Seeing teachers outside of school is odd for students.

Seeing teachers outside of school is odd for students.

Seeing them on stage singing, acting and dancing is a different experience altogether and normally packs the house for the annual staff musical. At least that's what Coffman High School staff members are hoping for as they stage "Snoopy, the Musical" Dec. 1, 2 and 4.

"The kids don't understand we were like them once," said director Mike Mann.

"They look at you like a completely different person," said Mike Ulring, Coffman principal and "Snoopy's" Schroeder. "They don't realize you can be anything else than a principal or counselor or teacher. They see us taking risks and getting on stage."

IB coordinator Bryan Stork, who plays Woodstock, agreed.

"A lot of this is the impact it has on the kids," he said. "They say, 'Mr. Stork, I had no idea.'"

Being a part of the staff production also gives Stork a chance to get to know faculty.

"Another cool thing about it is all the different departments in it," he said. "It really builds a sense of community."

In fact, the musical has a member of each department of Coffman High School participating, with the exception of the science department, Melanie Hitsman, library aide and IB coordinator, said.

"It builds a lot of camaraderie," Ulring said. "You might get to know people you never really see around the building. It's a big school."

The work of Charles Schultz has already been featured in the drama department's fall musical with "You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown" and Hitsman said choosing "Snoopy, the Musical" was easy.

"We had a number of plays and thought 'Snoopy' was perfect," she said, adding that students in the fall production will join staff on stage for a musical number. "The neatest thing about the show is the message it imparts. It's all about friendship and that's what we want people to take home with them."

The children of faculty members will also be included in a song.

Ulring said his children ask him each year when the faculty production will be staged.

"They become celebrities at their schools," he said.

While the inclusion of students in the production was a bonus, so was using pieces of the fall production's set to keep overhead costs low, Hitsman said.

Proceeds from the musical go straight to the Coffman PTO's grant program. Hitsman said the PTO doles out a grant twice a year to a staff member.

"It's to support teacher and student initiatives," she said.

About 730 students from Indian Run, Riverside, Pinney, Wyandot and Wright elementary schools will get a preview of the show on Dec. 1.

Some local senior citizens will also get a chance to see the show; Hitsman said an IB student has been volunteering at the Emerald Crossing retirement community and free tickets will be given to some of the residents.

"We'll invite them to the Saturday matinee," Hitsman said.

Showtimes for "Snoopy, the Musical" are 7 p.m. Dec. 1 and 2 and 1 p.m. Dec. 4

Tickets are $4 for students, $7 for adults and free for senior citizens with a Buckeye card. Tickets can be purchased in advance in Coffman's office or at the door.