From the Missourian comes some coverage of the NJCL:

Striking — startling, even — in the cramped hallway of MU’s General Classroom Building on Wednesday was Alyssa Lapan, a 17-year-old senior at Hickman High School. Wearing a dark dress and ornately painted in black and silver, Lapan was guised as Fama, goddess of gossip and rumor.

She was not alone. There were other Famas. There were chimeras — three-headed creatures that spit fire. There were sphinxes — creatures with the body of a lion, wings of an eagle, and the head and bosom of a woman. Even Oedipus, who loved his mother a bit too much in Greek lore, was there.

The costume contest was part of the 52nd annual National Junior Classical League convention held for the first time at MU. Jeremy Walker, a Latin teacher in Crown Point, Ind., called the convention, which began Monday and will run through Saturday morning, “a weeklong celebration of the classical world.” More than 1,400 teachers and students have come together for lectures, knowledge competitions, art shows, sporting events and dances.

In order to attend, Walker said students have to be at least 12 and members of local and state chapters of the Junior Classical League. Although qualifications for joining these chapters are set on the local level, Walker said students must have taken classes pertaining to classical subjects, such as Latin or Greek mythology.

The event is chaperoned by more than 200 adults, predominantly teachers of classical studies. Many of them are former attendees of Junior Classical League conventions.

Kathy Elifrits, co-chair of the event, is attending for the 21st consecutive year.

“I am distinctly not unique in that,” Elifrits said. “There’s probably 100 of us walking around who’ve been here for more than 20 years.”

Walker said people come together at this convention and bond quickly over a shared interest in something not generally considered a popular subject. He said the convention gives attending students the realization that “there are lots of us, and this is cool.”

“That’s what JCL is all about,” said Brendan Hurley, 16, of Norman, Okla. “It’s about meeting people who like Latin.”

Hurley is attending his second national convention after bonding with new people last year and having “a lot of fun.”

Some of the events the convention’s attendees can still look forward to are a talent show, lectures on classical figures, a tour of MU’s Museum of Art and Archeology and a procession across campus where everyone has to wear a toga.

Cory Pruitt, 19, is attending his first national convention but is already planning to return next year as a chaperone, when the convention will be held at Indiana University. He said his favorite part so far was Tuesday night’s dance.

“I don’t even like dancing, but I had a blast,” Pruitt said. “I danced with my teacher, and that was … awesome.”

Don't forget that Clint Hagen is blogging the convention too ... [anyone else find it strange that there is so much press coverage of school 'Latin Days' and the NJCL and related activities and yet the big organizations like the APA and CAC don't seem to get any????]