Blue Valley West Spotlight Sept. 19, 2019

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spotlight Blue Valley West 16200 Antioch Rd., Overland Park, Kan. Volume 19 Issue 2 Sept. 19, 2019

INSIDE Call Twins....................04 Voting Age Debate.....14 Under One Roof...........12 Minecraft Revival.......16

Masthead Letter from the editors


ack to school this August was anything but typical. From a virus that wiped out school schedules and put PC computers out of service to the power going out for several hours, BV West has kept everyone on their toes. The one thing we know is that this school year will be far from ordinary. Even our press cycle for this issue presented a challenge with malfunctioning equipment due to the virus and a lack of time to produce the paper. However, our reporters are some of the most diligent students in the building and together our staff put together a wonderful first issue.

This issue includes a variety of topics such as human trafficking, the voting age debate and a Disney vs. Nickelodeon TV show review. We’ve covered the stories that matter to BV West and our community. We hope you enjoy. Continue to persevere Jags, the year is only just beginning. We hope it will be a good one.

contact us Blue Valley West High School 16200 Antioch Road Overland Park, Kan. 66085 Phone: 913-239-3700 Email: Web: All Social Media: @bvwspotlight

19-20 Staff editors-in-chief

Your E.I.C.’s Hannah Cole Rae Zimmerli

On the cover

Hannah Cole Rae Zimmerli

managing editor Natalie Fiorella

web editor

Jaden Webster


uman trafficking has increased for the past six months in the Kansas City Metro Area. Due to this threat, parents hesitate or even ban their children from going to locations such as the Country Club Plaza, Worlds of Fun and Town Center Plaza. Reporters Aminah Syed and Kiley Peterson interview people in the community and at BV West about their fears and encounters with potential human traffickers. Read more about this issue on page eight.

Spotlight is printed at least six times per school year for BV West students and the community. Its goals are to inform, entertain and interpret through bylined articles, opinions and editorials, while providing an open forum of communication for the diverse student population. Spotlight aims to be fair, accurate and impartial. The content of the print publication, online news site and social media accounts is determined by its student editors as determined by the Kansas Scholastic Press Act and may contain controversial subject matter as the staff exercises their First Amendment rights. Spotlight does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the faculty adviser, the administration of BV West or USD 229.


Kolbie Christensen Jillian Dunlay Kevin Glenn Natalie Lindmark Ally Madden Kyler Murphy Lucas Park Kiley Peterson Evan Schmidt Aminah Syed

in this issue Sports


04................................Call Twins 06....................Personal Fitness


07.............JCCC in Highschool 08.......................Sex Trafficking


10..................Butterfly Threads 12.....................Under One Roof

photo by Evan Schmidt



14.................Voting Age Debate


18........Disney vs. Nickelodeon 16...................Minecraft Revival

photo courtesy of Sabrina Ross


Photo essay

20..................................Pie or Die


23.................TikTok Crossword photo by Ella Gordon

04 sports

A call to running Siblings rivalry yields to family bond for cross country leaders

Evan Schmidt reporter Jaden Webster web editor Running stride for stride at the Aug. 31 cross country time trials, seniors Bella and Sophie Call cross over the lake at Heritage Park. Photo by Evan Schmidt


o say “running is in their blood” is an understatement for seniors Bella and Sophie Call. The pair started varsity cross country and track beginning freshman year. The pair took up the sport at a young age. “We started running in fifth grade,” Bella said. “We just noticed we like the hard work we put into it and the success that we saw.” The success that the Call sisters see is because they both push and support each other through the demands of grueling distance running. Having live-in training partners keeps them training harder and running faster. Cross country and track coach, Mallory Huseman, sees the sisters bringing out the best in each other. “One day, Bella might be a stronger runner, and the next day, Sophie might be a stronger runner,” Huseman said. “It keeps things interest-

ing and gives them both an opportunity to shine.” The duo is also aware of how competitive they can be with each other. “We’re not afraid to pass each other and compete with each other,”

“We like the hard work we put into it and the success we saw.”

-senior Bella Call Bella said. “It’s been difficult sometimes when one of us is faster, but I think we both kept a pretty good attitude about it.” Despite their occasional sibling rivalry while running, Bella and Sophie are looking forward to their senior year of running together. “I want us to be able to stick to-

gether, race together and help our team together,” Bella said. “I don’t want us to be separate because I feel like we’re stronger together.” While running together has helped the sisters grow closer, it has also helped them grow as individuals. “I think that [running] helps us as individuals sometimes because we’re both having to fight through our own race,” Bella said. Bella and Sophie have special goals for their last year on the cross country and track team, they are both looking to making the most of this year. “My goal is just to have more fun with it,” Sophie said. “Not only focus on times and place, but also embrace what I have now because I’m never going to have the team again.” Cross country’s next meet, the Southern Stampede, is on Saturday, Sept. 21 in Joplin, Missouri.

sports 05

Keeping a fast pace, Bella and Sophie Call cruise through the first leg of their time trial. Following closely behind top runner, sophomore Katherine Soule, siblings Bella and Sophie Call exit the first part of their race. Posing together right before the Aug. 31 team time trials, seniors Bella and Sophie Call wait to warm up. Photos by Evan Schmidt

answering the call Four years of Call sister success impacts team

2016 Freshman Year Bella Call Varsity EKL Girls Team = 4th Sophie Call Regionals Bella Call Regionals Girls Team = 5th Sophie Call 6A State Team was not in the top 10

2017 Sophomore Year 5K Time-20:15 5K Time-19: 28 5K Time-23:27 5K Time-19: 42

Bella Call Varsity EKL Girls Team = 7th Sophie Call Regionals Bella Call Regionals Girls Team = 3rd Sophie Call 6A State Bella Call 6A State Girls Team = 5th

Sophie Call Regionals Bella Call Regionals Bella Call Varsity EKL 5K Time-19:29 Girls Team = 1st State Sophie Call Varsity EKL 5K Time-20:03 Bella Call Sophie Call State Girls Team = 2nd Girls Team = 2nd

2018 Junior Year

5K Time-21:39 5K Time-18:56 5K Time-21:41 5K Time-18:44 5K Time-21:59

5M Time-19:07 5M Time-19:12 5K Time-19:41 5K Time-21:39

06 sports

Sweet Smell of Success Local gym helps athletes achieve goals beyond school and club teams Kevin Glenn



strong locker-room smell is the first impression when entering the warehouse facility behind Carquest Auto Parts at 154th St. and Metcalf Ave. Colorful college logos proudly span one entire wall at PSP3. boasts that it is Kansas City’s “premier strength and conditioning facility.” Athletes hoping to realize their potential or gain a competitive edge work out at the facility in addition to practices with their BV West or club teams. Their customers, including senior Chase Lane, support the website’s claims regarding the custom sports performance programs. “I attribute a lot of my success as an athlete to the coaches at PSP since they got me in shape and got me motivated to strengthen myself,” Lane said. Lane swam the breaststroke on the fourth place 6A medley relay at State in February 2019. He stood on the podium in third place for the 100 breaststroke. “I don’t think I would love working out and competing as much as I do if it wasn’t for PSP,” Lane said. Three certified coaches work together to motivate and inspire athletes to become the best versions of themselves at the gym. Kory Robertson, Tracy Kujat and Nathan Hemphill use their athletic experiences to guide unique custom-

ized programs in a group setting. “Our goals for our athletes are for them to grow not only physically but mentally as well,” Hemphill said. “It is our mission to help people maximize their potential athletic skill in an environment of respect, accountability, discipline and selfless encouragement, believing that everyone we coach has the ability to positively impact the lives of many.”

“If you’re an athlete in the Kansas city area and are serious about your sport, you need to be training at Psp3.” -alum collin wiles Texas Rangers Hemphill’s long-term goals for the athletes as community leaders begins with the athletes’ goals to get better at their sport. “Every athlete has a custom workout written directly for them and around their goals, limitations, sports played and age,” Hemphill said. “All athletes, even

of the same age or sport, are different so giving them all the same program does not always help.” The individualized programs conducted in a competitive, yet supportive, setting supports the gym’s motto “stronger together.” 2012 BV West and PSP alum Collin Wiles was drafted by the Texas Rangers straight out of high school. The Ranger’s logo is on the gym wall as a symbol of Wiles achieving his goal. He attributes much of his success to PSP3. “If you’re an athlete in the Kansas City area and are serious about your sport you need to be training at PSP3,” Wiles said. “The workouts we did during my offseason were designed specifically for me and the demands pitching places on me. I came into spring training in the best shape of my life and it’s no coincidence. I know so much more about my body and I am able to recover so much faster due to what I learned from the coaches.” As Wiles continues to work his way up through the Ranger’s minor league teams, he’s endured locker room odors all over the country. The PSP aroma, built on dreams and dedication, smells like home.

new program saves time and money Kyler Murphy

news 07 reporter

District pays for students to receive associate degree or job certifications

$7140 Avg. tuition for associate degree

$41,080 Avg. public school tuition for 4-year bachelor’s degree


$41,080 Avg. private school tuition for 4-year bachelor’s degree

numbing numbers

Cost-benefit analysis supports district move to offer free degree and trade training


Avg. yearly mechanic salary

$50,390 Avg. salary for 2019 college graduate


Years Avg. time to pay off college


he statistics are staggering: 96.6 percent of Blue Valley students graduate, 90 percent take the ACT (with the highest composite score of all districts in Kansas) and the district is ranked ahead of all school districts in Kansas by Niche Rankings. Students are expected to succeed and attend college. “As someone who has had a rigorous schedule all four years of high school in an academically privileged area like Blue Valley, it is obvious that everyone around you expects you to attend college after you graduate high school,” senior Heer Mehta said. “You’re expected to have everything figured out.” Considering the future impacts of student loan debt and a trend toward high paying industries employing students straight out of high school, the Blue Valley School District created the Career and Technical Education program. The new program allows students to earn an associate degree at Johnson County Community College or certification in auto technology or construction management. The 21 students involved in the program district-wide have the opportunity to receive those degrees and certifications at no cost. Through the program, students get started early in their careers and are able to find out if they genuinely would enjoy that career path. “I’m learning about what I am interested in and planning on doing for the rest of my life rather than just taking traditional classes,” senior Zach Roman said. While Roman is not sure what his dream job might be, he knows he wants to build cars. “I think it is important, for students to experience career opportunities while still in high school, either to further their future job opportunities or to explore a career

area and discover that they have a passion for it,” Director of CareerReady Programs, Katie Bonnema said. “Or no, I don’t and now I know that and I don’t have to waste college tuition dollars pursuing something that I no longer am interested in.” The students participating in the new program get started on their chosen career path or go through less schooling to get the degree they want. “We have 10 [students] who are enrolled in an associate degree program. So they are full-time students at Johnson County Community College who maintain their Blue Valley student enrollment as well,” Bonnema said. “We have eight students in the auto technology program and three in the construction management.” While the program was under development, principal Dr. Brett Potts called Roman to his office to discuss the program and potential enrollment. “I see it as a step up,” Roman said. “It counts as college credit, so with enough credit hours behind me, I am hoping to graduate college in three years.” Bonnema’s perception of the program mirrored Roman’s. “This program is going to benefit students who desire the opportunity to be hands-on in their learning and to engage deeply in a career area before they invest their own personal dollars in education and certification opportunities in the future,” Bonnema said. 21 may be a small percentage of the more than 22,000 students in the Blue Valley School District but underclassmen will have the option to join this program next year by asking their counselor.

08 news

Human Trafficking Human Trafficking is a growing problem in our community and is causing parents and students to worry. Kiley Peterson Aminah Syed




ou’re at Walmart picking up a sibling or friend. All of a sudden, a guy pulls up in a car and asks you to roll down your window. He tells you that he just came from 69 highway and he needs help paying for gas. For former BV West student Camryn Leiker, this situation became a reality. “I said no and drove off. I didn’t really think anything of it until after I saw a Facebook post where it happened to a girl with the same story,” Leiker said. “I called the police and reported it. They said he might be part of a sex trafficking ring.” Sex trafficking is the act of transporting people illegally to sexually exploit them. The rise of sex trafficking is causing people to become more cautious and scared about their protection.

Human Trafficking

“I think that it needs to be stopped because many women are put in danger and even if nothing occurs, girls are constantly scared to walk around alone,” junior Mckenna Holland said. Kansas is becoming a hub for sex trafficking. This is because of the intersections of the interstate highways that travel north, south, east and west of Kansas. A location that is close to highways makes an ideal place for a sex trafficker.

Who Should you call? National Human Trafficking Hotline: 1-888-373-7888

Over the past few months, several instances have occurred in the Overland Park area in which a man or woman, believed to be involved in sex trafficking, has approached a girl. On June 8 2019 at the QuikTrip on 151 St., another sex trafficking ploy occurred. A man asked a woman to read his gas gauge because he said he had to travel from Pittsburg, Kan. to Omaha, Neb. to see his mother. Nine days later, on June 17 at the Walmart on 159 St., the same man asked a teenage girl for money, using the same story as before. The police said that this man was potentially involved in sex trafficking and created his cover story to lure girls into his car and abduct them.

*call 911 immediately*

Two different types: Two different types: Sex Trafficking and Sex Trafficking and Labor Trafficking Labor trafficking

Who’s included? Anyone can become a victim at any moment.

news 09 “He [didn’t break] any laws or anything like that, but it’s really suspicious in nature and usually when there’s smoke, there’s a fire,” said Public Information Officer for the Overland Park Police Department John Lacy in an interview with Fox 4 KC. “I just want the public to be aware that someone’s out there and they’re asking you come sit inside their vehicle. It’s pretty creepy.” On June 13 2019, a female teenager reported that she was being followed by a white female with long black hair at the Macy’s in Town Center. After the teenager left the dressing room, the woman asked about her sunglasses. After that conversation, the teen felt unsafe and told a Macy’s employee who contacted security. Afterward, she left Macy’s and contacted the police. On July 26 2019, The Kansas City Star reported that many women were being followed at the Country Club Plaza. However, the Police Department denied the reports on twitter. “It is really sad that [sex trafficking] happens to people, especially young girls because it makes [them] feel more like an object for men to admire than a human that deserves respect,” sophomore Isra Mounla said. In light of these recent events, parents have been more strict on where they draw the line when letting their kids travel alone. “I realized how big of an issue this was when my mom told me that I

couldn’t go places alone, especially to the gas station because before all of this happened, I would go to get gas by myself all of the time,” junior Hannah Cowen said. “I think the scariest part of this all is the fact that these experiences happened so close to where I live and happened at places that I visit at least once a week.”

Tips to keep yourself safe: Be aware of your surroundings Never have your eyes glued to your phone when you are out in public, especially if you are alone.

Avoid walking alone Try your best to travel places with friends, family, or people you know.

Don’t easily trust strangers Don’t talk to anyone you don’t know or do anything that would cause you to be alone with a stranger.

Always be prepared If you are worried about traveling alone, carry pepper spray. Allow a few of your friends or family to be able to track your device

Trust your instincts Always trust your gut, and tell someone if you think that you could be in danger.

10 feature

Butterfly Threads Sophomore Sabrina Ross and junior Olivia Persinger share their love of clothing with their fashion line Butterfly Threads Rae Zimmerli editor-in-chief


hile most teenagers spend their years in high school only trying to pass their classes, sophomore Sabrina Ross and junior Olivia Persinger opened their very own fashion line, Butterfly Threads, at the beginning of August 2019. The pair met in January when Persinger transferred into Ross’ math class and they have been best friends ever since. Going into business together felt like a natural next step. “We both love clothes and we have always talked about selling them, so one day we just went for it,” Persinger said. Ross dreamed of fashion and art long before Butterfly Threads. She discovered in eighth grade her passion for clothes and design. Her goal soon became creating a fashion line and pursuing her artistic interests in college. “I am very interested in attending the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles,”

Ross said. “I want to incorporate art into fashion.” Ross plans to take their clothing line in a street-style direction, similar to brands like Supreme and Off White. “The style of Butterfly Threads changes over time,” Ross said. “It honestly is trial and error to see what customers like the most. I’m trying to move it toward street style, but that isn’t very popular in Overland Park right now, and especially not at BV West.” Ross takes over most of the design while Persinger manages the marketing. “I answer people’s questions. I get all the order information and usually drop off the clothes to people as well,” Persinger said. “Sabrina makes all the butterfly tank tops, I can’t take any credit in that department, but we both go to the thrift store and pick out the clothes that we up-cycle.” Both of the girls love seeing

Olivia Persinger and Sabrina Ross pose while wearing their Brandy Melville inspired tank tops Photo courtesy of Sabrina Ross people wearing and displaying the clothes. “It’s so cool that I took part in something people enjoy,” Persinger said. “Honestly, I just like to see people happy and the idea is to spread positivity. I also love doing this with my best friend, it makes the business way easier and a lot more fun.”

Visit them at @butterfly.threadsss on Instagram

Ross showing off her jewelled Kylie Jenner Louis Vuitton sweatshirt Photo courtesy of Sabrina Ross

Ross wearing her jewelled A$AP Dior sweatshirt Photo courtesy of Sabrina Ross



14 opinion


More than a voice 16-year-olds want to vote and it is about time they have a say Jillian Dunlay reporter


n April 2018, students proudly walked out of class to protest gun violence and support gun reform in a demonstration both planned and managed by students. The walk-out was not an excuse to skip class. Rather, students stood outside in solidarity as they called attention to an issue that they felt politicians were failing to address. In addition to gun control, young people care about a vast number of social issues. From topics like cli-

mate change to immigration, teens are speaking their minds. However, they want more than a voice. They want to vote. And it’s time that they receive the opportunity to express their thoughts through the ballot. The mass school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in 2018 opened the door for teen involvement in politics. Student survivors of the shooting like Sarah Chadwick and Emma Gonzålez fought for stricter gun

laws and urged high schoolers all around America to do the same. After becoming inspired by the Parkland students, Massachusetts congresswoman Ayanna Pressley ignited the youth voting discussion in March 2019. According to The Washington Times, Pressley proposed an amendment that would allow 16 and 17-year-olds to vote in federal elections. The objective was to expand voting rights and allow more young people to weigh in on

opinion 15 issues that directly impact them. Although the bill did not pass, it certainly sparked a conversation. While many adults claim that 16-year-olds lack the maturity and responsibility to cast an informed vote, others recognize that an increased number of adolescents are engaging in political issues and therefore have earned the ability to participate in elections. Social studies teacher Nicholas MacDonnell acknowledges that lowering the voting is not a simple cut and dry decision. “If we look at global problems, things like climate change, I think the 16-year-olds have a really valid criticism when they say ‘Why am I not allowed to vote for decisions that could be impacting the quality of my life?’ I definitely have a lot of empathy and understanding,” MacDonnell said. “But when you talk about historic voting trends of 18 to 24-year-olds, the idea of a 16-yearold voting scares me. And not because I don’t think that 16-year-olds can make a valid decision, but will they even participate?” Changing the voting age is a complex issue. If we examine it from a maturity standpoint, 16-year-olds are more than capable of voting. Those who oppose a lower voting age often argue that 16-year-olds don’t have the life experience of an adult to make a truly informed vote. However, at age 16, a person can legally work, drive and even become incarcerated as an adult. The federal government can take money out of a 16-year-old’s paycheck for taxes, yet they cannot vote for how the government uses that money. It’s unjust that 16-year-olds can function as working, contributing members of society just like adults and still cannot cast a ballot. While 16-year-olds can have the maturity of an adult voter, it is still necessary that they are knowledgeable about politics and the government before they obtain the right to vote. Social studies teacher Josh Koerkenmeier emphasizes the need

for educated voters. “18 is the age at which most people are getting out of high school. Most people are more informed by that point [because] they’ve taken a government class, which is required,” Koerkenmeier said. “In my opinion, after teaching government for a long time,

“I would say only around half of the students coming into their senior year taking

they see others who vote, like their parents and teachers,” Dave said. “Also, I read an article about how it is more likely that you will continue to cast your vote once you vote [for the first time], so I feel like lowering the voting age to 16 will set a precedent for everyone to keep voting. It would give students a voice about issues they are experiencing while in high school.” Time and time again, young people are the catalyst for significant social change. They aren’t afraid to speak their minds and rebel against societal norms. Let’s give them more than a voice to express their beliefs and create change. Let’s give 16-year-olds the right to vote.

government class are what I


would consider to be pretty wellinformed citizens. But coming in, most of them are not.” It makes sense that the vast majority of teens are politically uneducated before taking a government class in high school. However, a lower voting age could further encourage the importance of civics classes. Many students who are enrolled in government classes have not yet turned 18, so they are learning about government while they cannot participate in it. If the voting age was 16, students in government classes could be more inclined to go out and vote, as the information they learn in school about government is relevant to their lives. BV West senior Ria Dave also sees how lowering the voting age would increase voter participation. “I feel like lowering the voting age to 16 will cause more people to go vote because they are informed with what they learn in school and




Do BV West students think the national voting age Should be lowered to 16? 84 votes. Poll conducted on Jillian Dunlay’s Instagram on August 25 2019.

16 a&e


Recent boom in popularity of Minecraft spread through memes and recaptures the interest of new and old players Lucas park



unior Harrison Dill started playing Minecraft on the Xbox and computer in 2014 when he was 11. He began after he saw many different YouTubers like CaptainSparklez and TheDiamondMinecart and DanTDM sparked the interest of many kids Dill’s age and inspired them to play the game even years after the game’s release in 2009. Dill felt encouraged by the YouTubers and wanted to play with his friends online, creating structures and mining ores. Dill found the game less appealing as he grew older, more worried about educational responsibilities than with playing a game for hours. However, due to the recent rise in popularity, Dill once again picked up the controller. “I started with Minecraft YouTube videos, which were a big thing at the time. Minecraft

During JAG time, sophomores Siddharth Balaganesh, Salman Mirza, Anthony Finch, Logan Black, Sattv Shah, Ethan Beane and Liam Mann play against other players on a Minecraft Server. Photos by Lucas Park

made me feel creative,” Dill said. The game was released for PC in 2009 as a sandbox game, made for people to express their inner creativity. Minecraft offers a variety of ways to play the game. For example, in single player survival mode, the main objective is to survive. Another way to play is on realms, which is survival but you can invite your friends to play with you as well. The last way to play is on servers, which has infinite ways to play. Servers can have thousands of people on them, which can have societies, intricate economic systems and mini games against other players online. Minecraft is the second highest grossing game of all time, behind only Tetris. With over 176 million copies sold, Minecraft has been the root of many students’ childhoods.

a&e The Minecraft revival can be traced back to the start of a Minecraft series on YouTube by Pewdiepie and other popular YouTubers. Pewdiepie is the largest YouTuber in the world with over 100 million subscribers and 23 billion views on his channel. From there, memes were created and spread everywhere on social media. Old Minecraft trends came back as memes as well. For example, the Minecraft parody song ‘Revenge’ on YouTube by CaptainSparklez was originally released eight years ago. The music video had 100 million views by 2013, but due to the sudden revival of Minecraft, it now has 203 million. There was 91 million monthly players on Minecraft even before Pewdiepie’s series. Although YouTubers boosted the watch time of the game, the game has never been unpopular.


“This is what I spent my whole summer on,” senior Kyle Odgers said as he shows off his Minecraft masterpiece. Photo by Natalie Fiorella

“I think the game will go through hills and valleys of popularity, but will always come back,”

-senior Trevor Sinclair Sinclair showcases his Minecraft spirit with his miniature backpack. Photo by Natalie Fiorella The future of the game is uncertain, Minecraft is more popular than it has ever been before. But alas, popularity and trends don’t last forever. There is always competition in the gaming community, companies trying everything to attempt to capture the player’s interest. The gaming market is very unpredictable, no one knows what game is next up. The hype for Minecraft will eventually die down, but that doesn’t mean a new update or meme won’t bring it back in the future. “It’s always been popular and will always be popular,” senior Thanh Nguyen said. “It’s just been more mainstream and revamped.” “I switched to creative mode because I really wanted horses and parrots,” senior Thanh Nguyen said. Photo by Natalie Fiorella

18 a&e

Disney vs.

A review of the classic Disney and Nickelodeon TV shows Hannah Cole


Teen wizard Alex Russo experiences the triumphs and defeats of both high school and witchcraft in New York City alongside her brothers Justin and Max. Alex is a rebellious girl who exploits her powers for personal gain. Her carefree character perfectly captures a typical, unenthused teenager. In contrast, Justin provides the mature voice of reason,

portraying a focused and school-oriented person. Finally, Max accompanies his older siblings for comic relief as he tackles the stereotypical dumb persona present in all wonderful children’s shows. These three kids attend school, work at their parent’s sub shop and compete for the title of the family wizard, all while concealing their powers to the outside

Twins Zack and Cody experience the “suite” life when their mother, Carey, lands a singing job at the Tipton Hotel. As a part of Carey’s contract, the Tipton offers the family a suite and the brothers experience the perks of living in one of Boston’s finest hotels. There they meet the hardworking and smart Maddie Fitz-

“Hannah Montana” features young Miley Stewart as she navigates and balances life between teenage normalcy and worldwide stardom. Miley performs under the alias Hannah Montana while concealing her true identity with the help of her father, brother and eventually her friends, Lilly and Oliver. Unlike previous Disney shows, “Hannah Montana” incorporates original music that

Natalie Fiorella

managing editor

world. This show features significantly more conflict, unlike other strictly comedic Disney shows. The TV specials and movies also add to the excitement and story. Once again, Disney includes their usual slapstick jokes but the more meaningful plotline makes up for the sometimes unnecessary humor.

patrick, the hotel candy counter girl, London Tipton, the spoiled hotel heiress, and Mr. Mosbey, the hotel manager. The infamous one-liners, such as Mr. Moseby’s “No running in my lobby!” and iconic songs like “Floss” make for a funny, albeit half-witted, show. While the acting is bland at times and the jokes are slightly overused,

is unmatched and adds to the overall appeal. In addition, Disney never fails to include their absurd humor which shines through during Miley’s “Bone Song” or through the character Jackson, the designated dumb person and Miley’s brother. Throughout each show, this humor can become stale. However, the targeted audience of pre-teens would giggle at the dim-witted jokes. This show also in-

this show remains a childhood gem. The cheesiness of Zack and Cody’s experience is no match for the ridiculousness of current Disney shows, therefore the occasional worn-out joke is excusable. This Disney Channel Original show is an essential addition to any kid’s upbringing.

cludes more emotional moments and tackles some serious issues. For example, Miley’s mom passed away before the show began, which thoughtfully deals with the issue of loss. Not only is “Hannah Montana” an entertaining show but it can also be a resourceful show for young kids dealing with difficult issues. This show is certainly worthy of its popularity.



nickelodeon Tori Vega, a 16-year-old who once saw herself as an average teen, gets the opportunity of a lifetime when she starts at Hollywood Arts High School, an elite performing arts school. Tori faces petty drama at her new school with the resident mean girl, Jade, but still makes new friends like Cat, Andre, Beck and Robbie. Tori’s older sister, Trina, who ironically is not nearly as

An impromptu audition sends four hockey-playing best friends to Hollywood, following them on their struggle to fame while still facing typical teen issues. Kendall, James, Carlos and Logan experience the beginning of their career as they navigate the path to success with the help of their producer and fellow hotel residents. While the band members make con-

talented as the other students, also helps her get through school. Along with the students, teachers like Mr. Sikowitz help Tori adjust to the school’s incredibly weird culture. Victorious includes original music throughout each season. The cast is all musically talented so the music is enjoyable and authentic. Tori is one of the weaker singers in the cast which makes her casting as the

vincing best friends, the quirks of each boy that set them apart from each other, seem like lazy writing at times. Kendall, the mature one, does not catch “Hollywood Fever” like the rest of the guys. James, the self-obsessed one, wants to ditch the band during one episode at the first offer of a solo career. They are both stereotypical boy-band attitudes that don’t surprise

After a video of middle schoolers Carly Shay and Sam Puckett making fun of their teacher goes viral, the two best friends decide to create a web series along with their dorky friend Freddie Benson. The web series clips are immature and rarely funny, but the rest of the show compensates for these doltish scenes. Spencer, Carly’s older brother

lead role questionable. Unlike other Nickelodeon and Disney shows, the friendships in “Victorious” do not seem as genuine. Tori’s friendships are not well developed and her feud with Jade drags on longer than necessary. However, Victorious is still a classic childhood TV show with great songs, memorable characters and more.

or intrigue the audience. The show’s best moments occur when the band works together. To add to their interest, Big Time Rush was a real band that produced four albums along with the show. While the show itself might become boring at times, the songs that stemmed from series makes the brand more exciting.

who serves as her guardian while her dad is stationed overseas, follows the TV show tradition of the kids being smarter than the adults. Spencer is odd and spontaneous. These qualities shine through during moments like when he brought an ostrich into their loft for no apparent reason. The dumb adult character is a worn-out gimmick, espe-

cially the constant jokes about how Carly is taking care of Spencer, instead of the other way around. For it’s time, “iCarly” was revolutionary because of the show within a show aspect and the early social media usage. The show has stale moments but is still enjoyable, mainly because of how weird it can be.

20 photo essay


Pie or Die Ally Madden reporter

Kiley Peterson reporter

Students get caught by suprise as their friends and peers pay to throw pie in their face at the Homecoming carnival

Photo by Ella Gordon Photo by Ella Gordon


3 Photo by Libby Johnson

Photo by Libby Johnson Photo by Libby Johnson



Photo by Rajneet Lehal

Photo by Libby Johnson

6 7

photo essay


9 Photo by Rajneet Lehal

Photo by Libby Johnson

10 11

Photo by Libby Johnson

Photo by Ella Gordon

12 13

Photo by Ella Gordon

Photo by Libby Johnson

Interactive Try your best to guess the faces behind the pie. See how many you get right!



1) Ella Cook, 2) Cindy Roach, 3) Dammy Idowu, 4) Jennifer Legrotte, 5) Trevor Sinclair, 6) Shelby Bloom, 7) Brooke Yarborough, 8) William Bennett, 9) John Martin, 10) Libby Johnson, 11) Lauren Sinclair, 12) Sofia Parks, 13) Nick Caterine

22 ads



(tiktok edition) Rae Zimmerli




2. I just did a bad thing. I ______ the thing I did. 4. Why are you so ______ with me? 7. Don’t be ______! Don’t be ______! Don’t be _____! 10. None of it was ever worth the risk, but you are the only _____. 14. I guess you wonder where I’ve _____.

1. This is my _____ boy tell ‘em. 3. _____, I didn’t know it did that. 5. I will _____ your bloodline. 6. How VSCO girls laugh 8. Okay like criss cross applesauce so baby ______ me. 9. The day of September on which the Area 51 raid will take place 11. Let me show you what you’re ______: paradise! 12. Respect the _____, Karen. 13. And I can put it in a ____. I got my edges back. 15. A boy that wears chains, black nail polish, a striped t-shirt

Come to room 233 when you finish to win a prize!


Blue Valley West Spotlight 16200 Antioch Road Overland Park, Kan. 66085

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15933 Antioch Road | Overland Park, KS 66223 7592 W. 119th Street | Overland Park, KS 66213