UPDATE: All performances of the WHS production have been cancelled and are hoping to reschedule. Stay tuned for more information.
by: Serf Piedrasanta
With the recent outbreak of COVID-19 or the CoronaVirus, a lot of precautions are being taken. A state of emergency has been announced in Connecticut by governor Ned Lamont, and panic is large as of right now. The CIAC (Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference) has cancelled all winter sports that have currently been going on, and most activities are cancelled as well.
However, Wethersfield High School’s 2020 production of “The Addams Family” is still running. The superintendent has made precautions, and only 100 people are allowed to attend each show to lower the risk of infection.
This impacts the show in many different ways, however. While the show is still on, it has been decided that three extra shows are available to the public. There is a Thursday dress rehearsal available for parents of those in the cast, with a limit of 2 people per student. There is also a Saturday matinee added in the afternoon at 1:00pm, as well as a Monday evening show being planned.
Ticket sales are currently closed, as online ticket sales reached over 500 people before the 100 person cap was announced. It is very unlikely that any tickets will open up, but there will be door sales if the 100 person maximum is not met for a show.
This is affecting every single cast member and has added an extra layer of stress, but we will update as we have more information as it becomes available.
By: Alexis Almada and Andre Jorge
“Come to paint night and flex your painting muscles” -John Martin
Wethersfield High School’s National Art Honor Society (NAHS) will be hosting its fourth paint night, “Leap Into Spring” on Thursday, February 27th. Paint night will take place in the art rooms located near the pool entrance. No painting experience is required!
The NAHS has been selling tickets ($7 ea.) since February 10th, and will continue selling at the door. The event starts promptly at 6pm and ends around 8pm. To start off the night, guests will have the opportunity to sit in one of the two art rooms and learn to paint a spring themed canvas, instructed by two of the NAHS members.
Instructing this year’s spring paint night will be WHS seniors Alexis Almada (room 22) and Kiara Lazu (room 20). Both instructors will be teaching how to paint the same image. This will be their second time instructing paint night!
The schedule for the night is as follows, painting is taught from 6pm-7pm and then a quick intermission for pizza and other refreshments will be served from 7pm-7:30pm. After that, everyone will return to painting and deserts will be handed out.
Although Alexis and Kiara will be teaching everyone how to make a spring painting, guests are not required to follow along. If you would like, you can paint whatever you want. All supplies will be provided. In each room, painting jockeys will be replacing paint waters, paper towels, and paint as needed.
Everyone is welcome to join us for paint night! It’s a really fun event and everyone is encouraged to come. Please come out and help support the NAHS.
by: Serf Piedrasanta
Wethersfield High School’s very own drama club has been rehearsing for their spring production of The Addams Family. Students in the musical started their rehearsals in January, and they continue weekly until March, where they perform for three days.
What is The Addams Family? It is a musical following the iconic clan of misfits as they have to handle change.
The plot surrounds the daughter of Gomez and Morticia Addams, Wednesday Addams, as she handles her new relationship with a “normal” person.
What is a typical week like for these students? We asked two students who have lead roles in the musical, Zane Tinker and Hailey Baranowski, about what they go through each week.
Hailey Baranowski, class of 2020, was asked about what her role of Wednesday Addams and her contributions to the overall story of the show.
“Wednesday is this 17 year old girl and she has this fiance her parents never met and a lot of the story is based around the conflict of Wednesday keeping her marriage a secret from her mother.”
Uncle Fester acts as a narrator of sorts, as he is the only character that speaks directly to the audience and summarizes small parts of the show. We asked Zane Tinker, class of 2020, about what Fester does for the show.
He said, “Uncle Fester is the weird uncle who simultaneously acts as the narrator of sorts. He talks to the audience and keeps them updated on what’s going on.”
“I spend about 20 hours a week, especially at the beginning when you’re just learning all the songs and dances” Baranowski said about how much time a week they spend practicing.
All this time spent in school rehearsing takes a toll on their lives outside of school, and when we asked Zane, he said, “Oh it’s rough, especially when I have another job. I have zero free time,” showing how busy these performers are each and every week.
“I really only can spend time with other people who are in the musical.” Baranowski said when asked how exactly this huge time commitment affects her life. This being said, the leads all interact frequently, with members of one group or family being on stage with each other a lot more.
But sometimes, outside relationships can make some scenes a bit awkward for the performers. “Getting comfortable on the stage with everyone while saying your lines is very important.”
Hailey said when asked about chemistry on stage, but it isn’t as bad as it sounds.
“It’s like hydrogen and oxygen. It depends on the people though, and those who tend to stay more focused bounce off each other a lot better than those who don’t,” Zane said when questioned on who on stage bounces off one another well. This shows that when these students put in the effort and focus, they perform a lot better, and get more done.
WHS’ musical productions are not your typical high school production. Not only do they try to stick to Broadway levels of formality with complicated harmonies and more singing parts then typical, there are also things that make these productions important to the performers.
There are numerous unique traditions special to the high school that make these productions special, and it shows the bond that these students have with one another. “Before we go on stage and before performance,s we all sing songs in a circle and everyone cries on the last day.” Baranowski said when asked about what traditions WHS has that aren’t seen anywhere else.
The Addams Family is a drastically different show than last year's production of Mary Poppins. When asked about how this show is going to stand out, Zane said “I think the songs and the show is a lot funnier than Mary Poppins, so it’s going to be a fun show to watch.”
The Addams Family is a lot more contemporary than last year’s production, and people who want a more comedic and brash show should definitely be sure to get tickets for a showing.
by: Samuel Garcia and Jordan Hickey
Wethersfield High School has so many amazing clubs that people don’t even know we have. One of many is JETS club.
We wanted to learn more about what JETS is and what is consisted in this club. We tried to find someone who had first-hand experience with JETS club and who would be better to interview than captain of JETS club. First, let's talk about what JETS is.
JETS stands for Junior Engineering Technical Society. JETS is an engineering team, where a group of students makes devices for people who can’t perform the daily maneuvers they need everyday.
Who is eligible to join? Any student who is interested in hands on building, willing to work for those in need is eligible.
Where do you go if you want to join? Students willing to participate will typically meet in room 24 on the west side of the school with Mr. Sikora. JETS club meets every week on Monday after school.
Why is JETS a good club to get involved in? We asked JETS captain Rachel Gopaul and she said, “JETS is a great club because it teaches students how anyone can help those who are in need and can’t help themselves.”
Another thing Rachel mentioned was, “JETS is a great opportunity for students to work with tools in the woodshop, learn how to 3D print, and lastly work with something that can help those who aren’t able to complete certain activities.”
Last year, our JETS team competed in the competition and tried to help a man named Mooch. Mooch isn’t able to use his hands and must be remained in a chair. Mooch’s job was to pack binder clips in boxes.
The JETS team wanted to develop a way to make it easier for him to do his job. The JETS team created a machine that attaches to Mooch’s head so he could push the clips in the box. This was able to help him perform his job and was a great help!
This year, the team is trying to come back stronger than ever. This year, they have split into groups to work on separate projects. This year they have one group 3D printing a tray for someone to eat due to the fact that his hands don’t work. Another group is working on putting chains in earplug cases used in the military.
JETS club is working on a lot of great projects for a lot of great people so if this sounds like something you would be interested in, make sure to talk to Mr. Sikora in room 24 after school to join the club.
by: Amanda Carmel & Joseph Cassineri
History teacher John Sand is known for his love of travel. He’s ventured with students to destinations like Costa Rica and Belize, just to name a few. With his 2021 trip yet to be planned, Mr. Sand and two students have joined forces to form the new Cultural Exchange and Travel Club, with heavy emphasis on the cultural exchange part.
“We’re interested in cultural exchanges—we’re interested in when we go abroad, meeting with kids from other countries, and exchanging cultures that way,” Mr. Sand said.
Sand helped organize the club to gain input from students on, as Sand puts it, “where they want to go, and what they want to do.”
The direct input of the student body is something he hopes will drive future trips tailored to the passions of a group of students, whether it be traveling for fun, to see history, or to make a difference in the world community. Sand is perhaps one of the biggest proponents of travel in our WHS community, and we asked why he believes it’s so important.
“It increases your understanding that there’s a great big world out there, other than out little old Wethersfield High School” he said, “It promotes cultural awareness, so that you understand and appreciate the differences in people, rather than being ignorant to them.”
Beyond traveling the globe, Sand mentioned his interest in experiencing other cultures locally.
“We have different cultures here at our high school, there’s other cultures at other high schools. Its kinda cool to meet each other and find some common ground.”
The club will meet once a month in room 112. If you want to have a say in our school’s trips, or even venture outward yourself, “Sign up today! Put your name on the list and then we’ll email you and keep you in the loop.”
By Amirah Jahaf & Rachel Gopaul
The Wethersfield High School Drama Club is performing a version of Shakespeare’s play A Midsummers Night's Dream. This version is going to be different than others you have seen before, it’s made to relate to our lives today.
There are funny characters to watch such as Bottom (Pyramus) played by senior Hailey Baranowski, and The Three Pups played by senior Abbey Riberio, junior Kendall Cholewa, and sophomore Mia Sommers. Another scene to check out is the battle between Helena (freshman Sarah Gurskis) and Hermia (senior Brianna Boucher).
When asked why we should make it out to see this play, drama director Mr. Roets said, “First of all to support peers, and because it’s funny. I know that we have done some sad stuff for plays in the last couple of years. It is the most entertaining play for Shakespeare, the Woodstock music is cool, 1969-style, and you get to see Mr. Nicholas and Mr. Pfister be patriarchal jerks.”
The show is playing from November 7-10 in the WHS Auditorium. Thursday, November 7 at 7:30, Friday November 8 during school, and Saturday, November 9 at 7:30. If you miss any of those, your last chance to see it will be Sunday, November 10, at 3:30. Tickets cost $12 for general admission and $8 for students and seniors. If you get hungry during intermission, DECA is selling candy in the cafeteria!
This play would be fun and interesting to watch. It’s also fun to see “Youthful rebellion, young love, foolishness, and ego leads to four young lovers going for each other all around,” according to Roets. Don’t miss out on what everyone will be talking about in school. Come and support the WHS Drama Club!
by: Bryce Cox
The Wethersfield High School marching band competed in the annual New England competition on Saturday, October 26. The competition took place at Naugatuck High School in Connecticut, and included many bands from across Connecticut and outside the state.
For WHS, this was the last competition of the season, and was especially emotional as it was many of the seniors last band competition. The band performed their show, Terraform, which includes a variety of small sections of pieces. Their show incorporates two movements from Holst’s The Planets, originally written for orchestra, playing Mars second, and ending their show with Jupiter. The show opens with the theme from Steven Spielberg's movie E.T. and the third piece is a theme from a Star Trek episode.
After a successful and emotional final competition, the WHS marching band camp in 6th in their division.
by: Connor Pace and Dan Jimenez
Student Athletes are known to have the most workload in school. However, when we think of student athletes, often the underestimated and overlooked team is our amazing Marching Band. They are there every home football game, compete in many prestigious competitions, and the dedication and skill that goes to each of the pieces they play is astonishing. For this reason, we decided to talk to a WHS player Vinny Mullizzo to find out what it is like to be in the Wethersfield Marching Band.
To be in the marching band means starts with being in their summer camp every hot summer day from 8:30am to 5:00pm, and once school starts you have to go to rehearsal from 5:30-8:00pm every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday plus performing at games. Then on Saturdays, they have band competitions which can run from 10:30am all the way until 11:00pm.
“From the whole school in general we don't get that much recognition because what we do is more outside of school, so the people do not really see what we are doing and there is not really a lot of marketing for it, like ‘Hey, come to the competition,’” said Vinny Milluzzo, a trumpet player and section leader in the marching band.
Next time you see someone in the Marching Band, give them a congratulations for all the hard work they put in and cheer for them in their competitions and performances.
by: Max Karkos and Trevor Piecewicz
On Saturday, November 2nd, one of the greatest high school traditions, Homecoming, is back.
It’s a night tailor-made for classmates to gather outside of the classrooms to bond and even meet new friends.
Some people go with dates, others go with their friends. Either way, Homecoming is an exciting and fun night for all.
We asked Ms. Rajan, the mastermind behind planning Homecoming, why one should attend the dance. She said, “Homecoming is just a chill time to hangout with your friends and dance to the music.”
There is no reason anyone should be sitting at home by themselves this Saturday. For just $10 you can come spend the night dressed up surrounded by your best friends and favorite teachers.
One of the fun parts of the night is announcing Homecoming King and Queen. Voted for by the students themselves, two students from each grade will be named as Homecoming King and Queen.
Ms. Rajan expressed her excitement by saying, “It’s exciting when people get to vote for the king and queen. I thinks it’s one of the things that makes Homecoming an exciting event.”
Every dance needs good music. One of the biggest reasons kids have so much fun at the dance is because of the DJ.
Part of Ms. Rajan’s vision of an amazing Homecoming includes a good DJ who plays great music. Ms. Rajan said, “We got a lot of positive feedback about the DJ from last year, so we brought him back again.”
Not often do you get to blast your favorite songs and dance in a crowd full of your best friends and classmates. DJ Butta Snipez will have you grooving all night long.
The students here at WHS can’t wait until Saturday night. We asked some of the students how they are feeling about the dance.
Senior and cheerleader Christine Vittner, said, “I can’t wait for Homecoming, by the end of the night everybody is friends. It’s such a fun time that nobody should miss out on. It’s one of my favorite nights of the year, and you only get four chances to go, so don’t miss out.”
Varsity baseball and soccer player,Matt Bagdasarian, said, “It’s a great time. I mean, I’ve had a great time every year. I look forward to it because it’s one of the only times where everybody from every grade can hang out, plus some of our favorite teachers come. I would encourage everybody to go.”
Homecoming is a special event that only happens once a year. You definitely don’t want to miss out on this great spectacle.
See you Saturday!
By: Maddy Burbank
The Yearbook Club is where students join to help design their yearbook. Students should join because it is a great way to get involved with your class and design your yearbook the way you want it.
“Students should be the ones to choose how their yearbook is made, not a staff member.” said senior and class president, Isaac Santos.
The Yearbook Club is technically a senior club since it is going to be the seniors yearbook, but it is open to all grades. They will not refuse to have someone in their club just because they are not a senior. What they expect from students who plan to join is to give ideas, and no idea is a bad idea.
“It is important to have a yearbook because it's a memory that you go back on and remember the times that you had with friends,” Santos said.
The club seems like a great thing that helps you interact with other students and design pages in the yearbook that will be kept forever. Imagine being able to look back at your book and think, “Wow, I did that.” It would be great right?
If I were you, I would consider joining. It's such a great thing that our school put together. They are always open to accepting new people into the club.
The meetings are held every Wednesday after school in the LMC. They discuss everything from the cover of the yearbook to even the superlatives. If you are interested in joining, you can speak to and/or contact Mrs. Griffin. She is located in the LMC. (Library Media Center)
If you have any questions you can contact either Isaac at firstname.lastname@example.org or Mrs. Griffin at email@example.com.
By: Maddy Burbank
GSA is a club that is open for all students here a WHS. It is an LGBTQ+ club where we talk about what we can do to help make LGBTQ+ people around the world more accepted and feel comfortable in their own skin. “All students at WHS are accepted no matter their pronouns” said Mrs. Harrison, one of the advisors of the club.
I know about this club a lot because I am in it. We start off the first meeting by going around and saying which day works for us best to have our meetings. We make sure that we schedule meetings that are flexible for all students in the club.
We also start off meetings by saying our name, grade, and preferred pronouns. So we make sure we can call someone by the pronouns that they identify as.
Also in the club we go on trips such as True Colors. True colors is an organization usually held at UHART or UCONN. It's goal “ensure that the needs of sexual and gender minority youth are both recognized and completely met” a quote taken from the True Colors website.
The event is for school GSA’s to go to. We go to see and interact with other schools GSA’s. If we plan ahead enough then we can go to pride parades. That also depends on where the parade is. If there is one nearby in hartford to close to us then we try to plan to go.
During the meetings, we talk about what we can do around the school as well. Last year, we set up a booths during the Laramie Project showings. These booths had information on how LGBT+ people are treated today and some had information about what the Laramie Project was. We also had bracelets and ribbons that we gave to people if they gave a donation. Half of that donation money went us for buying things to put events like that together, and the rest of the money went to LGBTQ+ foundations.
In GSA, the goal is to make everyone feel safe and comfortable in the environment. We don't allow anyone who is rude or against LGBTQ+. We make everyone feel safe and feel like they can come to anyone in the club if they need someone to talk to.
If you are interested in joining then you can listen out for any information on Blue Eagle News or you can talk to Mrs. Lindsay or Mrs. Harrison in guidance, you can just ask someone in the front of guidance if they are available. They can give you all the information you need about the club and they can answer any other questions you have.
By: The Michaels (Irace and Malizia)
Mr. Kieras, the leader of the Night's Watch, was the perfect person to talk to during the scary movie season. His taste is large and his wisdom is larger. If you need a guide to the classic Halloween hits, Kieras is your man.
“Friday the 13th is a classic. The originals would be good to watch, said Kieras. He also mentions Poltergeist as a very scary movie when it came out.
“For the most part I kind of don’t follow the newer horror movies because I think a lot of the time they spend more time on gore than the intensity of the unknown and uncertainty.” To Kieras, modern horror focuses more on shock value than suspense.“I’m more of a classics guy.”
Halloween is another classic that Mr. Kieras enjoyed. To Kieras, it’s the unknown that unsettles him so Michael Myers, who is a character who has no clear motivation, is extremely frightening.
What’s your favorite spooky movie? Go talk about it and so many other pop culture topics with Mr. Kieras and Night’s Watch!
by: Mark Zocco and Megan Kelleher
At the end of students’ junior years, NHS is the talk of the academic world. Everyone goes around asking with anticipation if their peers received that incredible opportunity and letter inviting them to apply for the National Honor Society.
Many stop and ask around, what are some of the requirements for the NHS? Look no further, because we sat down with a teacher who is also a council member for the NHS, reads over, and decides who gets accepted or rejected into the NHS.
We sat down with Mr. Moger, and spoke with him about a few frequently asked questions about what the council members are looking for in a model NHS student. “I believe that NHS members are students who are the leaders of the school, whether that be in or out of school. They should be the role models in the classroom, on the sports field, in the library, and everywhere for that matter,” said Mr. Moger.
He also said, “As school-wide leaders, the students need to take the initiative to help solve problems before having to get a teacher or administrator involved with certain school-oriented or personal issues.”
Now to the question that comes across most kids minds when it comes to the admissions process, what kinds of grades do you need in order to be considered for the NHS? You need to have at least a 3.5 GPA to be considered for the NHS, which is a B+ overall average. This means that you need to start working hard early on in high school to get your GPA where it needs to be to be invited.
Mr. Moger also went on to say that, “NHS members should be honest, hardworking, and perform to the best of their abilities. Granted we all have our bad days but as a general rule they should be putting forth their best effort academically as well as socially.''
After receiving a letter stating you meet these academic requirements, your next step is to complete an application packet along with a personal essay in order to be a full fledged member. First, to get this packet, you will have to go to Mrs. Neimic’s room and pick up the application along with any other handouts that she may have, she is located in room 110.
Next, your personal essay should be about you and either your academic, social, or personal life experiences could be compared to the four pillars of the NHS. The four pillars are scholarship, leadership, community service, and character. Together, the essay and application will be the two deciding factors on you getting accepted into the Wethersfield High School chapter of the National Honor Society.
Want more information about NHS? Talk to your school counselor or any of the NHS faculty advisors for more information.
By: Sammy Ritter and Jade Iaco
Marketing is one of the most popular career choices. In Wethersfield High School, the perfect club for that is DECA, which stands for the Distributive Education Clubs of America. This club is an organization for students who are interested in marketing, management and other business careers. Members can develop career and leadership skills while building self esteem and learning better team skills.
Most of the Wethersfield High School DECA students love being in it because it is an amazing opportunity for them to get a head start in the business world. “DECA was previously an upperclassmen club, however, this year it is open to underclassmen, who are taking a business class." says DECA Coordinator for WHS Mrs. Ricardi
You do need to be a current member of a marketing or business class to join. DECA holds fundraisers for the club so they can go to the different events for a lower cost. They get together after school on Mondays for meetings and they plan for competitions, fundraisers, field trips and events such as the annual WHS food drive. They get to learn how to make each of their marketing ideas even better and they get to see how everyone has a different idea and a different sense of style with their projects.
DECA events are aligned with the National Curriculum Standards in the careers of marketing , business management, finance, and hospitality. They competitive events are composed of a written component for example an exam or report and an interactive component with an industry professional judging. There are many different marketing categories that the high schools can choose from. Some include Career Development Project, Community Giving Project, Sales Project, Integrated Marketing Plans, and Entrepreneurial Plans.
This is a positive club with a lot of benefits. One of the benefits includes the trips. The DECA club has been to many places for the competitions such as Utah, California, Florida, and Tennessee. “My favorite place that we went to was Salt Lake City because I would never had gone there on my own, so it was a great experience.” said Mrs. Ricardi.
DECA competitors come up with the themes and and how the projects will be organized for competitions. Mrs. Ricardi is only there to help them with any questions that they may have and give guidance. Some of the competitions require them to come up with an invention and make a three minute video presentation.
The main DECA challenge is called Entrepreneur of Tomorrow Challenge, this asks you to create entrepreneurial proposal of a new product idea that goes with a specific market. The competitions involve people from all different schools from different cities and states. They all come together in one state or city to compete for a prize.
If you have any questions about anything to do with DECA or even just the marketing classes then go see Mrs. Ricardi in room 217. She will give you all of the information that you need to join the club that will prepare you for your future in marketing.
by: Cole Nocida and Andrea Martinez
As WHS students, we all know and love BlueEagle News, our twice-weekly news broadcast.
We took the time to interview some of the director and the cast of the program. They wanted to share their experience in BlueEagle News and how it became known in Wethersfield High School.
“I think It’s valuable for a student to get information in a way that they can absorb it., What better way to do it then have students present that information to students? We have had a successful program at my other school and here it is just becoming better.” said Susan Coco director and faculty advisor for the show.
BlueEagle News wants to inform students and their community about everything going on in the district and more importantly, the school. With the help of these students, that information gets across to everyone and can be heard throughout.
“BlueEagle News is a community show to inform people about what is going on in the town and more specifically the school. It presents information to our community,” said Kadin Joyce, one of the crew members.
Having something students can connect to when they are new is a good opportunity to meet new people and make friends. A handful of students have made strides through this program both socially and academically.
“As a Freshman, I came in the first day as a new transfer student so I had no clue what the school was about. The first day of school I saw an episode of BlueEagle News and wanted to be apart of it.” said Mia Sommers, who often hosts the show.
The Blue Eagle News team works hard to be at the scene and on top of the game. They are very passionate about what they do to contribute to the school. They spend time after school to film and make sure that all teachers have an opportunity to get their information out there while going as quick as possible.
“It really depends, we try and be as efficient as possible. Sometimes it goes a lot quicker than other times. We could have a problem with whatever. It could range from around ten minutes to thirty,” said Christian Cimino
BlueEagle News consists of students who are passionate, hardworking, and intelligent. They will do whatever it takes to make sure their voices are heard throughout the school and community. New members are welcomed and can make new friends when joining. They meet up Tuesdays and Thursdays.
This program is developing into something extraordinary and will only get better as the years go on. The students are what blend this program together, and without their skills, it wouldn’t be the same.
by: Nick Ursini
If you thought that Science Club would be boring projects and research, you’d be so wrong! In Science Club, all that is seen are students working together to create mesmerizing chemical reactions and solving the elemental makeup of everyday items such as pennies.
The students in Science Club proudly express their love for all forms of science whether it be earth science, chemistry, or biology. Aaron Ky said, “The Science Club was meant for people who love all types of science to come together and that is exactly what it has become.”
The students in Science Club have access to all kinds of resources in order to experiment with almost anything. On this particular day, the students were finding what your average penny is actually made up of. During this experiment, the students worked together as a team by getting each other the resources and tools they needed and helped each other by sharing ideas and suggesting different ways to solve the problem.
The club seems independent and completely driven by the members and students. The students come up with their own problems and solve them together. Not to say that the teacher is not willing to help the students if they run into a problem during their experiments. The students come up with most of the experiments completely on their own and discuss with each other how the experiment will be executed.
Unlike other clubs where some students will join and never show up because they lose interest, the students in Science Club all have a type of love for any type of science. From the experiments and the way they speak with each other while doing experiments, it is quite clear that the students are very good problem solvers and work together very well because they are in a club with other people who share the same passion for science.
Want to know more about Science Club? Go visit Mr. Horan to find our more information!
By: Hannah Sullivan and Reece Skelly
The Crossfire Prayer Group is a school club run by International Studies teacher Jeffrey Moger that meets weekly on Tuesday mornings at 7:10 AM. The club started roughly twenty years ago when two students approached him looking for a place to pray in school. While some may believe that a club centered around religion has no place in a public school environment, Mr. Moger firmly believes that students benefit from having a safe place to pray and pass their burdens off to a higher power.
This is a tight knit yet inviting group of students who discuss the problems they are facing and then relate it back to the original text. This is a place where students can feel comfortable talking about their problems and not worrying about it going around. Moger explains, “It is a private group, though anyone can come.” They pray together for strength and guidance.
While the club has thus far only had Christian members, Mr. Moger would like to make it clear that the group is open to students of all religions. While previous announcements have incorrectly labeled this as a Christian-only group, it has in fact been open to all religions from the start. In fact, Moger believes that his students could greatly benefit from interacting with people of other religions and learning about other beliefs. Anyone who would like to stop in and pray with the group is always welcome.
While he acknowledges that it would certainly be a change to incorporate other religions, perhaps even a little uncomfortable for some, he says that “Awkwardness is okay, It’s okay to be uncomfortable in some situations. It’s okay and we can get over [our different views] and I think everyone will benefit from that.”.
For more information on the club, feel free to reach out to Mr. Moger in room 116 or stop by and check out a meeting any Tuesday morning at 7:10.
By: Isaac Rios
You’ve just finished another week of school and you want to kill some time and talk with someone about a new movie you’re excited for, but there is no one around. If only there was a club where you can discuss about your favorite movie. Luckily, here at Wethersfield High School, the Movie Club does that and more, and is perfect for people who are as passionate about everything to do with movies!
Every Friday from 2:15-3:15 in Room 23 and run by passionate moviegoers Audrey Mainville and Kristina Hoda, the Movie Club is all about movies from all genres and from any director.
“Because they [Audrey and Kristina] really love movies and they love talking about it, and they know that there are other people out there that feel the same way, they started this club.” said Movie Club advisor Ms.. Coco.
If you’re worried about wanting to talk about your favorite film but being overshadowed by a discussion of a more topical movie, well it’s best not to worry because as Ms Coco said, “Our topics go all over the spectrum, all different genres“ So if you have a movie you want to talk about, just share away!
“It depends on what the girls want to do for the week, but they usually always have some activity going on.” So whether it’s discussions, trivia, eating popcorn, or wanting to learn something new about the medium, as long as it’s film related you can expect it and more! So after school this Friday, come on down to Room 23 and sign up to a club that’s perfect for everyone.
By: Mike Malizia and Mike Irace
The Night's Watch Club is an after school club formed by WHS students with the help of beloved teacher, Mr. Kieras. “The Nights Watch, comes from The Game of Thrones.” said chemistry teacher Mr. Kieras. “Again another show that the kids were interested in.”
“Basically [the club] about movie theories, talking about different aspects, and making predictions. We watch a lot of shows, discuss them, try to break them down.”
This is not just any basic movie club, the Night’s Watch delves deep into films and shows, discussing and dissecting them.
Originally started by “kind of like fanboys” who were very much into Star Wars, The Night’s Watch eventually developed into a group that watched a wide variety of films and shows. “We morphed a little bit now, with the Marvel Cinematic Universe and also all kinds of interesting shows and series that are on Netflix and Amazon Prime.”
The Night’s Watch club meets on Thursdays in room 537 from around 2:15 to 3:00. “It is designed for students to get together and talk about their favorite shows with like minded individuals.” If you enjoy watching and discussing films and TV shows, then The Night’s Watch club is perfect for you.
By: Emily Litke
The Pulsera Project is a non-profit organization that works to educate, empower, and connect artists in Central America with students all over the United States. These students, specifically those taking Spanish, sell colorful, handwoven bracelets and bags made by artists in Nicaragua and Guatemala.
At Wethersfield High School, students who are a part of the Spanish National Honor Society are selling bracelets, or “pulseras,” and bags.
Leah Lin, a member of the SNHS, says “Wethersfield High School has been participating in this project for two years now.” She adds that, “People should purchase a pulsera because the funds go back to Central America to help the artists and their families to be able to afford everyday necessities.”
The most important part about these bracelets is that when you purchase one, it comes with a tag that shows you who made your bracelet or bag, as well as a little information about the artisan. This gives you a personal connection with the bracelet.
If you purchase one of these bracelets or bags, you will be providing employment for nearly 200 artists, as well as funding educational programs, scholarships, women & youth programs, fair trade advocacy, social enterprise, and artisan benefits such as housing & healthcare.
Katie Galusha, Vice President of the SNHS, says “The Pulsera Project supports a lot of students, especially ones our age, with scholarships and higher education. The money also reduces the likelihood that people in Central America will have to work in sweatshops.” Galusha also adds that, “You could spend $5 on anything, why not spend it on something to do good for others, and you'll get something good out of it too. People should help others, especially those who aren’t as fortunate as us.”
As you can tell, the Pulsera Project has been around for a very long time and has been educating and empowering artists in both Nicaragua and Guatemala over this time. They have raised over 4.5 million dollars since they started in 2009, for artists in Central America and continue to do so today.
Make sure to purchase a bracelet for $5 or a bag for $10, at lunch or from any SNHS member, to show your support for these phenomenal artists throughout Central America. The Pulsera Project ends on May 13th.
By: Taylor Pitchell & Erin Nargi
Over spring break, WHS students embarked on international trips including trips to Ireland, Italy, France and Spain. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity for these students and it is something that they will remember for the rest of their lives.
Mrs. McGrath and several Wethersfield High School students traveled to Italy during this past spring break. They had an 8 hour flight over the Atlantic and spent all of spring break in the beautiful 70 degree weather. They visited cities like Florence, Assisi, and Roma where they visited old historic sites, museums and other locations that allowed them to soak in the Italian culture and history.
Students also had the opportunity to test their knowledge on the Italian language while eating unlimited amounts of pasta. Some students have been learning Italian since freshman year so this was the perfect time to put their Italian to the test. Students enjoyed their time and said the trip was 100% worth it. WHS is considering planning the trip again in the near future.
The other group, led by Mr. Roets and Mr. Nicholas, traveled to Spain over spring break. Lindsey Clark, a senior at Wethersfield High School said her favorite part of the trip was “walking along the beach in Barcelona, and later on being able to just sit on the beach and talk with all my friends from WHS but also having that time to be able to create a friendship with students from Washington state that traveled with us.”
In Barcelona, there tried many different foods, including flammekueche which is similar to pizza. “It is a really thin piece of dough that has a creamy sauce on top, with additional toppings such as ham,” says Lindsey Clark. It was a favorite of many of the students on the trip.
Clark described the trip by saying “Everyone had a smile on their face!” I think it’s safe to say everyone else who went on the trip could say the same thing.
Keep your eye out for posters for upcoming trips to create your own once in a lifetime experience.
By Katie Galusha, Manager of Choralaires
Most people know about what the Choralaires are up to during the months of December and the last couple months of the year. But what do we do in between? In short, a lot of music is involved.
Let us start with the general description of Choralaires: An auditioned-entry choir with 23 (6 basses, 6 tenors, 6 altos, 5 sopranos) spaces available. This is an honors choir, so with membership in the choir, you gain an honors credit. By being a Choralaire, you are also a member of concert choir. We’re also the choir with the infamous field trips for an array of concerts we have been asked to perform.
So, the Choralaire literature that is performed is usually a Capella. In the Christmas season, we have staple songs that you must learn and memorize for the rest of the years as a Choralaire. The rite of passage is when you learn “We Wish you a Merry Christmas.”
On a day-to-day basis, we rehearse all of our music. With the amount of music we perform, it is strongly suggested to practice in some way at home as well. When we are first handed music, the group tends to sight-read the music. This year’s phantom of the opera medley had a full sight-read run through, the first day it was handed to us.
This class gives you an opportunity to make some of your closest friends, as the chemistry within the group grows as the year progresses. On the rare occurrence that we have a substitute, you find the Choralaires rehearse at least one song, and then continue to play music in some way, or continue to sing from their literature. You form a great appreciation for music of all genres.
The audition process for Choralaires is the key component in order for you to be enrolled. You are able to audition in June. Your first opportunity to audition is freshman year. If you audition and make it in, you are a member in the group for the rest of your time at the high school. You obtain/accept the responsibility and demands of choralaires when you audition for the group in June.
Senior, Mackenzie Stevens (Alto II) states, “We are all so close that I think when you get put into the group, you’re at first saying ‘what is going on, what are these people doing?!’, because there are so many inside jokes [made] and euphemisms [that we all use in conversations now], its all really good.”
After the first couple of months, the group as a whole, make memories that we all cherish and laugh with one another about.
“We all work really well together. We know when to crack down when we need to, and we know when it’s okay to goof off with one another, so we can mix those together and still get a lot of work done” said Senior Alto II, Emily Raffalo.
The audition is nothing to be afraid of either. You sing the National Anthem for Mr. Scott P. Rioux (Choral Director) and all of the members of the same gender. Then, you sing with some of the members, display your vocal range, and get tested on sight-reading, along with pitch matching capabilities. All auditions within the group are never discussed with others.
We are never allowed to discuss auditions. At the end of the day, Mr. Rioux makes the decisions for the group.
“No one talks badly about you. No one will insult the way that you sing, so if you think that as soon you leave, that is not the case. We really appreciate people who come because it’s scary. We’ve all been in that position so we know what it’s like. So, yeah don’t be scared. We’re not [there] to judge you, and we know exactly how you’re feeling [while you audition].” states Raffalo.
My biggest advice is to audition! You will not regret it. You do not even have to have been involved in any choral group prior to your audition. Auditions are held in early June, so keep an eye out!
By: Emily Litke
As a member of Environmental Club, you will help out with activities such as Earth Day cleanups, field trips, fundraising, Source to Sea, and so much more.
The goal of this club is to promote environmental welfare in the school and outside in the community. In the past, the club have started recycling campaigns to get people to recycle more in the school. They also participate in the Source to Sea clean up at the Wethersfield Cove every fall to help ensure a cleaner Connecticut River.
Sydney Ouellette, senior and vice president of Environmental Club, said, “Eco club is planning a lot of exciting projects this year, including the annual Earth Day clean up with the Connecticut River Conservancy.” She also mentions, “We are currently selling Earth Day t-shirts to raise money for the Eleanor Buck Wolf Nature Center, who will use this money to upgrade enclosures for the animals, buying food, veterinary bills, and so much more!” The t-shirts are pictured below and are only $15.00, so make sure to get yours!
It is also mentionable that the club is planning a possible field trip and if it happens, they will be going to Boston in late spring to participate in a whale watch and learn more about the environment around them. The Environmental Club is fast growing and always welcome to new members, see Ms. Norris in room 410 for more information.
By: Katie Galusha, playing the role of Jane Banks in Mary Poppins
Reason #1: Expectations are going to be met, if not exceeded.
The issue with Mary Poppins as a show is the expectations that audience members have. It is also very cool to see the magic from your childhood come to life, which makes that a big demand for special effects.
But WHS English teacher and director Jeff Roets has been aware of this problem, yet was very crafty with fitting it onto our stage.
“We are limited to our stage. Projections for the scene landscapes, and the peninsulas on each side of the stages create space. The need to have levels on stage in order to create some magic and come underneath places for entrances, also make some space backstage. We cannot make big pieces unless they stay on stage the entire time.”
Senior Jared Kauffman has the amazing opportunity to use his talents to portray the narrator of the show, Bert. The role of Bert calls for a lot of energy and expectations that are set by audiences as well.
Senior Katie Ginter will play Mary Poppins and was willing to share her thoughts with playing the lead role.
“In a regular show, if you are a lead, you hang out in the wings and are in the show half of the time. But in this show, these particular leads [Mary, Bert, Children] require a lot of stamina, because you need to be on stage quite a bit.”
The children and Mary are in almost every scene, and Bert coming in a close second. The task of being ‘on’ is quite daunting.
Much like Bert, Mary Poppins requires a lot of energy, and has many expectations. Neither Kauffman nor Ginter disappoints, even for a Disney fan like me.
Ginter has acquired the persona of Mary with the sass and strictness that Mary Poppins is known for.
“Definitely both [sassiness and strictness are important to Mary]. To be a little sassy and kind of poke fun at the Banks parents. But I think they [sassiness and strictness] are both are quintessential to her being.”
Junior Hailey Baranowski gets to play one of the two kids, Michael Banks. As we’re teenagers, the transition from teen to child can be difficult.
“It can be a little harder sometimes because [Michael is] a boy. So, switching into that mindset too when you’re on stage, and acting the way a person in a different country of that age would, while still being appropriate, is challenging. I just need to try and get rid of that teenage mind while doing lines, and really become a child.”
Baraonowski went from long, run-on-sentence lines as Yente in Fiddler on The Roof, to quick, witty, and humorous responses as Michael this year.
Reason #2: An opportunity to see some ‘on stage magic.’
The stage effects within the show are simply amazing. The stage crew have a lot of responsibilities for the ‘magic’ to come to life. Thus far, they have not disappointed.
There are still some finishing touches regarding props, but it will be worth the wait.
“The tech guys that we have helping us are really good figuring things out hands-on, but they needed to see something first, and as did I. I saw what I wanted in my head, but had no idea how to get it there. So we watched a lot of Youtube video, a lot of other schools and companies that have been really good about putting stuff up. That’s been really helpful [with designing the set and stage effects]” said Roets.
Along with the ‘magic,’ the scene changes will be very quick making the show run with fluidity that a broadway performance has accustomed to.
Reason #3: Iconic Music That EVERYONE knows.
Mary Poppins has all of the songs you know and love from the movie, plus some beautiful and fun additions. My personal favorite additions are “Brimstone and Treacle,” and “Being Mrs.Banks”.
The pit, with Dave Dion conducting, is full of very talented individuals. The introduction of the pit was a difficult addition in our 9-hour rehearsal during the last day of February Break, yet very flexible and adaptive for the needs of everyone within the pit and on the stage.
Many lines in the show are spoken over some music, so the majority of the show relies on trust between the actors and the pit.
After speaking to Ginter, Baraonowski, and Roets, make sure to watch out for the musical numbers “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious,” “Being Mrs. Banks” (Sung beautifully by Junior Lauren Lesser), and “Let’s Go Fly a Kite”.
Come see Mary Poppins, March 8th and 9th, at 7:30pm, and Sunday, March 10th, at 3:00pm, to see all the magic you love and all the numbers that you never saw coming in that show.
Tickets can be purchased online at https://www.showtix4u.com/events/215 , $10 for students/Seniors and $14 for adults. If you do not buy your tickets online, you can purchase tickets at the door, however prices may vary.
By: Auna Foster and Melanie Cohen
On February 28 during Period 4, Mrs. Duggins and the Brothers and Sisters United (BSU) are holding a “Hair Show” at Wethersfield High School. This show is one of the many segments being held at the school to celebrate Black History Month.
This show is meant to inform the students of Wethersfield High School of the history of black hair in America, and the many different hairstyles that are popular in the African American community. Not only will students be able to see all the unique hair designs, but they will also be informed on different “do’s and don’ts” when it comes to addressing black hair and asking questions about it.
According to Time Magazine in 2017, a 17 year old Massachusetts high school student named Jenesis Johnson was told by a school administrator that she could not wear her hair in an afro because it was “extreme and faddish and out of control.” Another occurrence happened within the same year in Kentucky, where a school attempted to ban dreadlocks, cornrows and twists but never succeeded.
There are many positive outcomes with this show. Not only will the show address hairstyles but also share the history behind them. This is a great way to bring awareness to students about embracing your natural hair, especially with it being a way to break the stigma many people of color face.
Everyone is welcomed and encouraged to come to this event, in hopes of both educating the bright student of WHS, and building a bridge when it comes to culture shock, and diversity.
Written, edited, and produced by Wethersfield High School students, covering all news and events.