May 2012 Smoke Signals Issue 5
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    May 2012 Smoke Signals Issue 5 May 2012 Smoke Signals Issue 5 Document Transcript

    • Smoke Signals May 2012 Photo by Lexi Harmon
    • Photo by Lexi Harmon Smoke Signals Volume 3 Issue 5 Peters Township High School 264 East McMurray Road McMurray, PA 15317 Phone: 724-941-6250 www.ptmedia.net
    • Meet the Staff Carly Beck Life & Style Editor John Galatic Print Editor-in-Chief Allie Schlafman Layout Editor Valerie Kotar Special Features Editor Katie Denning Managing Editor-in-Chief Christine Manganas Online Editor-in-Chief Katie Finn Life & Style Editor Amanda Moore News Editor Denée Renz Layout Editor Molly Doehring Print Editor-in-Chief Val Gobao Layout Editor-in-Chief Stephanie Hammell Marketing Editor Madison Mincone Sports Editor Liz Weimer Online Editor-in-Chief Julia Gauthier Entertainment Editor Smoke Signals Staff Camille Barnes Madison Creehan Elise Jozwiak Lydia McCall Lindsey McCay Andrea Salizzoni McKenzie Fritz Online Editor-in-Chief Grant Taylor Michelle Thomas Taylor Cox Shane Dazen Jesse Eby Jillian Eby Josh Glicksman Alexa Kennedy Bobby Lewis Laura Purkey Jenna Taimuty Benjamin Zalewski Mission Statement: Smoke Signals is produced six times a school year by Media II, III, and IV Journalism students. The staff adviser is Mrs. Sitler. Commentaries, reviews, and opinion columns are the expressed opinion of the author and not of Smoke Signals, its advisor, or the Peters Township School District.
    • 4-5 PT Focus 6-7 Sports Girls Softball Seeks Success 8-9 Opinion Senior Reflection 10-11 Life and Style Uggs Causing Foot Problems 12-13 Retirement 14-15 People Features Art Plastic Scupltures 16-17 Retirement Part II 18-19 Entertainment Summer Water Parks 20-21 News Features Kony 22-23 Student Work Mixed Art Table of Contents NHS Induction
    • 4 PT Focus Class Officers Field Trip Sparks Change LauraPurkey.StaffWriter With summer getting ever closer, the students of PTHS often lose focus on schoolwork and look forward to the months of June, July, and August. The class officers, however, are already planning events for 2012-2013. Recently, the class officers took a trip to Mt. Lebanon High School. They were able to interact with the class officers from Mt. Lebo, and see how they handle tasks differently. “It was insane, they’re so put together and really know what they’re do- ing,” stated junior class officer Garrett Warmbein. The Mt. Lebanon class officers have a large influence on their school. Not only is the election process much more rigorous than the one at PT, but the ML class officers have other students act as their assistants. In general, they assert more influence over school events with planning, organizing, and enacting. This has prompted the PTHS class officers to take a more activee role for next year. During the trip, the class officers talked with students from Mt. Lebo about many important school events, but the main focus was on prom. Mt. Lebanon has prom on a Thursday night (seniors only), and the next day the senior class has off school. They hold their prom at the William Penn Hotel in Pittsburgh. In addition, once their dance is over, students return back to their high school for an after-party and are locked inside until five AM. “Next year, we hope to try and make prom and other events even better than they have been in past years,” stated junior class Vice President Bryan Hall. Photo by Photography Class Officers Induction Day JoshGlicksman.StaffWriter On Monday, April 16 in the auditorium, 73 students were inducted into the National Honors Society. The inductees attended a brief ceremony, concluding with the holding of a candle while reciting the NHS oath. After the induction, a reception in the library was held, offering the students slices of cake and punch to celebrate. Congratulations to the following students: Alyssa Aburachis Alexis Alavi Cecilia Allison Alisha Ambe Alexis Antonucci Haley Banashefski Ryan Black Bethany Brenneman Rebecca Brott Hannah Carpenter Jennifer Cashman Cara Casilli Lukas Cervenak Riley Crane Lauren Dainesi Thomas Devine Ian Dickey Alexa Ekberg Rebecca Flaugher Jake Floyd Gage Fremer Georgia Gagianas Rebecca Ghobrial Alicia Gialanella Joshua Glicksman Adam Harsch Kelsey Hunter John Hussey Emily Koch Vida Komer Georgia Kourakos Jillian Kovac Katherine Krajovic Leah Krawiec Veronica Latsko Daniel Leon Maxwell Lindsay Anthony Lioon Brandon Lo Gwen Lusterk Melanie Magiske Ryan Malencia Kavan Mally Chase Maszle Katherine McGovern Christina McNeal Italo Merante Adelaide Mikec Kyle Mottola Matthew Neky Nicole Palombo Adam Parker Megan Parker Richard Pfeuffer Ryan Pollack Tyler Pollack Aaron Ranallo Kristina Rhen Melanie Roberts Danny Schuerle Julia Schuerle Matthew Stablein Brenna Sweeney Marcus Ubinger Devin Ulam Olivia Vanistendael Joshua Verner Nicholas Wells Nathan Wolk Nicole Wolowski Clayton Wunderlich Sherrie Yang Macie Zelenko Photos by Mrs. Belcher
    • May 2012 Pointers to a Part-Time Job 5 AlexaKennedy.StaffWriter Thank God, summer is just around the corner. An entire student body is itching to shed its school-time skin and is patiently awaiting the flood of summer euphoria. With the anticipation of this being “the best summer ever” maybe cash will come in handy. However, this cash may not exactly come from your dream job but there are plenty of options available for all personality types. Smoke Signals has compiled a list of jobs for you to spend your sun-shiny days earning some money. “I have had a job as a hostess, babysitter, and tutor, but being a lifeguard is where I belong,” said junior Alexis Aronson. “I get excited for summer because I know I’ll be working.” If you enjoy being in the sun or spending your days lazily by the pool, then lifeguarding is a job you should consider. Lounging in a chair and working on your tan is the ideal summer day for any typical teen and a perk of the job. However, it is not always paradise. You may find yourself scrubbing bathrooms and handing out band-aids to shrieking boys and girls. Requirements include knowing CPR, having a license from the Red Cross, and people skills. Availability is also a major must. Does setting your own fees, choosing working hours, and having no contracts sound like a dream job? Depending on your compatibility with children or lawnmowers, asking around the neighborhood if anyone needs landscapers or babysitters can be the answer. This opportunity could be the job of your dreams, especially if you are the entrepreneur type. With the exception of an onslaught of rainfall or a shortage of the kids’ favorite snacks, the satisfaction of setting your own schedule and helping others is completely worth the trouble. If a sport or hobby of yours keeps you happy during the school year, you are likely to enjoy it in the summer as well. Working at a golf course or batting cage could be refreshing. Driving around golf carts or working a snack shack is time well-spent, and you most likely earn more than minimum wage. Although that may sound ideal, customer service oriented jobs sometimes require you to deal with difficult people. If the school year is too hectic or your return next fall is called off by college, a seasonal restaurant, such as Rita’s, is the perfect place to earn some extra cash. Although the schedule can get hectic, your wallet will persuade you otherwise. PT Officer Stevick Secures Students’ Safety RebeccaPerryman.StaffWriter Peters Township Police Officer Jim Stevick was hired on April 16th for the remainder of the school year. His job is to support the school’s proactive approach to providing a secure learning environment. He was approached by his boss, Chief Freucht of the Peters Township Police Department, because Chief Freucht felt that Officer Stevick would be able to maintain a safe environment while building trust with the student body. Some of the benefits of working at the high school include interacting with students and working consistent daylight hours. Officer Stevick’s main responsibility is to keep the students safe. “We want students to be able to come to us with concerns. We don’t want them to be afraid. We are not here to hurt them, we are here to protect them,” said Officer Stevick. This security extends beyond the classroom into the community specifically focused on the Lewis and Clark Expedition formerly known as Assassins. “The majority of people that live or work in the township are not aware of the game. They become alarmed when they see people dressed in black, running or sneaking amongst houses, businesses and cars,” stated Officer Stevick. “When responding to such calls, officers have no way of knowing if they are going to confront a participant of this game or a criminal.” Officer Stevick believes it is a fun game that he would have enjoyed participating in but he advises students to make wise decisions. After several years as a police officer, Officer Stevick can easily determine the best and worst aspects of his career. “The best part of my job is interacting with people, and the worst part is going to accidents and seeing people suffer,” stated Officer Stevick. “I love the outdoors and my first choice was to become a Wildlife Conservation Officer with the Pennsylvania Game Commission. I soon realized that would interfere with my hunting, therefore the next best choice was to become a police officer. I can’t see myself doing anything else.” Officer Stevick enjoys hunting, fishing and hiking with his family. In high school, he described himself as an “average student” and he swam for his high school swimming team during his junior year. He is a Steelers fan and he enjoys watching college basketball regardless of what teams are playing. During his brief time here, he has noticed one trend among students. “Students avoid looking at me in the halls. Hopefully Officer Jim Stevick hopes to build trust with the high school community while providing a secure learning environment they will open up by the end of the year and be able to approach me with their concerns. I’m not here to scare them,” said Stevick. The high school community thanks Officer Stevick for taking the time to keep our school safe.
    • 6 Sports Lady Indian’s Track: Runners, On Your Mark... AmandaMoore.NewsEditor The coed track team has some of the best athletes in the school. There are no tryouts or cuts, but anyone who is willing to run mile long races, repetedly throw a javelin, or sprint until they can barely stand is clearly dedicated enough to strive for and expect success. The distance girls are working hard under the supervision of Coach John Knabb. The 4x8 relay team, consisting of Kenzie Stepanik, Marisa McKnight, Kristen Czajkowski, and Kara Erinburg is already making great strides. This race is very difficult, and the girls have already been successful at the meets. “John Knabb really whipped us into shape fast,” stated senior Kenzie Stepanik. “We had scrimmages early in the season, so it really helped us.” Thrower Margaret Halo is a freshman to watch. She can throw as far as some of the seniors and loves doing it as well. “The next few years of track will be great. I cannot wait to show people what I can do,” said Halo. As an up -in- coming star, Halo tries to stay in shape by eating right and staying active. On top of track practices, she plays in the Peters Township recreational softball league. “I can’t sit still. I love always being somewhere to do something,” explained Halo. Sophomore Andrea Salizzoni is a sprinter with a lot of heart. Even after suffering a season ending injury, she still stays active in the track team by being a manager. Before the injury, she ran the 100 meter dash and had a personal best of fifteen seconds. She is determined to come back strong next year and go right back up to that time or even better. The Lady Indians Track team is full of desired athletes who compete seriously and enjoy doing it. All the girls on the team are a tight knit group, something that can be detected the second they walk onto the track. Stretching, warming up, and competing together helps the team bond, and with the giant mass of students Photo by Laura Counihan Senior Marisa McKnight sprints to the finish of a relay during a recent track meet. She was a leader on and off the track this year. attending practice everyday, it is no wonder why the team is destined to succeed. “Its not a battle between two teams. It’s a battle against yourself. That’s why I enjoy it so much.” said junior Alexa Kennedy. Photo by Laura Counihan Softball Team Seeks Success ShaneDazen.StaffWriter The Peters Township softball program has always surrounded itself with unwavering talent, and this season is no different. Senior pitcher Tara Konopka and senior catcher Morgan Matetic headline a cast of savvy ballplayers who are determined to capture a section title, as well as a WPIAL crown. The two, who recently signed letters of intent to Drexel (Konopka) and George Washington University (Matetic), will play a large factor in the team’s success. “It’s always been a dream of mine to play past the high school level and having some of my teammates move on as well is special,” said Matetic. Behind the pitcher and her backstop is a team that is as capable as any in the league when it comes to flashing the leather. Sophomore second baseman Tori Weida and senior shortstop Kellie Lewis will be counted on to man the middle of the field. Defense is a major key to succeeding in high school softball, and one of the team’s goals is to tighten up the holes in the field. “If we want to compete with everyone else in the league we need to make sure we are making smart plays in the field and backing up our pitchers,” stated freshman Kellyn Perich. At the plate, the Lady Indians will have to cut down on strikeouts to have a great season. Their section features some elite pitchers, and the team will have to continue to make adjustments to stay ahead to remain a strong contender in a tough section that includes rivals Canon MacMillan and Upper St. Clair. However, there are some personal goals that need to be attained as well. A couple ambitions include improving batting average, increasing RBI’s, and reducing strikeouts. For most members of the team, though, it goes deeper than what looks good on the stat sheet. “I would like to be able to win more section games than we lose,” said freshman Katy Gaudlip. Photo by Carlee Wickstrom
    • May 2012 Under Review: Remember the Titans or Miracle? 7 JohnGalatic.PrintEditor & GrantTaylor.StaffWriter JG: Remember the Titans is in a class of its own when it comes to sports movies. Most movies of this genre are one dimensional, either focusing on only the serious aspect or the humor that can be found in sports. However, Remember the Titans has it all. It portrays a touching story of a high school football team that overcomes racial differences to achieve their ultimate goal: a state championship. What makes the movie so great is that humor can be found throughout its duration. From the hilarious pregame workout to the “yo momma” jokes, the Titans had me laughing for a good hour and 45 minutes. The movie was based on a true story, so some of the more tragic elements, like a devastating car crash, were still included. AP Images Yet, each time, the Titans overcome their adversity to become closer as a team and as a football family. For this reason, trying to compare any other sports movie to Remember The Titans would be pointless. GT: Remember the Titans is a fantastic movie, however Miracle is a much more inspirational film. Sure, Remember the Titans is inspiring because of its theme of overcoming racial differences, but Miracle gives a strong sense of national pride. For those who have never seen Miracle, it is about how the 1980 U.S. hockey team defeated Russia to play in the championship game in which they won for the gold medal. This movie makes you feel incredibly proud to be an American. The joy that the U.S. shows after beating the Soviets is without parallel. The defeat of Russia was a pivotal moment for the U.S. because not only were the Russians heavily favored, but the country was in the midst of the Cold War, and the Soviet Union was the enemy. Every American should watch this movie if they haven’t already. JG: Oh, please. What problems did winning a gold medal in the Olympics solve? Did it actually end the Cold War? I think not. At the very most, it took bragging rights away from the Russians. America already had strong national pride even before that series, and I am pretty sure there have been more exciting sports moments as well. Everyone hypes up the 1980 Olympic Hockey Championship upset as a magical event that took divine providence for it to even happen. Miracle was no miracle. It was simply a group of young men with a great work ethic and an even better coach. On the other hand, Remember the Titans was a true miracle. Perhaps the most difficult thing to maintain in this world is peace. The Titans did not just maintain the peace; they evolved from hating each other because of difference in skin color to loving each other as brothers. Granted, it takes a great team to win a gold medal in the Olympics, but it takes an even greater team to end many years of hatred between races. GT: Sure, Remember the Titans shows how the players overcame racial differences, but it is the story of just one team. Thousands of other schools had to go through the same thing when they decided to integrate their schools. AP Images The team in Remember the Titans represents a multitude of other schools and teams. Miracle, on the other hand, is very unique because there is only one Olympic Men’s hockey team. Their struggles and triumphs are unique because only their team experienced them. To address the problem solving issue, racism still exists in high schools around the country, but the Cold War is over. Without a doubt the players in Remember the Titans share a special bond in the end, but imagine the bond the players of the Olympic hockey team felt after winning the gold medal. They earned Americans tremendous pride in their accomplishments, which, in the end, is insurmountable. Ready, Set, Grow for a Good Cause It is that time of year again. As playoffs continue, several NHL players have put away their razors for a ritual that dates back to the 1980’s. Growing a “playoff beard” became popular during the early 80’s success of the New York Islanders, a team that won four Stanley Cups from 1979-1980 to 1982-83 and has gained steam ever since. It has become so popular that the NHL actually sponsors a ‘Beard-A-Thon’ contest where fans send in pictures TaylorCox.StaffWriter of themselves pre-shaven and monitor their beard growth until their teams are eliminated. Fans even pledge money for the growth of their beards. During the 2012 season alone the NHL site has generated more than $5,375, with all proceeds going to Make-A-Wish Foundation. “I heard of this a couple years ago and have been growing a beard for the playoffs ever since the Pen’s won the cup,” said sophomore Andrew Stroud. Other athletes have joined in on the fun, like Pittsburgh Steelers Defensive End Brett Keisel famously sported a dyed beard during the 2010 and 2011 football seasons. Furthermore, Keisel hosts “Shear the Beard” at the end of the season where he shaves his beard. Last year, the event raised more than $40,000 for Autism Awareness. Whether it is growing a beard for fun or challenging your inner athlete, enjoy the playoffs because it is the only excuse for looking disheveled, while raising money for a good cause. AP Images Gene J. Puskar
    • 8 60 Second Mystery: Questionable Media Reporting on the Trayvon Martin Case A boy was followed, two phone calls were made, and that same boy was shot. In the case of Trayvon Martin’s murder, these are the only pieces of evidence known for sure. Everything else “known” about the last 60 seconds of Martin’s life is He Said – He Said. Consequently, the media has gone into a frenzy using unconfirmed “facts” to decide on the case themselves, instead of letting the court do their job and develop an impartial ruling. Basically, the second this tragedy became breaking news, every single media source immediately took one side or the other. There was no in-between, no unbiased telling of facts. Instead, each different media group used whatever “evidence” they could find to prove their side. Through leaked school and police records, they have made a mess of this case and the people it involves. However, in the end, no matter how much speculation the media does, only two people know what truly happened during that mysterious 60 seconds. Unfortunately, one of them is going to say whatever will get him out of trouble and the other won’t ever be able to tell his side. One example of incorrect journalism surrounds the media’s varying reports about whether George Zimmerman, the alleged gunman, was in- KatieDenning.Managing-Editor-in-Chief jured during the crime. According to CBS, a police officer at the scene of the crime claimed that Zimmerman was “bleeding from the nose and the back of his head.” However, on the other side of the media spectrum, The Huffington Post claimed that surveillance video from the Sanford Police shows that Zimmerman “was ushered into the station without visible abrasions, bruises or blood stains on his clothes.” These two different accounts both boil down to one question: which media outlet’s information is correct? Only one can be, but both are fighting hard to use their “evidence” to support their side of the argument. Furthermore, different media groups are portraying both Martin and Zimmerman incorrectly. The first photos released of Martin were from years ago when he looked young and innocent, not 6’2’’ and 160 pounds. Once that was discovered, the next photos the media used were of Martin in a hoodie. Coincidence? No, the photo was definitely used to evoke sympathy and incite a movement of support for Martin. These same media outlets also chose to portray Zimmerman with his 2005 mug shot, instead of a more recent photo. However, the media sources that do use recent photos of Zimmerman often forget to mention the fact that he was arrested for assaulting a police officer. Finally, some media outlets have used Martin’s suspension (for a bag with traces of marijuana) and the fact that police once questioned him for stealing women’s jewelry (never proven) to paint Martin in a bad light. These same media groups also follow blogs who claim that Martin stole the Skittles and Arizona Ice Tea he had with him on the night of his murder. This fact alone proves that media groups are pulling at straws to persuade people to agree with their side of the story. Furthermore, it’s these same media groups that fail to mention altogether that Zimmerman was arrested for battery of a police officer and therefore was not permitted to become a police officer. Additionally, they often gloss over the fact that as neighborhood watchmen, Zimmerman was not legally supposed to carry a gun. After all the supposed “facts” have been laid out and worn to pieces, no one is any closer to knowing what truly happened on that tragic night. However, the media has made this a race issue and a national movement by using Martin as an innocent martyr for their petitions and marches. Unfortunately, during the process of inciting these movements, they have tainted the reputations of both Martin and Zimmerman; they have also forgotten the fact that this is still a case about a poor boy who was murdered by a man who wanted to be a vigilante instead of waiting for the police to do their job. Trayvon Martin was killed by his neighborhood watchmen George Zimmerman, and their case has caused a media upheaval. The two photos above show the media’s bias as they either try to portray Martin has young and innocent or Zimmerman as an already accused criminal. AP Images PT Meme Madness JesseEby.StaffWriter Memes have been popular on Twitter, 9Gag, and apps on your smart phone. These are sarcastic Internet animations that have become an integral part of online culture and humor. Some of the most popular memes include one does not simply, success kid, unhelpful high school teacher, and condescending Willy Wonka. Let’s look at these popular memes through the lens of PTHS.
    • May 2012 A Sarcastically Sentimental Message to the Class of 2012 9 McKenzieFritz.OnlineEditor-In-Chief Well class of 2012, we’re about to burst out of ‘the Bubble’. It has taken four years, three principals, too many bad pep assemblies, and one mystery pooper (don’t even ask), but graduation day is finally in sight. As people, we’ve spent some of the most tremulous years of our lives in this high school. While I can’t personally speak for the entire class, there have been moments when PTHS has made me want to go on a Britney Spears circa 2007 rampage. (No cars were beat with an umbrella during my high school career.) From waking up at the crack of dawn on a daily basis, to eating the moderately suspicious cafeteria food, there have been some unpleasant moments. However, I now realize that despite the drama, the last four years have been thoroughly enjoyable. As a school, we’re lucky to have excellent teachers. I’ve learned a lot from them and made friends and memories that are unforgettable. Come summer we’ll all be heading in different directions, but I’m glad to have spent the last four years with you…well, most of you. I’m not that sappy. I’ll be heading off to Germany for a gap year followed by Barnard College to study English and Political Science or, as my parents lovingly say, “double majoring in unemployment.” However, I’ll always be able to look back on my memories of PT fondly (insert sad violin song here). In all seriousness, high school may not have been perfect but it has been memorable. I’m glad to have had the experience By time you read this you’ll be less than four weeks away from graduation meaning that you won’t be in school to read this, anyway. AP Images Joerg Sarbach Beating the Freshmen 15 StephanieHammell.MarketingEditor College is finally within reach for seniors and the biggest fear for most students is not the impending workload, but the freshman fifteen. Everyone has heard the warnings from previous students, but usually no one knows how to stop the pounds from packing on. However, with a few tips and healthy habits, seniors will be able to tackle this fear. The first and most important tip is to adopt healthier food habits before and after starting college. Students should avoid eating when stressed, studying, or watching TV and avoid skipping meals. By eating during these vulner- able times, students’ bodies will want to eat more and therefore cause them to overeat. Instead students should choose foods with more nutritional value such as whole grains, vegetables, fruit, lean meats, low- fat or nonfat dairy and light salad dressing. Also, students should not forget to watch portion sizes and avoid going back for seconds. To know the perfect portion size, divide the plate into four sections protein, starch, and two vegetable sections. The next healthy habit is knowing how to approach a college dining hall. Instead of thinking of food as bad or good students need to pay more AP Images Tony Dejak attention to the portion size and how often they eat certain foods. Rather than counting calories, they should concentrate on getting the nutrients their body needs by eating a variety of healthy foods. Students can vary their diets by trying new healthy foods they would usually not eat. Students should not linger in the dining halls. Since, most dining halls include a buffet the longer students stay the more likely it that they will return for more. Also, they should stock up on healthy snacks and keep them on hand and in their dorm room. It is important to exercise frequently and regularly. Some studies have found students who exercise at least three days a week were more likely to have better physical health, greater happiness, and be more productive than those students who did not exercise. Start by trying to work at least thirty minutes of an exercise activity into your daily routine. Some activities include walking, swimming, working out at the gym, jogging, a pickup game, or even attending exercise classes at a local recreation or college wellness center. Finally, the key to AP Images Larry Crowe maintaining a healthy lifestyle is getting enough sleep. Recent studies have linked a healthy weight with getting enough sleep at night. Sleep is also a great way to manage stress without prompting over eating. The recommended amount of sleep is seven to eight hours each night. To make the most of sleep, keep a regular sleeping schedule. Furthermore, students should avoid drinking caffeinated drinks in the evening and listening to loud music before bed. Gaining weight during the first year of college may occur due to being away from familiar places. But with these tips students should able to maintain a healthier lifestyle and avoid the dreaded freshmen fifteen.
    • 10 Life & Style The Price of a Bronze Glow CarlyBeck.Life&StyleEditor With prom and summer around the corner, everyone is vying for rays of sunshine to achieve their bronze glow. Although a tan has been perceived as a sign of health for years, more and more research is showing the real risks of UV radiation. The scary truth is that any color change of the skin is evidence of cell damage. While abstaining from any level of tan may not be realistic, especially for teenage girls, steps towards understanding the risk of an obsession are essential. While lying out in the sun is just as harmful as laying in an indoor sun-bed, salons can offer a tan year round making this harmful habit more alluring. Tanning beds emit both UVA and UVB rays, both of which can damage the DNA in the skin. Excessive exposure to both types of rays increase the risk of several types of skin cancer, including the most deadly, malignant melanoma. There are over 132,000 cases of malignant melanoma and over two million of other skin cancers diagnosed worldwide each year (World Health Organization). In addition to the most obvious risk, other injuries can arise from regular tanning sessions. Burns and eye damage as well as premature aging, allergic reactions, immune system suppression, and premature aging are common. If a tan is something you cannot live without, try swapping the tanning bed for an airbrush spray tan. The end result is the same yet much less of a risk. While avoiding an overload of UV exposure is important, there are also smaller steps that can be taken to improve skin health. Your skin is your body’s armor. Treating it with extreme care may be te- dious now but the benefits in the long run will be worth it. A layer of sunscreen should be applied to exposed skin daily, even when it is cloudy. Getting into a regular habit of exfoliating and moisturizing will shed dry skin cells and keep the skin silky smooth. In addition, drinking an adequate amount of water is not a bad idea either. AP Images Pedro Pedroncelli Dramatic Prom Dress Trends for 2012 MollyDoehring.Editor-inChief With Prom season in full swing, hysteria has broken out to find the perfect dress. Though the dance is quickly approaching, there is no need to panic. By following this year’s trends, there is no doubt you will look like Cinderella. Nude and blush dresses will be making a comeback in popularity again this year, and may be even trendier than last year. These dresses definitely have a romantic and somewhat vintage feel. Most feature lace, tulle, or chiffon, making them appear soft and flowy. A dramatic charcoal or silver toned necklace goes well with a pair of simple studs and a bracelet. Hair and makeup should also be soft to go along with this dress style’s feel. Branching off from last season’s high-low cut dresses are this year’s chiffon overlay style dresses. Though very similar in idea, the chiffon overlay features a cocktail-type short dress underneath a seethrough overlay of chiffon or mesh-like fabric. They have been very popular so far on the red carpet this season. With this style, girls will not have to choose whether they want a short or long dress! It’s a great choice for girls who are planning on wearing their prom dress again because they can take it to tailor to transform it into a short cocktail dress for less formal occasions. As far as jewelry goes, be bold. Since this is such a sleek and modern style dress, you have the ability to wear trendy jewelry as well. Try a chunky pair of earrings and a bunch of layering bangles. Wear your hair in a chic little bun or with a headband for extra sparkle. Since this dress is so unique, you can have fun with the accessories. Though sequins and jewels have always been an important part of the classic prom dress, this year’s bedazzled dresses take it to a whole other level. Almost every big-name designer is using large, chunky beads in geometric shapes. This is another ultra-modern look. Chandelier earrings emphasize the dramatic vibe of the dress. Makeup should feature something dramatic as well, whether it be a smokey eye or bright lip color. A volumous pony will go great with these dresses and will also show off the earrings. Finish the look with some killer platform stilettos. AP Images
    • Long Term Effects of Short Term Trends May 2012 11 EliseJoziwak.StaffWriter Trends come and go and unfortunately, some people do not notice the the long term effects of society’s current habits. From fashion to electronic trends, many have a negative long term impacts. The hottest fashions in footwear are Ugg boots and converse shoes. For the past year or two, these comfy and versatile shoes have helped dress up or down any outfit, but it is the shoe’s sole that can be harmful. Converse shoes consist of a piece of rubber with thin canvas as the sides. This provides no support for the foot, especially the arch of the foot. In addition, Ugg boots also provide no support. Therefore, by the end of the day people’s feet begin to ache and their ankles become sore. These pains could greatly affect the muscular and skeletal structure of a person’s feet as they grow older. The foot is what supports the entire body. All the strain and weight of a human is put onto their feet. Not only do they support the body, but it is almost impossible to function normally without using your feet. If a person grows up and has foot problems, it can be very harmful to them in completing day to day tasks. Uggs and Converse are great every once in awhile, but should not be the only shoes people wear. If you care this much about fashion now and do not care about its harmful effects, hopefully wearing orthopedic shoes at the age of 30 will not bug you either. It is better to fix the problem now while it is still minor. Above: Popular Ugg boots that are becoming wornand potentially harmful to wear. Electronics have weaved their way into society, and in a sense have taken over some people’s lives. Many people take their phones and laptops to bed, and some even fall asleep with their electronics still on. Statistics show that 64% of people fall asleep listening to some type of music or noise (radio.com). Sleep is a time for the brain to relax and rest, but this cannot happen if music or the TV is playing in the background. The brain is still picking up and transmitting sound waves, causing it to never fully be at rest. Your brain needs to rest so it can be fully alert and ready for the next day. If it never gets to truly relax, your brain can over exert itself causing it to function poorly. Sleeping with lights on in a bedroom also causes the brain to never fully rest. According to Readers Digest magazine, too much light around you while sleeping causes the pupil to never fully contract and rest. This can affect the muscles of the pupil to dilate and contract later on in life. Cell phones, laptops, and digital clocks with very bright faces especially tend to cause this problem. These affects can be harmful to the pupil’s muscles and wear them out or potentially damage them as well. Everything has a cause and effect; it is just a matter of deciding how intense you want the impact to be. Photo by Andi Saliszzoni KatieFinn.andCarlyBeck. Life&StyleEditors Decorating a dorm room can be a stressful time for incoming college freshmen. It is a brand new experience. With so many products available, deciding what needs to be purchased can be overwhelming. The following list of four items will be a helpful start in the craze of dorm room shopping. Remembering all of the homework, projects and social events can be tedious and sometimes impossible. To avoid forgetting an important date or assignment, invest in a white board or a chalkboard to jot down memos. Some white boards even come with a printed on calendar to further Instead of lugging all of your toiletries to the bathroom each time you shower, purchase a shower caddy to keep everything organized and ready for use. You will save yourself numerous unnecessary trips back to the dorm to retrieve your forgotten shower products. The Keurig Single Cup Coffee Maker is a new must have for a dorm room. A single serving (K-cup) of any hot drink you can think of is inserted and within a minute a steaming mug of coffee, tea, cider, or hot chocolate awaits. This coffee maker allows for a quick, personalized drink on the go. This can be purchased at a local department store such as Macy’s. With the hectic workload that comes along with college, a lap desk is another dorm room essential. The desk top comes with a padded underside, making it perfect for getting work done on a bed. Since the room will be cramped, a lap desk will give plenty of options for studying. Bed Bath & Beyond regularly stocks these in their back to school section. Photos by Carly Beck
    • Retirement Every year, PTSD must say goodbye to some of its most valuable and beloved teachers as they retire. 2012 is no exception, as seven cherished teachers will move on to retirement after the school year ends. All seven of these teachers have dedicated both their minds and hearts to PT, and it has not been unnoticed. There is no doubt that they have irrevocably changed the lives of many students during their long tenures. Throughout this issue of Smoke Signals, their illustrious and eventful careers will be on display (pages 12-13, 16-17) for you to learn more about them and remember the passion for education they have instilled in generations of students. The Next Joyous Chapter KatieDenning.Managing-Editior-in-Chief McKenzieFritz.Online-Editor-in-Chief When Ms. Hamilton graduated from PTHS in 1970, she did not realize that one day she would return to Peters for her teaching career. However, her dream job did not come into fruition until 1981, after she had already taught at Oil City Middle School, Tionesta School, Chartiers-Houston High School, and Fort Cherry High School. Although it took Hamilton a couple years to return to Peters, it did not take her nearly that long to decide that she wanted to be a teacher. “[I decided to become a teacher] through the influence of my high school teachers, Mr. Walter Boettcher in particular. I think I always knew I wanted to be a teacher, weirdly enough,” said Hamilton. Hamilton’s lifelong passion to teach has resulted in an illustrious career and priceless memories such as teaching her favorite class of AP Literature, directing plays, and, of course, sharing her favorite literature with students. Furthermore, Hamilton also enjoys keeping in touch with her previous pupils. “[I am] still keeping in touch with one of my first students, Kim Phillips Sethna. She went on to be a teacher, principal, and superintendent. We are still the best of friends after so many years,” said Hamilton. Although Hamilton’s career has been an impressive one, it is coming to an end this year as Hamilton will be entering the wonderful world of retirement. However, Hamilton is not entering retirement on a whim, she already has a plan as to how she will spend her days. “Sleep. Read. Shop. Play with my dogs. Do more volunteer work (I volunteer at the Human Society now) and definitely travel. I’m going to Germany, Austria, and Switzerland with Mr. Wilkinson and his students this summer,” explained Hamilton. However, before Hamilton leaves for the utopia of retirement, she has a final lesson she wants to leave students with. “Your life is what you make it. As Leon Uris said, ‘Tragedy is human legacy. Joy is human creation.’ Choose always to be joyous!” Photo by Allie Schlafman
    • Goodbye Leads to New Beginnings ChristineManganas.OnlineEditor-In-Chief After twenty five years in the district, starting as a substitute teacher at the middle school, Mrs. Stevenson is retiring. Although retirement is a time she has looked forward to, there are aspects of her job that she will miss greatly. “My freshmen are the sweetest little cherubs; while my juniors are my older, maturing cherubs, enjoying life,” said Stevenson. While at PTHS, Stevenson taught in the English Department. She primarily taught juniors Honors English but more recently has taught Academic English for freshmen. Stevenson served as the chair person for the VFW’s Voice of Democracy Contest where she helped students win at the local, state, and place at the national level. In the 2004-2005 school year, she was honored and awarded by the VFW with the Voice of Democracy Teacher of the Year award for her years of service. “What I will miss most are the students and staff who have become my extended family,” said Stevenson. For all of her “cherubs,” there was never a dull moment in the forty-one minutes she taught. The information taken away from each class was more than what was on the lesson plans. Each student was included and each class formed a little family. As Stevenson’s last days come into view, it is as if a small family is being broken apart. Upon retiring, she wants to take the time to straighten up her home and become more organized. With some help, she plans to accomplish this project. “I plan to get a dumpster to fill up so I can clean out my entire house,” stated Stevenson. A clean, organized house is only the first goal on her list. “I’m looking forward to spend time with my three, well soon to be four, grandchildren. I will also take trips when- ever it moves me,” said Stevenson. After all is said and done, her goal is simple: to live life. Although she has formed a family here with the students and staff, Mrs. Stevenson looks forward to what will come. The cherubs here in Peters Township thank her for her twenty-five years of unforgettable teaching. Although everything must come to an end, there always starts a new beginning, and from all the students she has taught and guided, we wish her the best of luck in what is next to come. Farewell, Mr. Dailey ShaneDazen.StaffWriter Mr. Dailey, a beloved social studies teacher, has decided to retire after spending his entire teaching career at the middle school. He began his career educating sixth and seventh graders at the old middle school in 1978. “I have been teaching for thirty-four years, and I made the decision this particular year to go out while I’m still on top,” said Mr. Dailey. “You don’t want to wait until students are putting postit notes on your back that say ‘kick me!’ I feel like I should go out while I’m still very cognizant of what is going on.” Of all the things he cherished in his time with the middle school none will be more missed than the relationships he has formed with former students, parents, and faculty he has come across. Two years ago, Dailey had open-heart surgery. Friends and family of students he had came to his home to visit him and deliver food. It was the caring nature of the people that genuinely were concerned for him that he remembers most. “Establishing relationships are the most precious things because when I get really old, I know that there will still be people contacting me and there will be tons of stories to be told. I can’t wait to hear those stories,” said Dailey. In 2009, Dailey graduated from the Trinity School of Ministry with a second master’s degree in church history. After he finishes the school year, he will embark on publishing a manuscript about an old preacher named Edwin Mendenhall who lived in the Poconos during the 1840’s. He will be the first person to ever write Mendenhall’s story. After he gets his manuscript published, he will also begin to write about a man named Dudley Ting, another preacher who lived in eastern Pennsylvania some time ago. “I love church history, and I feel like it is my calling to tell the world about these men’s stories,” stated Dailey. Thank you for all your contributions to Peters Township Middle School, the school district, and every soul you’ve touched over the last thirtyfour years. Congratulations on a great career and make sure to visit often! Photos by Molly Doehring
    • 14 People Features Donations for a Good Cause JoshGlicksman.StaffWriter   According to The Center for Disease Control and Prevention›s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network, about 1 in every 88 children is diagnosed Autism. Every year, the rate of children affected by it increases. However, what is this disease that affects so many lives?             According to the National Institutes of Health, autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is defined as a range of complex neurodevelopment disorders, characterized by social impairments, communication difficulties, and restricted, repetitive, and stereotyped patterns of behavior. It is almost five times more common among boys than among girls.   Unfortunately, scientists are still looking for a cure for the disease. Fortunately, the Interact Club helped to raise money that will be donated to help Autism research. “It’s great to get to have fun and work for a good cause at the same time,” said sophomore Clayton Wunderlich. Throughout the month of April, members of the Interact Club sat outside the cafeteria during all lunch periods. They sold items promoting Autism awareness such as bubbles, bands, and pins for just a couple of dollars. There is nothing like sporting fashion to support a great cause. “Most people think that a single purchase cannot make a difference, but any money contributed to the cause can go a long way,” said sophomore Matt Crall. In addition to the booth outside of the cafeteria, they held a walk for Autism at the high school stadium on April 21st. At the walk, there was a Chinese auction and a bake sale for a little added fun. The Interact Club appreciates everyone that donated money and that came out and to support the cause. The idea for the walk was hatched by the brain of sophomore Casey Kirwan. It took a lot of hard work to accomplish such a big event, however, with perseverance, everyone came together to create a great end product. “I heard about the idea a year or two ago and wanted to bring it to our school,” said Casey Kirwan. Photo by Taylor Cox Sophmore Alyssa Aburachis hands an Autism band to a supportive student. Creating the World One Mural at a Time CamilleBarnes.StaffWriter This is the third art mural being painted in the school’s hallways by Mrs. Kazalas’ art classes. A special thanks goes to the following students who helped in the production of the mural: McKenzie Fitzgerald, Erica Gretz, Kyle Higgins, Ben Hoskins, Shane Johnstonbaugh, Natalie Krewin, Jessica McIntosh, Lindsey Policz, Ryan Spangenberg, Carla Buzzatto, Allison Resnik, and Anna Zerkle.
    • Extra Classmates Around PTHS May 2011 15 CamilleBarnes.StaffWriter Remember Life Size Barbie? Honors ceramic students at PTHS have created life size saran wrap sculptures that have been installed throughout the school. The students recently completed a unit about installation/eco/found art. “Installation art is art that is installed because it is so large. Eco/found art is art that is made from materials that are free or in abundance,” said Honors Ceramics teacher Ms. DeGiovanni. As a conclusion of the unit, the students cre- ated these life size sculptures made of saran wrap. “My favorite part was “wrapping each other in saran wrap,” said senior Sadie Martinez. The idea is to have the sculptures be installed around the school to act as if they were students. Keep an eye out for these extra students in your classrooms or as you walk through the hallways. A saran wrap sculpture is installed in the Principal’s office and clothed to imitate a true student. The Way to Go in May LydiaMcCall.StaffWriter As the months of the school year fly by, so does each students attention span. Let’s be honest, our attention span left a long time ago. With the weather getting warmer and the sun finally making an appearance, it is hard to find time to do all that lousy homework. Most students, no matter the grade, have already experienced the beginning symptoms of “Senioritis” and the fact is the illness is only getting worse. Even with the promise of summer, it is important to stay on task with grades and everyday activities that need to get done. One way to keep focused is keeping a journal, otherwise known as a goal setting journal. No, not a diary boys, but a scheduled journal of all the things work or school related that need to be attended to. It is time to dig up that dusty Peters Township High School Planner. If you want to get fancy, list items according to importance. For example, list the easiest tasks first so you can get them out of the way to focus on the more difficult tasks later. In the end, the satisfaction of scratching off a task you have completed is very self rewarding. That brings me to my next tip. We all like rewards, right? Therefore, why not treat yourself to one after you have completed something important? Suppose you got an A in math class, that’s a reason to treat yourself to an item you have wanted to buy or maybe you would like to treat yourself to dinner one night. You are more likely to complete a task if you know there is a light at the end of the tunnel, am I right? Now there are also more obvious helpful hints. For example, turn off your distractions! Yes, that means the television, computer and even your cell phone. Turning off these oh-soimportant items can be devastating but it is a definite way to finish homework or chores and eliminate distractions. You can also limit your time on tasks. Do not spend five hours on one assignment and not finish any of your other homework. Set a deadline for yourself and stick to it. When you have promised a deadline to yourself, you are more likely to get it done. Finishing out the school year organized and efficient will end the year with a bang. Once school is over, there will finally be more time for the really important things- like tanning and sleeping. FBLA Members Qualifies for Nationals PaigeHannah.GuestWriter During the third week of April, the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) traveled to the sweetest place on Earth, Hershey PA, for the FBLA State Leadership Conference. Students participated in workshops and competed in individual and team events. All of the members were very successful, and 16 students placed in the top ten for their categories. Nick Roberts, Grace Brandstetter, and Paige Hannah qualified for the National Leadership Conference. Roberts placed first in the Business Math category and Brandstetter and Hannah placed second in the Global Business category, and all three will be representing PTHS in San Antonio, Texas at the national competition at the end of June. Photos by Paige Hannah
    • Time to Smell the Roses LindseyMcCay.StaffWriter After being a gym teacher for 36 years at Peters Township High School, Mrs. Rose has decided to hang up her sneakers and retire. Rose began to pursue this career after being inspired by her junior high gym teacher’s progressive take on physical education. However, it was not until her junior year of high school she officially decided to become a physical education teacher. Rose had considered a few other teaching positions, such as music, but knew physical education was the job for her. “I loved physical activity and teaching, so why not put both together? I get to interact with students in a more casual environment,” said Rose. She has enjoyed everything about her career at Peters. She loved offering a wide variety of classes varying from the more rigorous gym activities to the most relaxing like yoga. Her favorite subjects to teach to students were rock climbing and canoeing. Both are great outdoor physical activities that had a sense of adventure to them. The climbing wall gave Rose her best memories from teaching, because she helped a visually impaired student and a handicapped student over the wall. She was able to get them to the top of the wall. It was fulfilling for her to help the students overcome their disabilities and be a part of gym class like everyone else. If given the chance to relive her life, Rose knows she would not have done anything differently. She loved the fulfillment that teaching physical education has given her. “I enjoyed working with teenagers (really!), and I loved exposing them to adventure education. My pride and joy was bringing adventure education to PTHS,” stated Rose. Rose cannot wait to begin her retirement. She plans to spend at least the next two years living in her motor home with her husband. During this motor home expedition, Rose will be captain as her husband bikes across the country. She found fulfillment in her career at the high school, but ultimately felt that it was her time to leave. “I decided it was time to graduate and go out to the real world and play,” said Rose. Goodbye to a Great Mentor Photo by Naomi Burke AmandaMoore.NewsEditor Mrs. Kathleen Sekley is mainly known as the Information Technology teacher who is an expert in Excel Spreadsheets and Word documents. However, she was also the head of the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) club for many years. What people do not know is what she did to get to the position of respect she has now. After high school, she went to the University of Pittsburgh for her undergraduate in business and then went to teach at Connellsville Area High School. When she had her first of two sons, she decided to take a fifteen year maternity leave instead of a fifteen month one. While she was taking care of her sons, she got her masters in technology and business at Penn State. Once the boys were grown, she became a software trainer and traveled a lot. She eventually decided to become a teacher again and ended up at PTHS in 1993. She immediately started teaching the Information Technology class (previously known as Computer Based Applications) and became involved in FBLA. She has thrived here both as a teacher and the head of FBLA for the past nineteen years. As a teacher, her students have had much success, but she has impacted the students involved in FBLA the most. While most high schools have five or six students qualifying for a chance to compete at the state level, this year there were a total of forty three students from PTHS who qualified. This is a huge accomplishment in itself, but what is more impressive is that out of hundreds of students in Pennsylvania, 16 made top ten in their events and eight of them qualified for a chance to compete in the national level at Austin, Texas this summer. “Having so many students have this much success is a great way to end my career,” said Sekley. Looking back on her career here, the FBLA conferences were one of her favorite parts. “There is nothing more rewarding than seeing a look of pride and accomplishment on the students faces when they win,” Stated Sekley. During retirement, she has four goals. She wants to spend more time with her husband and two sons, get into better shape, volunteer in her community and church, and do something she has been dreaming of since she was a little girl: get a grand piano and take piano lessons. Her legacy will be long lasting and impactful. The amount of respect she received from students and FBLA she kept will forever be ingrained in the PTHS way of life and she will be sorely missed. Photo by Allie Schlafman
    • Farewell, Mrs. Morriston JennaTaimuty.StaffWriter Mrs. Morriston has been a part of PTHS since 1978. Yes, you read that correctly. During her impressive tenure, she has accomplished many things and she will surely be missed. When first joining the PTHS staff, Morriston was an English teacher and worked with her class to create the first issue of the Smoke Signals Newspaper. Without Mrs. Morriston, you would not be receiving the news magazine today. She was also the yearbook advisor or co-advisor for about a dozen years. From there, she went on to become the librarian. She now is the Graduation Project Teacher and works on technology integration with the teachers. “I’ve been so fortunate to have fantastic teachers like Mrs. Boni, Mrs. Sitler and Ms. Myers take my programs to higher levels after I’ve left,” said Morriston. Morriston is extremely happy to have had great administrators who have encouraged her and given her the trust to develop the courses she did. Before she was at PTHS, Morriston attended college at the University of Pittsburgh. She received a Bachelor’s Degree in Education and English and a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science. Being a Class Marshall and number one in her school of education (Pitt divides valedictorian by majors), Morriston was often questioned on why she wanted to become a teacher and not something else. “I am willing to work hard and that’s how I got to be number one. I became a teacher because teaching is important and money is less important,” stated Morriston. Morriston, a very on-the-go person, looks forward to resting and exercising so she can keep as busy as she was while working. She plans to read all the books she never had the chance to read. Since she enjoys traveling, Morriston expects to do a bit of that as well. She also says she would not be surprised if she ends up working somewhere again. As Morriston hears about her students’ college plans, she is reminded that the role of women in society has grown and changed. Her roommate in college was the only female industrial engineer in her class. In the early 1970’s only 11% of women went to college but over 30% of the males did. Today the percentage of women is higher than the percentage of males in that category. “The world can’t afford to let any group of people waste their talents so the progress women have made is a great step down a path toward equality. Retiring is a good time to contemplate positive changes and to help ensure more positive changes in the future,” stated Morriston. Photo by Allie Schlafman Sprowls Rides to New Horizons KatieFinn.Life&StyleEditor “Being a teacher I have had the opportunity to be a role model to thousands of students. I have tried to treat others with respect and share the importance of being a person who treats others with the value and worth they deserve,” said Mrs. Suzette Sprowls. After sixteen years of devoted teaching at PTHS, Mrs. Sprowls, the child development teacher, will be retiring. From freshmen to seniors, Sprowls has taught students the essential information on child care and childhood education. Sprowls graduated from Mansfield University with a degree in Economics and later studied at California University of Pennsylvania to earn a master’s degree in education. She has worked with every age of children, from newborns to college students. Before teaching at PTHS, Sprowls founded a preschool, taught at a private Christian school, and was the director of an on-site preschool program. Here at PTHS, Sprowls taught two Child Development courses, with Child Development II being her favorite. “I delight in teaching Child Development II and running the lab preschool program. I have had the joy of meeting such darling three, four and five year olds. What a privilege it has been,” said Sprowls. “One memorable experience is of a little three year old. His mom had warned me that when he gets angry he rips off all of his clothes. Sure enough in a burst of anger he was nude quicker than I could get to him.” Departing from the students and children will be a monumental change in her life, but Sprowls is looking forward to retirement and the different lifestyle it has in store for her. She and her husband plan on riding their Harley Trike (motorcycle) to discover new, unknown places. She is looking forward to spending more time with him. “Thank you to all the students who have helped mold me to be calmer, more appreciative, and more in love with life itself,” said Sprowls. Photo by Naomi Burke
    • 18 Entertainent Summertime boredom is a problem for high school students. The fun outdoor times with friends and family tend to get lost in the world of video games, movies, and music. Summer camps used to be the highlights of the summer for young people, but now they have become less popular. Summer camps like Camp Kon-o-Kwee are a unique chance to make lifelong friends and have unbelievable experiences. Since 1926, Camp Kon-o- Kwee has taught boys and girls from the ages of seven to seventeen the four principles of Belonging, Adventure, Ac- Gotta See It to Believe It Andrea.Salizzoni.StaffWriter complishment, and Leadership. “Teens should go to summer camp because it helps them gain independence, confidence, self- discovery, and courage,” stated camp director Zach Hoffman. Since 1926, Camp Kon-o- Kwee has taught boys and girls from the ages of seven to seventeen the four principles of Belonging, Adventure, Accomplishment, and Leadership. High school students, teens may be worried that attending camp makes them “uncool” or that it is too late. Not only does Camp Kon-o- Kwee frown upon judging others, but it is nonexistent there; welcoming people of different ethnicities, age and gender. “Summer camp is the best way to truly find yourself, and it makes you realize you shouldn’t be anything other than yourself,” stated Hoffman. Teens have unique opportunities to go on amazing off-camp trips. The “classic” trip is the Vagabond Hike. This thirty-two mile hike on the Laurel highlands trail begins at Donegal, PA and brings campers, accompanied by staff members, to Ohiopyle State Park. A more exclusive opportunity is the Kinzua Canoe Trip. This trip provides the “true camp experience” by canoeing ten to fifteen miles a day on the Allegheny River. Campers total approximately 107 miles by the end of this two week journey. During this trip, campers find their own camp, cook their own food, and “shower” in the river. This truly is a “bucket- list” kind of experience. Young people always leave camp gaining experience in building fires, making friends, swimming, or playing games. These activities allow campers to grow and gain a sense of personal accomplishment. “There are no expectations; you may come in shy and alone, but leave with unforgettable experiences and gain lifelong friends,” stated Hoffman. Fortunately, leadership opportunities are offered for juniors and seniors even if they have not attended Kono- Kwee before. Eligibility for staff begins at age sixteen, when teens can apply to be a C.I.T. (Counselor in Training) and can volunteer to be a new staff member for the following summer. Applicants stay at the camp for a weekend in spring for interviews and evaluations. After two summers of going through the C.I.T. program, teens can apply for the counselor job. Most C.I.T.’s return for following summers. Taking a Plunge: America’s Top Water parks Memorial Day weekend is on its way, which means that pools and water parks everywhere are opening. Sandcastle is the ‘Burgh’s only water park, and let’s face it, Sandcastle is only fun about one trip a summer. Now, it’s time to take a plunge and visit some of America’s top water parks. Each year, a group of theme and water park enthusiasts set out on a journey to find the best of the best in the amusement industry across the globe. These are the Golden Ticket Awards. Consistently winning the Golden Ticket Award for best water park in the world, Schlitterbahn in New Braunfels, Texas takes the prize. Schlitterbahn is filled with nineteen tube and body slides, and each one gives riders a different taste of thrills. For those who like to relax, Schlitterbahn has ten pools and multiple lazy rivers mixed in throughout the park. Schlitterbahn’s newest addition is the world’s longest water ride, a tube ride called The Falls, a 3,600 foot long river that takes you through a crazy course of waterfalls, rapids, and waves. MadisonMincone.SportsEditor America’s largest water park is in…Wisconsin? Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin, is the location of Noah’s Ark that features thirteen slides. Among the thirteen slides is the first looping waterslide ever, the Scorpion’s Tail. The Scorpion’s Tail features a launch chamber that you stand in, and after a countdown the floor drops out. This sends you plummeting down a speed slide-like hill into the tilted loop. But if thrills are not your style, Noah’s Ark also features two wave pools and two rivers. Disney takes paradise to a whole new level with their two water parks. Both parks were in the top five for golden ticket winners; Blizzard Beach came in second and Typhoon Lagoon in fourth. The snow resort themed water park of Blizzard Beach has one of the world’s tallest and fastest freefalling body slides, the Summit Plummet. The Summit Plummet is on top of Mount Gushmore and soars above the park at 120 feet. If this massive slide is too much for you, the six other body and tube slides are just as fun but less intimidating. Ty- phoon Lagoon is a water park that is themed like a hurricanedestroyed island paradise that, unlike the other water parks, stars the one of the world’s largest wave pools. The Surf Pool is the center of the water park, with huge tidal waves in the deep end and a play area for kids in the shallows. Typhoon Lagoon also has some awesome slides too, one of which is the Crush ‘n’ Gusher, an ominously named water coaster, and five other slides. It also has a lazy river that goes the entire way around the park and a shark reef where you can scuba dive with real sharks. Denver, Colorado’s Water World is probably the most creative water park yet. Water World has seven themed areas and five of them have slides. The eleven slides in the park have the most variety out of all of the other water parks; each slide has a theme relating to the section of the park that it’s in. Each slide has its own aspect of thrill; The Bermuda Triangle is a covered underground speed slide. The Voyage to The Center of The Earth takes you on an animatronic journey into the dark depths of the Earth. Deciding to spend the day, or a couple days, at Water World will certainly keep you entertained. If you are searching for thrills, or you just want to get out of the bubble for a couple days, America’s top water parks will certainly give you something to rave about. Just remember to hold onto your suits…seriously. A rider heads down the Summit Plummet at Blizzard Beach in Walt Disney World. AP Images Phelan M. Ebenhack
    • Mike Kronket’s iPod Playlist May 2012 19 The Entertainment Must List LauraPurkey.Staff Writer 1. The Story of Us-Taylor Swift 2. Something bout a Truck-Kip Moore 3. Mine-Taylor Swift 4. Crazy Girl-Eli Young Band 5. Call Me Maybe-Carly Rae Jepsen Book Reviews: Delirium & Silent Witness Season 3 of The Vampire Diaries: After the CW show’s first two great seasons, the show finally hit it out of the park with their third season. Every week, the creators deliver insane supernatural drama and always leave with a climatic twist. The new characters Klaus and Rebekah make being bad seem oh so good. Also, it does not hurt that no actor on the show is remotely bad looking. After vampires got such a bad rap, this show makes them cool AP Images Dan Steinberg again. Young the Giant: After their first big-time debut at the VMA’s in August, the alternative rock band has been gaining fans. Their mesmerizing chords, along with lead singer Sameer Gadhia’s unique vocals and François Comtois’ excellent percussion make them the freshest band in alt-rock since Third Eye Blind. They’re currently on tour, and hit Stage AE on April 20th. Best songs on their self-titled album are “I Got,” “Cough Syrup,” and “12 Fingers.” Fathead’s: This restaurant located in the Southside (which originally started off as Bighead’s in Dormont) is a great place to go. It combines a nice location with superb food. The best choices on the menu include a monster-sized sandwich called the KatieFinn.Life&StyleEditor “Headwich”, and wings with tons of different sauce choices. Better Delirium: quitted and the real murderer is than Primanti’s? Definitely. If you were a fan of the found, he leaves behind his home Dave Matthews Band at First Niagra Pavilion: Hunger Games, you will defi- and travels to his dream college, nitely like Delirium by Lauren Harvard, to study for a law de- DMB hits the First Niagra Pavilion in Burgettstown July 13th and Oliver. This futuristic read pulls gree. Twenty-eight years later, 14th. That’s two opportunities to see one of the best bands of all you into the world of seventeen Tony receives a call from his best time. 2012 marks the bands 21st anniversary. Hopefully, “The year old Lena Holloway and friend’s wife begging for him to Space Between” you and the stage is not far and no one will “Crash” the complications involving the represent her husband in a mur- into each other. I bet the water there will be fine to drink as well. love of her life, Alex. The main der trial taking place in his own (Sorry for the bad play on words.) complication of the book con- hometown. Tony returns back Marley: Not Marley & Me—better. The cerns the government and its to Lake City after years of trydocumentary released April 20th captures idea that love is a disease that ing to put his past behind him. the life of the amazing Bob Marley and must be cured. Lena is set to He is forced to struggle through the legacy he has left behind. The movie be cured of the disease at the the memories of Alison’s death as promises unheard songs and unseen footend of the summer, but upon unbelievable, life altering secrets age. Besides this, the film illustrates the meeting Alex she finds herself are unearthed and he realizes his famous Rastafarian in a passionate, raw letting the “disease” of love cap- life at seventeen was not what it way; and shows a man who lived for life— ture her. As the summer goes seemed. on, Lena realizes she does not not for material riches. want to be cured and wishes to Boston Accents: British accents have be with Alex forever. However, been swooned over too long. The Boston what will she have to do avoid drawl is by far cuter. Some famous greats with this accent include the laws of her government? the Kennedys, Ben Affleck, Marky Mark, and Joey Massone from Silent Witness: The Voice. Silent Witness by 2012 Cannes Film Festival: Probably the biggest film Richard North Patterson is a celebration there is--the Cannes Film Festival keeps growing. Peonovel that surprises readers ple gather in Cannes, France to watch some of the recent year’s best up to the last word. After sevindie, foreign, and short films. Awards are given in categories such enteen year old Tony Lord was as Sci-Fi and LGBT. If you cannot make it cross country, you can wrongly accused of the murder follow online and watch with some of movie’s most talented stars. of his girlfriend, Alison TayMust-see: the striking documentary Prison Through Tomorrow’s lor, he could not wait to escape Eyes. the skeptic eyes of the citizens Photo by Katie Finn AP Images Collin Reid of Lake City. Once Tony is ac-
    • 20 News Does Christina Cho Tar and Feather PETA? JennaTaimuty.StaffWriter Before everyone fell in love with the extremely attractive Hunger Games character, Peeta, the only PETA known was the largest animal rights organization in the world. (People for the Ethical Treatments of Animals) PETA activist, Christina Cho, has recently sparked controversy over an incident in which she flour bombed the ohso-famous Kim Kardashian while she was walking the red carpet at a red carpet event. Cho did this because Kim was supposedly seen recently wearing fur. As seen on one of the past episodes of Keeping Up with the Kardashians, Khloe posed naked for PETA and met with a top-ranked senior communications Manager Michelle Cho, Christina’s sister. Outraged over her sister’s attack, Khloe Kardashian took to her blog stating, “I’ve been a vocal supporter of PETA for a long time, but I have also been very vocal about anti-bullying, so this was a huge disappointment for me. As you all know, I don’t condone violence and bullying and what happened last Thursday was just that. I am absolutely disgusted by their [PETA activist’s] behavior.” Khloe has since cut ties with the organization. Kim was reportedly debating whether or not to press charges as she does not want anyone to think that this type of behavior is acceptable. A PETA spokesperson released a statement saying that PETA will pay any legal fines they may receive due to the actions of the Christina Cho. However, before Cho was a flour bomber, she was a stage jumper. At a women’s conference, Cho jumped the stage and grabbed the microphone out of designer Donna Karan’s hands. She began to rant about the use of fur in fashion. After ruining the event, PETA congratulated Cho with an award to celebrate her actions. We get it, people should not wear fur and it should be left to the animals themselves, but has Christina Cho taken the name activist to a whole new level? AP Images Shizuo Kambayashi AP Images Charles Sykes AP Images Vincent Thian Making Your First Ballot Count JillianEby.LayoutStaff For many seniors turning eighteen brings many exciting and new opportunities into their lives. However, the most important may arguably be the right to vote. With the upcoming election this November, new registered voters have the responsibility of picking which candidate best suits their beliefs. Students should not be swayed by the opinions of others, but should find out what they qualities they desire in a president. So the question remains: what makes a good president? It is hard to not judge our candidates based on their appearance or on the few clips seen occasionally on the news. The most important part is to avoid voting blindly, meaning not picking a candidate based solely on their political party. First time voters should research their vote by following the news and reading about the candidates. The same goes for evaluating our current president, up for re-election. Determining how our president has run the country the past four years helps voters decide whether to re-elect the president or to turn to a new candidate. Furthermore, reading opinions from both the left and right gives a perspective not given from the media Being an adult means making adult decisions, which includes the responsibility as a citizen to vote. Voting is not as hard or as complicated as it might seem. The easiest way to register is right here in the guidance office. If you are eighteen, register now. You must be registered by October in order to be able to vote in the November election. New voters will receive your voter registration card in the mail and will be put on the list at your specific voting location. The voting location is determined on where you live, and not everyone in Peters votes at the same place. Also consider if you go away for college to request an absentee ballot that you can mail in if unable to vote at your assigned location. Make sure to get out on November 6th and exercise the right to vote!
    • Kony, Famous For What? JennaTaimuty.StaffWriter Kony 2012: Everyone recognizes those words and what they mean, but do they actually know what the Kony campaign is about? Grant Oyston discovered more than meets the eye when watching the Kony 2012 video. Most people have seen the “Kony 2012” video on YouTube. The creator, Jason Russell, provides facts about what Kony is doing to the children in Uganda and—in a way—tears at your heartstrings in order to get your money for the campaign. However, he does not provide any actual information. If you have watched television or read an article online lately, Grant Oyston has dedicated multiple blog posts on his blog visiblechildren.tumblr.com to the Kony 2012 Invisible Children group. Oyston is a college student at Acadia University in Novia Scotia, Canada who began researching the Kony 2012 group and decided that the world should know where all the money is really going. Students had the chance to chat via Skype with Oyston on Monday, March 19. This opportunity became available because Ms. Myers knows Oyston through another organization in which she is currently involved. He answered questions from various students and talked about what he has gone through since his blog was posted. He explained that he agrees Kony is “an evil man,” but he thinks that the message Invisible Children sends is that “anybody can change the world, and it’s easy.” Oyston stressed that he believes otherwise. “Anyone can change the world, and it’s difficult,” he said. “But you should do it anyway.” Oyston blogged that he strongly opposes Invisible Children. He goes on to say that the organization claims that it is nonprofit, meaning that the profits and expenses are public. Last year, the organization spent $8,676,614. Oyston’s blog states that thirty-seven percent of their budget goes directly to central African-related programs, about twenty percent goes to salaries and overhead, and the remaining fortythree percent goes to our awareness programs. Which for most organizations, is the other way around. It also states that the truth about Invisible Children is that they are not an aid organization, and they don’t intend to be. People think it is delivering shoes or food but it is an advocacy and awareness organization. Since his post, Oyston was offered to be flown to Uganda with Angelina Jolie to see what is happening. He declined in knowing that the money used to fly him out and pay for all of his expenses would be paid for by the organization, and that is not okay with him. Photo By: Ms. Blackhurst Students talk with Grant Oyston, an activist who is seperating the rumours from the facts about Joseph Kony. May 2012 21 What in the World? ValerieGobao.LayoutEditor-in-Chief From the crème filled Cadbury’s to the colorful, hard boiled variety, eggs are an integral part of our spring experience here in the Unites States. But, we’re not unique; the Chinese also participate in this spring “egg-session.” However, the citizens of Dongyang dye their eggs a little differently. For a springtime snack, they prepare a delicacy called “virgin boy eggs,” which are chicken eggs cooked in the urine of pre-pubescent boys. For anyone interested in recreating the recipe, the eggs are soaked and boiled in urine (collected from local schools) for an entire day to obtain the “popular fresh and salty taste.” Talk about a treat! According to street vendors, this recipe has been passed down for centuries as a body-restoring remedy; apparently, the eggs have health benefits ranging from an increase in energy to the prevention of aches and heat stroke.  However, as much as I enjoy adventurous eating, I’ll have to side with the sanitary concerns of Chinese medical officials. Stay away from yellow eggs in the future, folks.                 It’s the end of the world as we know it! Doomsday, aka December 21, 2012, is rapidly approaching. But luckily, a commune outside the French village of Bugarach knows exactly how to survive this impending apocalypse; they’ll just hitch a ride on an alien ship. Yes, that’s right; in the ultimate new age conspiracy theory, these hippies believe that an “extraterrestrial Noah’s Ark” is parked within a nearby mountain, the Pic de Bugarach, and will whisk them away to safety. This odd belief is rooted in the mountain’s strange, upside down appearance, which has fascinated everyone from Jules Verne to the Nazis throughout history. However, it is now causing trouble for the normal citizens of the area, who are peeved by their new neighbors. Perhaps influenced by the mountain’s “unique magnetic waves,” the new agers have been spotted hiking naked and performing strange rites, and are expected to later participate in mass, ritualistic suicides. They’d have better luck stocking up and hiding bomb shelters; at least they’d survive the disappointment. Holy impersonator, Batman! In a creative attempt to stop crime, the police of Taubate, Brazil, have hired a retired officer, Andre Luiz Pinheiro, to patrol the streets in a full Batman costume. They’re not a bunch of jokers, either; besides being a public face for the police, Pinheiro’s Batman will also act as a tool “to combat crimes such as murder and drug trafficking which have increased” in the town in recent years. While it’s unknown if this venture will succeed, it’s hoped to at least raise awareness of crime prevention in the area. So even if this Batman isn’t decked out with a bat-signal, a bat-mobile, Batarangs, and a sidekick, this remains the most awesome idea in the history of crime fighting. I just hope that DC Comics doesn’t get them with a copyright violation.
    • Mixed Art These student pieces from the wide variety of PT electives show the skills of artists and photographers alike. From painting murals to creating art through photoshop, students exhibit their remarkable expertise by creating unique and beautiful pieces. Here are just a few examples of the talent found in the elective classes. Dillon Devine, 12 Kailyn Schmidt, 11 Emily Koch, 11 Layout Design by Denée Renz Emily Corrigan, 11 Rachel Martin, 12 and Kate Kozlowski, 12 Reid Elattrache, 12 Kristina Carbonara, 11
    • Rachel Rex, 10 Gretchen Brandstetter, 12 Lizzie Keller, 12 Jesse Borne, 10 Sadie Martinez, 12 Christine Gaab, 11 Matt Fick, 11 Taylor Robinson, 12
    • What motivates you to come to school? “The end of the year literature units” Austin Chappell “I do it for the street cred” “Graduation is in less than a month” Chrissy Lampert “School cookies” Mark Murphy “Graduation” “Lots of good things to look forward to” “The light at the end of the tunnel” Mr. Lawrence “Students get excited and it’s funny to watch” Mariah Minarcin Rachel Hobbs Justin Magnotti “I have to drive my friends to school” Maddie Estep Hannah Squeglia “Being with friends” “I kind of have to” Jon Colosimo “Being with friends” “We graduate” Mr. Barney Mrs. Groninger Teachers Marah Borsch Mrs. Vollmer “I come because I have to” Aaron McDonough Seniors Brooke Smith “I have to get good grades” “The chocolate muffins” “Coming to do the Morning Announcements” Mr. Milchovich Tim Warne Juniors “So I don’t have to sit at home all day and to get into college” Andy Allen “It’s illegal if I don’t” Matt Crall Kayla Minarcin Sophomores Marissa Mullett “To get into a good college and get a good job” Sean Harrison “To get a good education and to make a good life ” “Seeing my friends” “In order to be in sports, you have to be here at least half the day” “May as well finish it” Brady Cochrane Natalie Smith Freshmen “June”