract as athletic director was a mutual
desire. Nelson said. At the end of the year, both parties
will be free to evaluate their happiness with the ap-
"We're giving him the opportunity to see what he can
do," Dr. Hurley said.
"I do feel like it is definitely a challenge, but it's one I
hpye looked forward to for a long time," Nelson said.
.lHis appointment will necessitate at least one change.
To avo d any possibility of nepotism, he said, his wife
Judj Nelson wl step down as women's basketball coach
aqi a ea position with the Advancement Office as a
fund riser for athletics.
Although Nelson said he plans no major personnel
changes, he does plan to reorganize the athletic depart-
"I wani to spread the authority around a little more,"
he said. There already are two assistant athletic directors,
one for fund raising and one for special promotions.
Nelson said he eventually would like as many as six as-
sistants, adding ones for facilities, NCAA compliance,
academics and communications.
Otherwise, Nelson said, his responsibilities will be
much the same as any other athletic director's: increase
the department's funding, improve attendance at home
games, ensurehigh academic standards and produce a
"1'p very proud of all our programs at this time, from
top to bottom," he said.
looks like a lot of fun, but it's also a lot of work."
When Ms. Lamon and her husband started the qa I-.
based company, they provided corporations with simple
recreational activities, such as exercise classes, golf and
tennis tournaments and weekend vacations. Today the
company offers a more diverse selection of services:
"We just finished organizing and producing a circus,
complete with trapeze and clowns, for Frito-Lay," she
Her. company does everything from corporate picnics
to chartering cruise ships. Picnics, awards banquets and
Christmas parties are the most frequent projects, she
"The activities are a great way for the entire company
to get together and have a good time," Ms. Lamon said.
"and these functions really seem to boost employee
A typical picnic includes obstacle courses, relay races.
horseshoe pitching, flipper races, carnival games and
special activities for the children. "Most of the functions
are family oriented, so we arrange parent-children look-
alike contests, face painting and arts and crafts for the
little ones," she said.
Employee Recreation Services not only organizes
events, it also provides an adequate staff for each pro-
duction. The firm has six full-time employees and 25
other workers who may serve as clowns or softball rel'-
"Their main purpose is to make sure everybody gets
By Richelle Shafer
Susan O'Rear's music classroom at Hodge Elementary
School in Denton has no chairs, no tables, no desks and
the children don't wear shoes.
Not exactly a traditional classroom setting, but then.
Mrs. O'Rear's teaching is not traditional. All she re-
quires is a little musical improvising on the part of her
Mrs. O'Rear uses the method of teaching called the
Orff process. "Orff stresses improvisation ... making it
up as you go along. It takes the musicality already in a
child and brings it out in the open for us to explore, de-
velop and delight in," she said.
The" theory behind the Orff process is that every child
is born with some kind of natural talent, and with the
proper coaching. he or she can express these abilities and
Mrs. O'Rear said that each child has an individual
musical ability, such as singing or dancing. that could
remain unseen unless encouraged by someone. She pro-
vides the encouragement and teaches the student to create
the music instead of recreate it, or do a dance he has
.never done before. The student simply learns by doing
While teaching one of her fourth grade classes a dance
step, Mrs. O'Rear helps the students understand it by
telling them, "Say it and you'll do it. Heel, toe, step.
step, step.'' The students join her while she repeats the
phrase and it becomes easier for them.
Mrs. O'Rear became interested in the'Orff process
while student teaching under Marge Vaughn at Newton
Rayzor Elementary School 14 years ago. But it was Dr.
Avon Gillespie, associate professor of music education
at the University of North Texas, who was her true in-
spiration and the one who certified her in the Orff pro-
Dr. Gillespie said Orff training is done in three levels,
with difficulty in principles and ideas increasing as the
levels advance. "The physical movement is what makes
it (the process) unique. The children learn about music
by actually doing it," he said. Mrs. O'Rear is the first
from NT to complete all three levels and is working on
a master of music education from the university.
She spent last summer in Salisburg. Germany.
studying the method. There she was taught by people
who learned directly from Carl Orff, who developed, the
involved and has a good time," she said.
The company charges on a per-person basis and Jo
rate varies with the number of people attending 'and the
activities chosen. "Rates range from $10 to $100 per
person. The price depends mostly on the food, beverages
and entertainment," she said.
"We have a list of various activities a company can
pick and choose from. This way a company can custom
order an event tailored to its budget," Ms. Lamon said.
Employee Recreation Services also relieves the coq
pany employee who usually organizes events: "Much
the time is spent on the telephone trying to get rates an
references. It is almost impossible for a company em-
ployee to take care of all the necessary details and attend
to a normal workload."
Ms. Lamon said her firm can do the job in about half
the time a novice can, and can get better rates from
caterers, hotels and entertainers. "We don't charge an ad-
ditional service fee, we just pocket the savings we get
from using the vendors so often."
"We have names of jugglers. singers. elves. country
and western bands, belly dancers, stilt walkers, actors.
hula dancers, magicians. cowboys, fire eaters and others
who we use regularly," Ms. Lamon said.
Aside from offering stagecoach rides, horseback rides
and carriage rides, Employee Recreation Services even
offers hot air balloon rides.
"When it comes to creativity and originality the sky is
our only limit." Ms. Lamon said.
process. The training she received there is not available
in the United States.
Dr. Gillespie said Mrs. O'Rear is "a fine musician
who is excellent with the OrtT process and with her stu-
dents. She offers them a strong sense of independence."
The students in Mrs. O'Rear's class sing. dance
play musical instruments throughout the lesson.
even "sing" their response to roll call with a melodious
"I am here." Since the children have an uninhibited feel-
ing in music, they don't mind following their teacher's
instructions, such as "be a piece of paper burning."
"blow like the wind" or "bloom like a flower."
Mrs. O'Rear said when she gives her students one of
these instructions, they actually fold their arms into
their bodies and drop to the floor when they are
"burning," or stretch their bodies out from a sitting po-
sition when they are "blooming."
Dianna Alagood, counselor at Hodge Elementary
School, said "The students love to go to music class.
The parents love the program. too. because the kids love
it." She said Mrs. O'Rear's music program really con-
tributes to each child's self-esteem. Even when children
cannot excel in some academic areas they are able to
achieve success through music. This action-packed class
provides a positive outlet of energy and ideas for the
When 7-year-old Lauren Kitchens, a second-grade stu-
dent at Hodge, is asked about her music class, she says.
"I feel special in there. Dancing is the best part."
Mrs. O'Rear said, "The first thing I try to do in every
class is to remember their names. That's something
special to every one of them. You can't take that away
She said she enjoys this way of teaching because she
is performing. and the main reason she uses the Orff
process is because "it instills in every child the con-
fidence to produce music. It really stresses individual-
The positive feelings the process and Mrs. O'Rear
produce can be seen as she dismisses her students. Many
are smiling and excited and a few even hug her good-bye.
"Until next week," she adds, "think what a better world
it would be if there was more music, dancing and
University of North Texas Summer
Teacher combines music
with unique teaching style
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University of North Texas. The North Texan, Volume 39, Number 3, Summer 1989, periodical, Summer 1989; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc119053/m1/10/: accessed July 20, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting University Relations, Communications & Marketing department for UNT.