Emily Francis Copy Editor On Wednesday, March 24, the baseball team attended practice like any other day- but this day was different. While taking a lap around the field for warm-ups, the team stumbled upon a hole in their field. This hole was not just any hole in the ground- it was a 4-foot-wide, 20foot-deep sink hole located between right field and centerfield. This sink hole might as well have been a black hole for the team upon its discovery. The initial panic of the team and the coaching staff turned to just a mild inconvenience when the geologist came to inspect the damages. A decision was made that the best way to fill in this problem was with a combination of gravel and dirt, which was done by the school. The baseball team was scheduled for a home game very shortly after this sink hole was discovered, and this caused coaches and athletes alike to worry. They ended up being able to reschedule their game against Western Beaver, relocating to Penn State Beaver‘s field, where they preceded to mercy roll their opponent by 15 runs. Senior Bryan McSorley described that the seven seniors on the team were upset; they did not want something like a hole in the ground to ruin their senior season.
He went on to say that they had concerns about whether or not they would be playing on their home field again in their high school baseball careers. He also stated that this is not the only problem the field has; for a few years there has been a small bubble of concrete also located in right field. ―It‘s really nothing to write home about,‖ McSorley said. ―It hasn‘t even been that much of an inconvenience.‖ After some rainy days, the filled in hole had seemed to hold up, but as far as right fielder Brad Prinkey in concerned, the next home game might as well be his last. ―I was a bit concerned,‖ Prinkey said as to his reaction to finding the hole. ―No one is in any imminent danger,‖ Dr. Staub said, ―it‘s been taken care of.‖ The entire school‘s property was built on remnants of clay mines, and this is the reason for some air bubbles under the school and around the property. A few years ago, these sink holes were becoming a major concern, so the school pumped filling directly into the ground to fix what could have been a major problem. It seems to be that they missed some places around the baseball field, but these things are unpredictable. ―Are there any more sink holes? Maybe,‖ Dr. Staub said. But the school has taken care of these things before, and this year they did it again for the baseball team.
Bryan McSorley, Sports Editor
The sink hole was discovered between right and center outfield at the end of March; this was not the first problem the field has encountered in the past few years.
FHS breaking the low dropout rate trend of the last two years Meagen Finnerty
seemed to all hover around two percent in 2005; Riverside, Ambridge, Ellwood, and Freedom each had a ratEditor-in-Chief ing of about that. Dropout rates for the 2009-2010 school year have This area is known for having low dropout rates increased by six students from last year‘s low number compared nationally. 1.2 million students drop out of of four. Freedom‘s average dropout rate hovered high school each year; broken up, that‘s one student around 10 students yearly between the 2000-2001 and every twenty-six seconds. Most dropouts occur in inner the 2006-2007 school years. -city schools. Starting with the 2007-2008 year, rates greatly Nationwide, there are nearly 2,000 schools that dropped to only three students dropping out, followed have a dropout rate of approximately 40 percent. 8.7 by four the next year. The number has spiked back up percent of students dropped out in 2007 across the to ten this school year. United States. In Pennsylvania alone, 22 percent of With an average each of these years of 580 stuhigh school students enrolled in public school fail to dents, we‘re standing with a drop out percentage of 5.8, graduate in four years. compared to .01 percent last year. According to Dr. Staub, Freedom offers more opDropout rates throughout the Beaver County area tions than most Beaver County schools. For example,
Phase Four, Vo Tech, and night school. Night school recently underwent renovations to the program: students are no longer taught here four nights a week by Freedom teachers; instead, they are sent to a different area for studies, which Dr. Staub feels has been less impactful. As stated in The Wall Street Journal, high school dropouts make, on average, $300,000 less in their lifetimes when compared to high school graduates, and over $800,000 less than college graduates. About 65 percent of inmates in state prisons dropped out of high school, affirmed by The Wall Street Journal. The spike in Freedom‘s dropout rate is not unheard of, and only is significantly greater than the last two years.
22 April, 2010
Name: Zack Burns Nick name: The Helper Best talent: Helping the homeless Hobby: Helping at soup kitchens Favorite food: The kind I can donate to the needy
Name: Ben Bates Best talent: Hacky sack Favorite movie: Requiem for a Dream Favorite food: Goat cheese Why I’d make a great Mr. FHS: I‘m the essence of Freedom.
Name: Tom Paranuik Favorite artist: Kenny Chesney Best talent: Making people laugh Hobby: Lifting Why would you make a great Mr. FHS: Because I‘m a tank.
Name: Jeremy Herzog Nick name: J. Her Favorite artist: Vincent Van Gogh Favorite movie: Superbad Favorite food: Waffles Favorite quote: ―Do work.‖
Name: Joe Fubio Hobby: Chillin‘ out relaxin‘ and actin‘ all cool and shootin‘ some b-ball outside of the school Favorite artist: Copeland Favorite food: Seafood
Name: Adam Teets Favorite song: Build me up, Buttercup Favorite artist: Coach Mike Short Hobby: Playing with my awesome hair Favorite movie: Wedding Crashers Favorite quote: ―Spamoni, Spamoni.‖
Name: Daniel O‘Leary Favorite song: Build me up, Buttercup Best talent: Singing Favorite artist: Da Vinci Favorite food: CeleryFavorite quote: ―Sup?‖
Name: Seth Shidemantle Best talent: Making movies/skits Favorite artist: 3OH!3 Favorite movie: Never back down, Forrest Gump Favorite food: Peanut butter chicken
Prom Tickets: $130. Dress: Staff Writer $400. Shoes: $30. Hair: $80. Nails: $30. Flowers: $30. Tuxedo: $120. Now imagine all that money going to waste because you neglected to follow a couple of simple rules. A night full of memories could be ended before it even begins. Prom will be held on May 14 starting at 6 p.m. and ending at 5 a.m. the following morning. The administration has laid down some ground rules to ensure that the night runs smoothly. "It‘s a very classy event," said Mr. Delp. "We‘re suggesting that you use appropriate discretion when selecting a gown." He and Dr. Staub said that dresses should not be seethrough or revealing. They advise against anything that is inappropriately lowcut or that has an open midriff. The rules of the school dress code will not apply, but "we have the right to question any attire," said Mr. Delp. There is no set rule on what is or is not allowed. Any problems with a dress are evaluated on a case-by-case basis. If a gown‘s appropriateness is in question, Dr. Staub recommends bringing in a photo before the night of prom so that a solution can be reached. If a dress is too revealing, the girl could be forced to wear something to cover herself during Grand March, or in a severe case, could be sent home. "It‘s not just a personal preference; there are parents and grandparents at Grand March," said Mr. Delp. ―You just have to be responsible about it,‖ said junior
Thomas Rasmussen. For guys, there are not as many attire problems. Contrary to the school dress code, hats are allowed to be worn. That means guys can break out their Abe-style top hats or five-gallon cowboy hats. The only items prohibited are chains and spurs on shoes, because these could snag someone‘s dress or cause an injury. Dress code, though, is not the only thing the administration has concerns about. "We always worry about kids partying too much," said Dr. Staub. Once students arrive at the Marriot in Cranberry, they will be searched for anything that is not appropriate. "It‘s not gonna be this major intensive strip search,‖ said Dr. Staub No one is permitted to leave the Mariott before 5 a.m. Saturday morning. If, for some reason, an attendee must leave, a parent or guardian must pick them up from the hotel. Alcohol is strictly prohibited at prom, and anyone who arrives under the influence will be forced to leave immediately. Since prom is a school function, disciplinary actions will follow the guidelines set forth in the student handbook regarding things such as weapons, fighting, and intoxication. Anyone planning to attend that does not currently go to Freedom has to meet with Dr. Staub prior to the prom. According to Dr. Staub, there have only been two issues in the past ten years that resulted in students being kicked out of prom. "I don't anticipate any problems," said Dr. Staub.
Rob Deane Staff Writer The French club is trying to plan a trip to Quebec. The club was planning on going to France during the 2010 -2011 school year. However, if you read last month‘s issue of the FHS Press, then you probably know that the French program here at FHS is coming to an end. This is the last year for French at Freedom due to a lack of participation, as there were only about 60 students committed to the program for next year. As a result, the French Club is trying to put together a farewell trip instead of trying to pushing for one more year. Quebec is the only French-speaking province in Canada. Funding for the trip decreased, so the trip needed a budget cut. The trip's duration would obviously have to be much shorter, leading to a cheaper cost. The French students were upset when they heard their class was being taken away and that their trip to France was cancelled. A trip to Quebec would be better than no trip at all and a good way to end the French Program. ―I think a trip to Quebec is a great idea. It stinks that we can‘t go to France but going to Canada would be cool too,‖ said Matt Notarianni, a French student.
22 April, 2010
Walk for a cause Shannon Schimmer News Editor Can taking a walk help in the saving of lives? Could buying a piece of paper give back to the research that could someday maintain the life of an unborn child? The March of Dimes is an organization that encourages others to do just that, and the cause has reached out to right here in Freedom. This organization raises money to help fund research to aid in resolving still births and miscarriages. They are constantly searching for a way to help women who would suffer from these things in the future, and someday to prevent it from happening. Meagen Finnerty, a senior here at Freedom, has asked the National Honor Society to help her in her support for the March of Dimes. Finnerty has personally experienced the pain that comes with losing an unborn loved one to the tragedy of still birth, having lost her nephew only last year. In honor of her late nephew, a March of Dimes team was put together with the name of "A.A.D. Team." With the help of the National Honor Society, Finnerty would like to encourage the students and families of Freedom to join the fight by going to Brady's Run Park on April 25 to partake in a walk that is three miles long. Registration will begin at nine that Sunday and the march will end at three. Also, Freedom will be selling paper cut-outs and all proceeds, on top of profits made from the walk, will go to the March of Dimes organization. Cut-outs will be sold for one dollar starting this week, "I think it's a really great cause and very worthy of a couple hours of everyone's time," says Finnerty. National Honor Society is inviting all students at Freedom, anyone who wishes to join, to take the opportunity to aid an organization that is working every day to save lives. If you have any questions or are interested in walking this coming Sunday, talk to Ms. Ross or Meagen Finnerty.
question in addition to book work. Applequist said that she typically spends three to four hours completing each assignment. Staff Writer The highest possible score on the ―They‘re starting to feel the crunch,‖ SAT is 2400. A five is the maximum score said Mrs. Hastings, ―but they‘re not going on an Advanced Placement test. What are to cram too much; they‘re just going to the students at Freedom doing to get their continue working hard.‖ best possible score? ―I won‘t hardcore study for it beAs most students begin to enjoy the cause it‘s math; it‘s stuff that you do all relaxation of the warmer months, many year,‖ said Marissa Ritorto. upperclassmen will be hitting the books in After completing the hundreds upon preparation for several tests. hundreds of math problems, she and the rest of the class probably won‘t have to. For their final review, the class will be SAT having a pizza party the night before the education Students pastplanning high school to continue know thetheir imexam. portance of the SAT. However, their level of concern deAP U.S. History termined how they prepared: some took The six juniors and one sophomore preparation classes, some reviewed test taking the AP U.S. History exam will be structure the night before, and others did fighting to beat the odds. The APUSH nothing. exam has only a 50 percent pass rate, the Getting ready for the SAT does not lowest of all the AP exams. necessarily mean hours of studying. Mr. Sophomore Jimmy Kappas says he is Bennett says that the best way to prepare not too worried about the test. ―I have for standardized tests is to take challeng- been studying for a while now, and I have ing classes. Dad at home to help me.‖ Before taking the SAT, junior Alana The exam covers all of U.S. history, Hill was not worried about the test. It was or as Mr. Tinker likes to say, ―from Coonly after getting her scores back that she lumbus to Clinton.‖ realized she needed to do some preparaAfter the first three nine weeks, juntion. ior Mariah McGlothlin filled an entire ―My mom made me freak out. She three-subject notebook with handwritten told me I wouldn‘t be able to get into col- notes, in addition to some typed pages. lege with scores like I have. She‘s going ―I‘m going to try to re-read my notes, to make me study.‖ Hill plans to take the $65 exam again in June after studying a large SAT prep book. ―I didn‘t take it yet; I‘m afraid of what my scores will be,‖ said junior Samantha Praskovitch.
but that will probably take three whole days,‖ she said. There is so much information to cover that, in April, students taking the AP exam began coming in at 7:00 a.m. every morning to get additional notes that would not be covered in class due to time constraints.
This year six students took AP Chemistry with Mr. Saludis. Of them, only Brittany Sturm will be taking the exam. Senior Brad Prinkey said he took the class because he likes chemistry, not because he wanted to take the exam. ―What I teach is to prepare for college, not necessarily for the AP exam,‖ said Mr. Saludis. He believes the test is outdated and is not a reflection of what students truly know. However, he gladly stays after school to help Sturm go over material not covered in class. In all, she will probably put in an extra 40 hours of work in preparation for the AP exam. This test has one of the lowest national pass rates, with last year‘s being 60 percent. Most students who take the AP Chemistry class at Freedom do not take the exam: usually only one or two every year sign up.
AP Calculus AB
All 11 seniors in AP Calculus will be taking this exam on May 5. Mrs. Hastings encourages all of her pupils to take the exam because there have been ―more good surprises than bad surprises.‖ She is confident in their success because, as a reader for the AP exam, she knows exactly what to teach her students. Most of the class won‘t be doing much studying outside the requirements of the course. Every night they are assigned a lengthy free response
Saying goodbye to Freedom High Be sure to check out our last issue of FHSP for the 2009-2010 year to see the rest of the senior goodbyes!
Have you ever been sitting at a restaurant attempting to enjoy your meal when a truly pungent odor drifts toward you? Or walking to the store when someone standing on the opposite side of the street spits directly in front of you? There are various forms of tobacco floating around, but two in particular seem to be rather popular here at Freedom. People smoke. And people chew. It‘s common knowledge; but has anyone noticed the surprisingly high amount of people who do so? Nicotine addictions seem to be the new ―thing‖ lately. Nowadays, instead of hearing, ―Hey, where do you think I could score a concert ticket?‖ when you walk through the halls, all you hear is, ―Hey, do you have a cigarette I could bum?‖ 16,100 students under the age of 18 in this state alone become new smokers each year. You can only imagine how many kids have been doing it for ages. The truth is, you cannot argue with the facts. 17.5 percent of high school students in Pennsylvania alone smoke cigarettes. On top of that, 10.3 percent of high school students in our state use smokeless or spit tobacco. These numbers may not seem all that high, but when you think about it, they could—and should—be a lot lower. However, the pressure to be popular has gotten to be too much for kids to handle. The thing that no one seems to realize, though, is that nicotine addictions don‘t make you look cool; they make you look, for lack of a better word, stupid.
The most distressing part of it all? One must be seen to be cool. Smoking and chewing in public is never an attractive activity; there are too many people in this world who are repulsed by the act for it to ever be considered widely acceptable. Additionally, the risk that secondhand smoke raises for those in the vicinity is only getting higher and higher. 2,100 adults die each year in Pennsylvania from secondhand smoke (not to mention to 20,000 that die from their own smoking habits), which is far too high a number from a cause so foolish. Look at Freedom as a prime example of this public misdemeanor. It can be assumed that students who chew don‘t mind it at all, but what they don‘t realize is the effect their choices have on other students around them. Have you ever seen a spit bottle? The residue from that tobacco is positively abhorrent. What‘s worse is when students decide to take it upon themselves to use the school as their own personal spit bottle; for example, the water fountains, the bathrooms, the cafeteria, etc. During the school day is neither the time nor the place for such behavior; said actions are distracting, inappropriate, and quite frankly, rather nauseating. Of course, there‘s a simple solution: keep your personal decisions to yourself. Pushing them onto others by smoking or chewing around them will only make you look even more unappealing. If you decide to make that poor life choice, then you‘re the one that should have to deal with the consequences, not the rest of the world.
FHS Press — Editorial Board Editor-in-Chief: News Editor: Opinions Editor: A&E Editor: Sports Editor: Photography Editor: Copy Editors: Faculty Advisor:
Meagen Finnerty Shannon Schimmer Jordan Kusich Nolan Rider Bryan McSorley Jessica Rosenkranz Emily Francis, Jordan Kusich Mr. David Hartman
Reporters & Photographers: Alyssa Applequist, Liz Brunner, Jake Cruise, Karla Knauff, Cole Leonberg, Rosalyn Nye, Ashlynd Robb, & Marques Muron Editorial Policies: FHS Press is the official student newspaper serving Freedom Area High School, in Freedom, Pennsylvania. The views presented herein are not representative of the school, faculty, or administration; they are solely the views of individual student writers. The newspaper accepts and strives to publish signed letters to the editor under 250 words. To submit comments, press releases, or letters to the editor, or to purchase advertising space in the paper, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact Mr. Hartman in Room 114.
The life of the (after) party Prom is now less than a month away, therefore it is THE topic of discussion throughout the walls of FHS. Yes, the preparation is the important part right now: the dress, the tux, the flowers, meeting for pictures with your friends, and the dress— again. But what happens at the end of the night when the music shuts off and the formal wear is stripped? Most of the time—the same thing all over again—but instead of rocking the dance floor at the Marriott, prom attendees find a friend‘s house to keep the party going, minus the formalities. After-prom parties are a great way to continue the fun of prom, but keep it within your group of friends and their dates. Some of the most fun times of the night can happen then, only adding to your highlight of the year. Having an after-prom party doesn‘t necessarily mean literally going to a party directly after prom. Sleeping is allowed in between, and instead of just getting together for good food and good friends, your group could go somewhere: a more popular idea for afterprom activities is going into Pittsburgh.
Personally, I would rather go straight home and sleep. The dance floor is the only place to be from the time you get there until the time you leave. As you might imagine, this does leave you slightly drained, both physically and mentally, after about eight straight hours of tearing it up. In my experience, I struggled to keep my eyes open the moment the music shut off. In retrospect, going home and sleeping was probably one of the best decisions I could have made. Heading home for the night—well, morning— does not necessarily make you or your date a partypooper. On the contrary, it can make you and your friends more revved up for the next day‘s activities, whether that is heading to Kennywood with your group of just staying close to recover from the night‘s events. Don‘t forget: you‘re going to want to remember your prom. Don‘t let something liked drinking or using any other various substances ruin your big night. Keep the partying clean. Enjoy your dressed-up friends, best friends, and date. Dance your heart out at the biggest party of the school year.
22 April, 2010
We aren’t laughing with you: High school maturity
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It‘s the fourth nine weeks. The sun is shining and it‘s the final stretch towards summer vacation. You‘re sitting in last block just waiting for 2:30 p.m. to come so you can go home and enjoy the nice weather. That just doesn‘t seem to have happened yet, though; it seems as if the end of the third nine weeks and the beginning of this fourth nine weeks has brought more homework upon us. I was looking forward to the last nine weeks, and I was looking forward to having less homework and more free time after school. It seems as if I‘ve been getting even more homework than before. We also seem to be doing a number of projects too; I am currently working on projects in three of my seven classes. Juniors had to take PSSA‘s on top of everything else. I always think of the last nine weeks as being relatively stress-free. It's supposed to be the best few months of the year, but it hasn‘t started that way. I for one am hoping that things will start
6 8 5 4
to ease up after progress reports get sent out. It‘s frustrating when you‘re stuck inside doing homework on a nice day. Why couldn‘t they give us more homework in the winter? We are inside more during the winter and we would rather be outside when it is warm and sunny. Don‘t get me wrong—I‘m not saying we haven‘t had any free time at all. I‘m just saying we‘ve had a noticeably larger amount of schoolwork lately. Personally, I‘m ready for summer. I don't have anything against school, but that winter was too long for me. I'm looking forward to those summer days when I can just sit back in the sun and not have to worry about anything. I'm looking forward to not having a pile of homework waiting for me. I'm looking forward to just being able to enjoy myself. I don‘t know about you, but I plan on putting some heavy focus on getting through these last few weeks of school and homework and finally getting into summer vacation.
Take a look around you. Who‘s sitting in the back making ―jokes‖ and trying to be cool or funny. I imagine you can name a few people. Doesn‘t it seem like less and less people are mature in the school? While it‘s alright to have a good time and goof off, it‘s also alright to have some maturity. As I will be the first to admit that I‘m not always as mature as a junior should be, I can also say that when the time calls for it, I can step it up and be a mature adult. And I‘m sure some of you can admit that too. Others… well, they can‘t say too much. But, come on. Is the maturity of a four year old really that appealing? Does it make you feel cool when you‘re the rude, foolish kid sitting in the back making inappropriate jokes? Do you really think that everyone else is laughing with you? News flash: we‘re laughing at you, not with you. Most of us don‘t laugh at your remarks, we laugh at you making a fool out of yourself. We‘re old enough now to know
when a joke‘s just not funny anymore. Sure, there‘s a time for laughs. But when you‘re cracking ‗funnies‘ every five seconds in the back of a classroom, it just gets old. You can‘t see past the ―comedy‖ behind your jokes. But trust me, when you‘re 30 years old and still flipping someone‘s burgers, you‘ll look back and remember that time you made fun of the customer you‘re cooking for. You will remember how you sat back in Mr. What‘sHis-Name‘s class and made jokes about what they say or what they wore. Then you‘ll look at them and see that they aren‘t driving that same beat up car that they had since high school, like you do. You‘ll notice their shoes alone are nicer than your ―burger-flipping, grease-hopping‖ attire. And you‘ll probably think: ―Wow, if I grew up just a little, like them, I‘d be something.‖ Oh, but don‘t worry, your new coworkers will still ―feed your flame‖ so you can continue to make jokes. Keep this in mind though: they aren‘t laughing with you.
Jordan Kusich, Section/Copy Editor
Students seem to have been bombarded with homework assignments and long-term projects this final nine weeks. The hopes of summer are high in their eyes, and the only thing a vast majority of them are looking forward to is 2:30 p.m. on June 10. Summer’s coming fast, but not until each and every last assignment is turned in.
Stash away the winter coat, the gloves and hats, and the boots; Spring is here, a time to substitute your boots for flip flops and your coats for a light jacket. Tank tops replace sweatshirts and miniskirts replace pants. It‘s warm, the sun is shining, and we all just want to be freefree to wear whatever we want, whenever and wherever we want. The only problem is, as with everything else in the school, there is a strict list of rules regarding what is and what is not acceptable to wear. I hate to break this to you, but most teachers plan to regularly enforce these rules. There are 15 specific rules in the student handbook that range from the hat on one‘s head to the shoes on their feet. From what I see around the school on a day-to-day basis, there are three rules that are constantly broken: the first rule is number six, stating, ―skirts and shorts must reach the tips of the middle finger when hands are fully extended at the sides.‖ Whether it is the short ―Daisy Duke‖ esque shorts or the literal miniskirts, these articles of clothing are much too short for school and are completely ridiculous. There is no reason why everyone has to see every detail of your lower figure. The next rule is number seven, which stating ―tank tops and spaghetti strap tops may be worn only if under a buttoned shirt or sweater.‖ I see this one broken constantly. Winter just ended, and mostly everyone is still all white and pasty. Do you really think you look good showing the whole world what you've got? I'm here to tell you that, as
22 April, 2010
somebody seeing this daily, students don't notice you and certain teachers will send you straight to Mr. Delp's office. The final and most commonly broken rule is one that has created the most controversy. In fact, at one point this rule caused the perpetrator to be banned completely, regardless of who sports them and who refrains. Yes, I am talking about hats. Rule number one states, ―Hats and non-prescription sunglasses are prohibited in school. Note: No hats are permitted in senior pictures in the school yearbook.‖ Hats are such a big deal to our school that they have acquired the number one rule spot and are even banned from being in pictures. I for one agree with every rule in the dress code except for this one. I understand that it is disrespectful to wear hats in a building and they can be distracting in the middle of class, but why do we have to take them off in the hallways or at lunch? Why can't we keep them in our lockers? Understand that even though I, and probably most of the school, disagree with the hat rule, teachers and hall monitors will still tell you to remove them. The point I‘m trying get across here is simple: dress codes rules are a big deal in our school and anyone caught breaking the rules will have to go home and change. Why go through all the hassle? Just save the miniskirts and tank tops for date night, and dress in something that your grandmother would approve of for school.
Jordan Kusich, Section/Copy Editor
Recently, more and more teachers have begun to get serious about the dress code here at Freedom. Students have had an awfully large amount of lenience with the dress code in the past; however, rules are rules, and our faculty is taking action.
97.87: the number of miles that separates me from my beau on a regular basis. With the hectic flow my life is currently swept up in, adding a boyfriend almost a hundred miles away certainly doesn‘t lighten the load. Relationships in high school already have the odds stacked against them. Adding in any extra factors is really going to push relationships to the breaking point before they‘ve even begun. Distance is never desirable in a relationship. It‘s hard to stay close to someone when you are both leading two very separate lives. Often you have to put your plans on hold in order to try to hold onto a connection with that special someone. If you aren‘t willing to dedicate an hour every couple of nights to sit on Skype with him or her, then a long distance relationship is never going to work. You‘re have to sacrifice a lot; you‘ll never be the couple walking down the halls daily holding hands, you can‘t make spontaneous plans for any given night, and you won‘t get the constant supply of love and attention that you‘d like. It‘s a personal decision: whilst you are sitting in front of your computer chatJordan Kusich, Section/Copy Editor ting, you have to decide if the face staring back at you It is a well-known fact that long-distance relation- is worth giving all that up for. For some people, the separation seems normal; ships are difficult. But through text messaging, young people often jump into relationships with people webcamming, and making a lot of long road far from them. It‘s harder, though, when you used to trips, they can work. Nothing is impossible: if the have unvarying access to them daily and then, one day, relationship truly means something to the couple, they aren‘t there. Think about a few couples that you know: more often than not, they are a grade apart. they will do whatever they can in order to work When one involved party heads off to college, a feeling things out.
of abandonment can ensue. Now both committed members are at separate crossroads. Freshman year of college provides so many new and exciting opportunities; who wants to be tied down to a high school student who is hours away. Girlfriends and boyfriends supply a constant net to fall on when the going gets tough, but they also prevent casual flirtations and exploring any new outlets. After all, college is full of opportunities that don‘t involve commitment, which is what many people want, and the one left at home knows that. He or she may need constant reminders of your complete and utter devotion to him or her, or they too could choose casual flirtations over utter commitment. Out of sight, out of mind, right? It can all get very tedious. I would never recommend a long distance relationship. It‘s a lot of hard work and requires a lot of blind trust. Sometimes, though, your heart just doesn‘t care. If you truly want to be with someone, you‘ll find a way to make it work. Some people are worth the heartache of separation, and the memories you had and the future memories you plan to make are enough to keep you going. However, if you aren‘t willing to make the effort, it will never work. There is one quote that always reminds me of my sweetheart; it gives me hope and maybe someday our biggest issue will be leaving the toilet seat up when I visit versus overcoming the obstacle of a hundred miles: ―Home is where the heart is, and my heart is at home with you.‖
HOT: Ugly Americans - Twp months left
NOT: Allergy Season - PSSA Testing
Freaky freedom fun
Nolan Rider Section Editor Lately there has been much debate over which has the most rewarding cinematic experience: 3D or traditional movie. With more and more theatres offering this alternative way to watch these movies, and an abundance of films that are being made in 3D, its popularity is growing. Is this how our grandchildren will be watching movies, or is this just a fad that will die out in the near future? Well, at least for now, we do know that 3D movies don‘t seem to be going anywhere. With huge blockbuster hits such as Avatar, Alice in Wonderland, and The Clash of the Titans, box office attendance in the US and Canada have increased greatly in the last couple years. After 6 years of decline from 2002 to 2008, the box office finally saw an increase this and last year. The figures show that 3D movies have brought more people into the theatres then
have seen in nearly 10 years. The figure increased in 2009 by 6% to 1.4 billion, partially attributable to several successful 3D movies launched in 2009. Now I know most of you are reading this and are slightly bored by all the numbers and statistics, when all you really wanted was to read this to see whether or not you should pay the extra 3 dollars to watch your movie in 3D. My answer: yes. I‘ve seen both Avatar and Alice and Wonderland in 3D and was completely immersed in both movies. James Cameron‘s World of Pandora comes to life with a vast array of colors and sounds. The action immerses the viewer in a 3D world of their own.. 3D adds a whole new realm to your cinematic experiences. Some movies work better than others. There are a couple movies that are to be released in 3D that
are stirring up excitement within the movie world. A movie that is to be released this June in 3D is Toy Story 3. This movie should be wildly popular with our generation. Everyone of us as a child has to remember this classic Pixar release. Toy Story and Toy Story 2 broke ground in the ‗90‘s, being some of the firsts in a long line of computer animation movies that grew in popularity in the late‘90‘s up to today. This release excited me, and when I heard it would also be in 3D, I knew that I would be paying the extra 4 dollars for yet another pair of 3D glasses. As a child of the ‗90‘s, just like the rest of you, I can‘t wait to see the third installment of these films. I just hope that with the flood of new movies that are about to be released, the cinematic community doesn‘t try to overplay this and just make movies that will be visually appealing in 3D instead of a solid story line and acting. I do recommend seeing movies in 3D if they are offered. However, I would be weary in the future as to whether or not it‘s going to be worth the extra money. As always, I would encourage you to do a little research before you go spend your hard-earned money, or in some cases, your parents hard-earned money.
Ph Cu oto: t-o Ros ut: a Ka lyn N rla y Kn e au ff
Jacquie Cook Karla Knauf Staff Writer ―Ink my whole body,‖ sophomore Jon Ellsworth sings. More and more teenagers gear up and buckle down on the idea of artwork forever being a part of their bodies. Many FHS students have made the decision to permanently engrave artwork onto their skin. ―I love tattoos, I really want another one so bad,‖ said junior Samantha Hildman, who had just recently gotten a cluster of stars on her right foot. The stars are all colored differently to symbolize different types of cancers. She wanted a tattoo with meaning: ―they have to mean something, they can‘t just be there,‖ Hildman said. Another student with a tattoo on her foot is Alyssa Applequist; she has the word ―Dance‖ in beautiful italicized lettering with a few stars surrounding it, because she was in dance for most of
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Samantha Hildman her life. Anchor for DTV, Christian Lematte, has ―We‘re loyal like brothers‖ stamped across his chest, as does one of his longtime friends, Mike Flook. The pair got them together to symbolize their friendship. At age 13, freshman Allan Conforti had a large cross tattooed onto his upper arm bearing his last name; many of his family members have a cross tattooed on their bodies because they are Catholic. Conforti plans on getting a few more tattoos in the near future, such as two stars, one on each elbow. Junior Jacquie Cook is no stranger to tattoos: she has a turtle behind her ear, a heart with her sister‘s name in it, and Finding Nemo‘s Squirt. She got the turtle behind her ear and on her foot to exemplify her younger cousins, Jacob and Devin. The heart on her leg is her most meaningful
Jacquie Cook tattoo; it is in remembrance of her older sister Marina, who died from leukemia in March of 1998. Taryn Martin, junior, was first tattooed at age 14 and got the same one redone when she was 16. She has a butterfly branded on her hip with some swirls around it. Martin says she got it to remind her of what she was into when she was young because everything will probably be different when she's older. Martin's father is a tattoo artist and he did the newest part of her tattoo. She is planning on getting her next one either on her side or the top of her shoulder. Another inked-up Freedom student is Matt Piccinini, who has four. Matt‘s first tattoo is the one on his back, a large cross with ―Psalms 23," which his parents got for him. They didn‘t get him the other three he has; those were more of surprises. Piccinini has barbed wire wrapped around his upper arms
Karla Knauf and also on his forearm where he has the name ―Lewis‖ inscribed. Lewis was his name before he was adopted. All together, he spent about $700 and he plans on getting more later on. Some other students that are inked are Matt Maragone and Ryan Heckman with their initials, Jessica Jankowski, who has stunning Chinese symbols from her neck down the top of her spine, and Jordan Mercandante, who has a Chinese symbol as well on the back of his neck meaning ―strength.‖ In beautiful cursive lettering, Putri Mesing has the phrase ―God‘s Will‖ on the right side of her hip.
Christian Cody Burkhammer LeMatte Photos by: Karla Knauff
All for fun or Fun-Fore-All? flashing lights and the smell of junk food entice the senses. We stand in line, waiting with anticipation to put a whopping $1 on our Fun cards for the arcade. Section Editors Imagine a world where a night of fun only costs Some of us go straight to the snack bar for more food $6. Is it pathetic that we, as teenagers, spend most of and the occasional energy drink. our Monday nights at the Fun-Fore-All arcade? Heck We make our way through the hordes of small No! children that gather around the ball pen and find the Our night begins at CiCi‘s $4.99 all-one-would- arcade section of the building. Everyone has their facare-to-eat buffet, which is usually topped off with a vorite game that he runs straight towards for five cents small mountain of cinnamon rolls. Our top recommen- of ecstasy. dations are the sauce-less pepperoni pizza, buffalo For example, Luke Mesing makes a bee line chicken pizza and, if you‘re feeling froggy, the alfredo straight towards the Ms. Pac-Man and Galactica mapizza is phenomenal. Our honorable mention is the chine. When he gets bored he joins the rest of the crew mac ‗n cheese pizza, just because they put macaroni at the Need for Speed racing game. on pizza – c‘mon. Our band of friends holds many of the top scores Buttons threatening to burst, we waddle to our on the machines, including two player games like vehicles and make our way up Highway 19 to paraLet’s Go Jungle and Time Crisis. The overwhelming dise, aka Fun-Fore-All. We unpile from our caravan of embarrassment of attempting to play DDR usually cars in the parking lot and make our way inside. The causes us to stray from that game, and all others like it.
Nolan Rider & Bryan McSorley
With the addition of Terminator: Salvation, we just may not leave at our next visit. After kicking virtual butt as compadres, most of us partake in a small air hockey tournament. To be kind, none of us will be winning the Air Hockey World Championships. Freedom senior Chelsea Costello has been an employee at Fun-Fore-All for nearly two years, and, unlike some teenagers, she loves her job. So if you‘re in need of employment, and are tired of the same old fast food restaurants, I suggest picking up an application. Breaking News: The lighthouse mini-golf course is now OPEN. Coming at the beginning of April, all of the rides and go-carts will be open to the public. You know what that means, of course. We will no longer have separate lives. If anyone wishes to contact us, you know where we will be spending most of our Mondays and half of our summer.
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Nolan Rider A&E Editor You may have noticed the new stunning yellow Scion parked by the gate in the student parking lot. That marvelous machine belongs to Nathan Novak. It was a project car that he worked on for his senior project. Hours of hard work and dedication went into every aspect of the car. Novak spent days working on his new 2007 Scion tC. Nathan has been working on this car for over four months and has over 109 hours of work logged into the body alone. Every detail has been analyzed and perfected, and it shows. This car is show worthy and gets looks every time it is taken out. All the work and money that went in Nathan‘s car was his own. He replaced the Engine, Transmission and Clutch. The time and money needed to do that is staggering alone. All the body work was done by
hand. He bought the car with a few dings and dents. The body is now in magnificent condition and looks brand new. On top of the restoration of the body, Nathan installed a full body kit to give the car a more tuner look to it. To top off the body kit, he added aftermarket head lights and tail lights. The car is lowered by a 1 ¼ drop and is resting of 18‖ custom rims. These tweaks with the added custom yellow and black paint job give this car a look that is right out of a Fast and the Furious movie. His work is not finished either. Nathan continues to think of new things that can be added to the car to make it even better; who knows what direction he‘ll take it. Nathan first showcased his new car at the beginning of April and, to much dismay, some of his fellow students vandalized his car. An unknown student poured tobacco spit on the car. This wore away some of the clear coat. This is not the first time Nathan‘s car has been vandalized in the
high school parking lot either. His last car, which was a Tiburon, was also vandalized during school hours. Novak is reluctant to bring his car to the school anymore, and now the administration is keeping a closer eye on the student parking lot. This is by no means the first signs of vandalisms in the lot; many students have been punished throughout the year because of similar actions. Next time you‘re walking to your car through the parking lot and you see this Scion, take a moment to look it over and understand the time and effort it took to perfect it. Also, if you have a little extra cash lying around and you‘re looking for a cool new ride, maybe something before you leave for college, Novak is looking to sell it. It will, however, cost you a pretty penny. Novak is not going to let this one go for cheap. He is looking for about $11,000 for it.
Photos submitted by Nathan Novak
Ms. Ross‘ theater arts classes going out with a bang doing something different, but are learning everything that goes into making a play and actually performing it. These creative kids have been Staff Writer hard at work all year learning all the aspects of the last class of Theater Arts teacher Ms. Ross's “To be, or not to be, that is the question.” The Theater Arts department has been career. hard at work this year with many different proThese young actors deserve to be comductions, such as The Princess and The Prinmended on the success they have achieved. cess, a murder mystery entitled Room 21, Read- While most of the students take the class merely ers Theater with It’s a Wonderful Life, compet- to have a chance to perform, others just like the ing in Forensics, and Shakespeare competichange in pace and the ability to not be themtions. Also, they got a true inside look at play selves for a little while. writing while they spent the majority of the year While they have done a lot this year, there learning how to write and develop plays that is still more yet to come as Ms. Ross‘s eighth were entered into the Young Playwright‘s com- period class performs a self-written murder myspetition at the Pittsburgh City Theatre. tery at the Vicary House on May 21 and on May The two classes have spent the year each 22; they are doing a children‘s show written by
Breonna Kopac. This is not the first children‘s show this class has done: a few months ago they put on a play called The Princess and the Princess at Big Knob Elementary School. They also did a readers' theater production of the Jimmy Stewart classic, It’s a Wonderful Life. Also, they are going to perform two plays written by Crysta Clear and Miranda Pfeiffer. The sixth period class is doing a play called The Brick and the Rose, and they are also going to put on a readers' theater showcase with plays written by four freedom students: Nolan Rider, Samantha Smith, Suzanne Hasenflu and Julie Scheller. These plays were selected by a dramaturg and Ms. Ross in order to give the young playwrights some well-deserved time in the spot light.
Also the four girls in the 4x8, sophomores Emilee Handyside and Sara Allego, freshman Dee Dee AdCopy Editor ams, and senior Julia Kubica placed first by a landslide in their race. Girls As for the throwers, sophomore As well as the weather, the track Shya Moon placed fourth in shot put team has really started to heat up and junior Lauren Reese placed third their season in the past three weeks. in discus. Most of the team attended the 26th These same girls, along with annual Center Track and Field help from the rest of the team, helped Classic two weeks ago where clinch the important win against Beamany of our talented athletes could ver. be seen on the podiums receiving On Tuesday, April 13 their first gold, silver, and bronze medals and major section meet was held away at also ribbons for fourth, fifth and Beaver High School, with accompasixth place. nying schools Wilkinsburg and CorThere were about 17 schools at nell also attending the meet. the invitational, and our girls earned Beating Beaver was one of the third place in total points among major obstacles the team had to them, and a giant shiny trophy to avoid in order to close the gap to boot. their fourth consecutive section title. Top scorers for the girls inThe scores were close with Beaver, cluded Breanne Prinkey, earning but the girls fought to the end and fourth place in 100 meter hurdles and pulled through with the win. second in pole vault, Julia Kubica They are now one step closer to taking first in the open 800 and their goal of claiming the section, Alexis Crossland placing third in the and both the athletes and coaches 100 meter dash. hope that they will continue to rise to
Emily Francis, Copy Editor
Top left: Freshman Kelsie Matlick hurdles at practice. Right: Joe Ermi and Ryan Bran lead other sprinters in an active stretch. Bottom left: Mariah McGlothlin perfects her jumping skills.
The boys team is also making a good run into the season, joining the girls with a win against Beaver and Wilkinsburg. Many of the stand out boys also made an impression at the Center invitational as the team took 5th out of the 17 schools there. This includes Zane Zeigler, who placed second in both the 110 hurdles and the 300 hurdles. Also the boys in the 4x100, Joe Ermi, Seth Shidemantle, Ryan Baran and Shane Quinn collectively placed third, as well as the 4x400 that placed second. Quinn also placed third in high jump, while Nick Turner earned first in pole vault. This year they can see a section win on the horizon, and they plan to do everything in their power to secure it. Their efforts have been put to the test, and they have been rising to the occasion. Hopefully, keeping with this frame of mind, their hard work will reward them with a section win.
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How do you want to be remembered? roof. Even through the success of the "Dogs for Dawgs" day, the Staff Writer soft ball team has not been fairing When it comes to classic, all- well this season. With a record of American foods to eat at ball 1-8, the team is not quite living up games, nothing beats out hot dogs. to their standards from last year. When it comes to watching our ―They‘re battling hard but favorite Lady Bulldogs playing a coming up short,‖ said Coach Burreal sport, nothing beats out soft- ger, when asked how the season ball. was going. So when these two are comDespite this, the team is not bined, what happens? Pure Freeeven close to giving up. The seadom awesomeness; this is what son is nearly half over now, but happened on April 13, when the Coach Burger, as well as the rest Freedom softball team went up of the team plan on finishing against New Brighton in the very strong. first "Dogs for Dawgs" day. With strong returning players This game was exactly the as well as new freshman on the same as any other game, except team, there is no doubt that they you won‘t see Dr. Staub cooking will put some victories under their up and handing out hot dogs to belts by the end of the season. anyone at any other game. Regardless, the softball team Despite a loss to New Brigh- has come up with a brand new idea ton, the "Dogs for Dawgs" day to promote school spirit: Dogs for was a complete success. There Dawgs. This idea, which was were more people attending this thought up by none other than game than any other, and the fact Coach Burger herself, will be used that one needed to wear a Freeby both the track team and the dom-related shirt to get a hotdog baseball team, with the latter doing shot school spirit through the their‘s the first week of May.
Attention all athletes: This is last call. The year is almost over so it‘s time to put up or shut up. For seniors, this is your last chance to be remembered in Freedom as an athlete, or an athlete at all for that matter. What you work to do can and will solidify your athletic legacy for years to come. For everyone else, bust your hump to make a name for yourself and your team. Laziness in any place drives me insane, but laziness on the playing field is something that makes my blood boil. In my opinion, there is nothing worse in sports than a person who cheats himself or his teammates. When you are lazy, you are not only hurting yourself, but also everyone on your team that is counting on you. I do not understand
what is so difficult about dedicating your effort for a for two hour game. After every game or meet, every player should ask himself, ―Did I give it my all today? If this were
If that answer is no, then you have one of two options: bust your rear end next game, or quit. Option one will take dedication and a change of attitude; option two is completely up to you. Not giving your all is not worth your time or your teammate‘s time. Don‘t play if you aren‘t going to try. As a senior with no aspiration of playing collegiate sports, I know that this spring will be the last time I play baseball competitively with "Freedom" across my chest. I take pride in wearing the red and white for four my last game, would I have years and giving it my all. I any regrets?‖ don‘t want to have any reIf the answer to those grets for the future. questions is yes, then that is I hope that you feel like all anyone could ask of you. me; if not, you can have the Your legacy as an athlete legacy as a lazy and selfish will be as the hard worker athlete. who gave 100 percent each You decide, because and every time he laced up time is running out. his cleats.
Rob Deane Staff Writer Hockey is one sport that we do not have here at Freedom. The baseball and softball teams are getting their seasons underway, along with the track team, but what about hockey? If you look over that hill of the student parking lot you just might see some kids playing down there. There are many Freedom students that like to play hockey. It's a great pastime and something fun to do with your friends. You don‘t have to play on a team, just go out and have some fun with it. When asked why he enjoys the sport, A.J. Nigro said, "I'm competitive and love to blast slap shots past the goalie. I like physical contact and it is fun to hit people into the boards.‖ Jesse Sturm added, ―It‘s a great team
sport and something fun to do in your spare time.‖ There are a lot of students that play roller hockey for fun but are interested in playing on a team. Many students try to play at least once a week over on the court below the school. Mr. Campos recently held a meeting for students interested in playing ice hockey for Ambridge next year and there were about 25 kids that showed up. This would be a great thing for Freedom to do if Ambridge was willing to allow it. However, some kids can‘t afford the ice time and there would be more kids interested in playing roller hockey. A number of kids think Freedom should get a team of their own. ―I think Freedom should try to get a roller hockey team because there is a lot of potential for talent. We have all the aspects of a hockey team and strong players for each position,‖ said Dan Wesolowski.
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Hockey has been growing in popularity locally in the past few years; a lot of it has to do with the success of the Pittsburgh Penguins. A hefty handful of students became interested in hockey around the same time the Penguins got Sidney Crosby the team and started to get better. I feel that hockey is a sport that just not a lot of people know too much about; the sport needs more advertisement. If you are interested in hockey at all, you should go out and give it a try. You just might find it as fun as I do. Sturm said, ―I think we should get a [roller hockey] team because hockey is something that a lot of people enjoy at Freedom and many people will never play if it is not a school sport.‖ Nigro added, ―I think roller hockey would be good at Freedom because there are so many kids enthused about playing it."
Jessica Rosenkranz, Photo Editor
Left: Coach Wetzel watches as senior Cole Lentz takes a hard swing in a loss against Center earlier this season. Lentz drove in one of Freedom’s two runs that game. Right: Junior Derek Lehocky races down the line for an infield single. Below: The infield meets on the mound before one of the 12 innings during the Center game. Playing with the proSports Editor verbial target on your back is not an easy task. Just ask the baseball team, as they work to not let the chance of a promising season slip past. Freedom started the season out well, winning their first two games. In those games, 26 Freedom players crossed home plate safely. The next two games were a completely different story for Freedom as they only scored a combined five runs in losses to Ellwood City and Riverside. Lack of timely hitting and intensity killed the team as they dropped consecutive non-section games for the first time in three years. After their two straight losses, Freedom took out some frustration on Cornell, pounding them by fifteen runs. Dan O‘Leary launched two grand slams and provided eight of Freedom‘s 16 runs. Lefty pitcher Jesse Johnston picked up his second win of the season that
day, throwing a one-hitter. bases loaded in multiple innings. Freedom's hardest opponent so far this season has Freedom will continue to battle and be resilient as been their section rival, Center. In one of the most classic they strive to get back into the playoffs and make an baseball games in Freedom history, the Bulldogs battled even deeper run than last season. the Trojans for 12 innings, only to lose 5-2. Even in the loss, many bright points shined through for Freedom. The biggest bright spot was Cole Lentz. Lentz was almost unhittable. He racked up 16 strikeouts in eight innings and gave up only one run. Along with his dominating performance on the mound, Lentz also knocked in one of Freedom‘s two runs. Coach Wetzel was proud of his senior pitcher. ―Cole was a stud. He is by far the best player in the county,‖ Wetzel said after the loss. Through the loss, Freedom learned that their swagger was back. The team never gave up, even though timely hitting has continued to be the Bulldogs' Achille's heel. They left 15 runners on base, including leaving the