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Spring 2019


Table of Contents National News: (starts on p. 4) Brandon Noll, Editor

Community News: (starts on p. 9) Julia Remick, Editor, Assistant Editor-in-Chief Mary Foxen, Editor Student Stoptlight: (starts on p. 13) Lana Hess, Editor Sports: (Starts on p. 14) Julia Remick, Editor, Assistant Editor-in-Chief Mary Foxen, Editor Reviews: (Starts on p. 18) Melissa Ng, Editor Matthew Fiore, Editor-in-Chief & Design Editor Ms. Skolnik, Faculty Advisor NOTE: The opinions expressed in the following articles DO NOT represnt the opinions of the administraive staff at GCHS, merely those of the writers


Dear Reader, As we enter Spring 2019, the flowers are beginning to bloom and the weather is beginning to warm. While we rush about preparing for upcoming exams, concerts, and sports seasons, we take for granted the natural beauty of our world. Amidst our haste we fail to recognize the repercussions of our actions, as we choose the convenience of plastic bags and water bottles over reusable containers. The very beauty we neglect to appreciate is being threatened, and each of us are contributing to its destruction. Floods in Venice have been reached of up to 5 ft above sea level, endangering a rich culture and people’s lives. An ocean heap weighing 80,000 tons that resides in the Pacific Ocean is destroying our marine ecosystems. In this ECHO issue, we bring attention to these pressing environmental concerns while presenting suggestions of ways to reduce plastic consumption as a community. As a society, it is necessary to reevaluate our use of plastics and nonrenewable resources. To urge this movement forward, we can voice our support for leaders taking action to protect our endangered environment. In this season of rebirth, now is the time to grow as people by changing our lifestyles in manageable and practical ways. Whether for you this means ditching plastic straws or helping to educate a friend about our endangered Earth, I urge you to take some kind of action as time is running out. So as you unwrap your new pack of #2 pencils for your upcoming AP exams, please take a moment to consider the impact of that plastic wrapper. The aggregation of all of our efforts can save the very place we call home. Sincerely, Julia Remick Assistant Editor-in-Chief



National News

Protecting Our The Pacific Ocean Garbage Heap By: Emily Kerimian

For decades debris has been accumulating in the Pacific Ocean. Today, the heap of plastic and other refuse has grown to roughly twice the size of Texas. Weighing 80,000 tons, it has also been dubbed, “the Trash Island”, due to its immense size. The existence of such a heap begs the questions: what has caused this outrageously sorrowful situation, and what can be done to reverse it? The primary reason for this environmental disaster is, not surprisingly, humans. Our society produces a lot of trash. In 2013, the EPA reported that Americans alone produced 254 million tons of waste, approximately 4.40 pounds per person per day. And while efforts to recycle have been good, a lot of garbage does end up in landfills, and the ocean. Another factor in the convergence of the trash is natural. Pieces of plastic in the ocean are subject to what the NOAA calls the Pacific Ocean Gyre. Simply, a gyre occurs when currents in the ocean converge and create a vortex. The Garbage Patch has been created by such an occurrence. In fact, two have been created, one in the west, near southeast Japan, and one much closer to home, the eastern patch, between California and Hawaii. These swirling mixtures of litter pose a huge risk to marine ecosystems close to them, as the larger scraps of plastic have begun to fragment, meaning that fish, and other


marine creatures, can swallow the bits more easily. This doesn’t even take into account trash that washes ashore and threatens shore dwelling creatures, like seagulls. The two causes only exacerbate each other, which can be extremely frustrating. Whatever is dumped into the ocean will only circulate and feed the heap. Fish that don’t die via plastic consumption can end up being caught by fishermen, and those fish are toxic to consume. By feeding the ocean plastic, we unintentionally feed ourselves plastic. So what can we, as a society, do? One solution would be to recycle more, but recycling is becoming a less viable option as China, the country that has long been the recipient of American recyclables, is accepting far fewer of them. Therefore, there is a need to reconsider the packaging we use and the products we buy. Composting organic materials (food waste, grass cuttings, etc.) would also alleviate some of the waste, preventing it from ending up in landfills. However, solutions are also needed that account for how to remove the refuse that already constitutes the heap. The Ocean Cleanup Foundation, a non-government environmental conservation organization based in the Netherlands, has created a prototype of a machine that they hope will be effective in retrieving large amounts of rubbish. The idea is still being analyzed and


tested, as researchers are not sure how the project might affect marine life. In the past, the organization has sent out a fleet of vessels with nets attached to harvest samples of plastic. The method was successful in gathering small samples, but proved to be less successful in harvesting larger objects. In 2016, the foundation used a former military craft to aerially survey how large the heap truly was, which was a success. In addition, two of the UN’s sustainable development goals relate to preserving Earth’s water supply, as well as protecting marine life; #6: Clean water and sanitation, and #14: Life below water. The goals were put in place as suggestions to nations that want to participate in bettering the environment and the future. The only consequence for failure to participate would be shame from the international community. Another appealing option, particularly for the average person, or the average high schooler, is donating to 4Ocean, an American company. The company was founded by two young men, Alex Schulze and Andrew Cooper, in 2017. The idea for their company was born when the men took a trip to Indonesia, with the ambition to surf. However, their trip morphed into an investigation into how to solve the ocean’s trash problem. Their solution was to create a bracelet made of recycled materials,

National News

r Environment Reusable Replacements for Plastic By: Matthew Fiore

In a society where we are constantly using unnecessary plastic wrapping, it is important to realize that there are other options to replace plastic with. Although there is almost no way around buying a plastic case of strawberries in the supermarket, many other items we use on a daily basis can be replaced by reusable versions of them. In addition, some of these items we use regularly aren’t even necessary to our daily life and can simply be avoided. This would help reduce the amount of plastic that we consume globally. To start, you can replace every single plastic water bottle you buy at the store with a reusable one. The amount of unnecessary plastic that is wasted from making these bottles is extraordinary and needs to be cut down. In an era where recycling is actually on the decline, we must face the reality that everything we use is not vital to our daily lives. If you are worried about having dirty water to fill your reusable water with, you can buy a filter and attach it to your sink to ensure that the water is just as clean as the water you would ordinarily drink out of a plastic bottle. There are even reusable bottles that have filters built

into them! Reusable bottles come in both plastic and metal and, as long as they are reused, it does not matter which you decide to use. Either way, you are cutting down on your plastic use, which makes the world cleaner. This option both reduces and reuses! Another item that we use every day, or at least every week, is the plastic bag. With certain areas of our country charging for them and other countries completely banning them, it is clear that they have been recognized as a danger to our planet. Having them readily available at any store makes it worse as we can take as many as we want without anyone caring. Instead of using these toxic bags, we can decide to use reusable bags instead. In many sizes, designs and materials, these bags are both convenient and stylish, making them an even better choice than plastic bags. Plus, by using them, we can cut down on plastic production and plastic waste, again making our earth a little greener. Finally, some items we just don’t need to use. Plastic straws are wasted plastic because they are used once and never again. They take millions of years to decompose and are destroying the environment ev-

ery day. Plus, when you think about their importance in society, there is no need for them whatsoever. If you like using straws, try using a paper one; they work just as well, but easily decompose. Other items we don’t need to use include individually wrapped items, and plastic wrapping for food in the grocery store. If you have the choice of individually wrapped or not, choose not. These items waste a ton of plastic that just harms the earth. The more of them you buy, the more that producers make. In addition, choosing to not use plastic wrapping bags for produce can help reduce the amount of plastic as well. These can also be replaced by reusable bags, so there is no need to bother taking a new one for every single fruit and vegetable you buy. By working together nationally or even worldwide, changes can be made to protect the earth. When will they happen? Time can only tell. Small changes have been coming into play in the recent years, but if more are not enforced, and if we choose convenience instead of environmental responsibility, the earth may be in even worse condition in just a matter of years.


National News

Flooding in Venice By: Julia Remick

Venice is a collection of 118 islands connected by a series of canals and bridges, surrounded by the Venetian Lagoon. Venice is a popular tourist destination, with historic art and architecture. However, recent climate change reports have warned that this beautiful Italian city will be underwater within a century if flood defenses are not installed and climate change is not quelled. The city faces frequent periods of acqua alta (high tide) where water floods the city. To combat this, the city has raised sidewalks and entryways; however, not much more can be done without compromising the architecture of

the city. In 2003 the MOSE project was proposed. This projected involves a series of 78 storm gates to be employed during times of extremely high tide. The estimated date of completion of this project was in 2011, but the expected completion date has been moved to 2022. Even with an estimated completion date 3 years in the future, most Venetians are still skeptical of completion by then. The project has been delayed largely due to rampant corruption, including the arrest of the mayor on accounts of bribery. Venetians and the larger scientific community have other issues with the MOSE project, including the environmental impact

of the system on the lagoon. The system could potentially cause further damage to an already damaged ecosystem, as frequent cruise ships are further eroding the island and disrupting wildlife. The MOSE project also fails to confront the heart of the issue: climate change. The rising sea level in the Venetian lagoon is largely caused by global warming. Currently, the Venice sea level is rising by 2.4 mm a year. The rising sea level in conjunction with the sinking land mass means Venice, the historic, culturally rich city, is in grave danger.




National News

United States Government Shutdown By: Alexandra Kucich

With every day that passes, we face more choices between achieving successes and making mistakes - choices that future generations will judge us by, choices that will decide our legacy as a nation, choices that might be easier to make in the spur of the moment than they are to reverse in the aftermath. From December 22, 2018 to January 25, 2019, the United States government was shut down, leaving us grappling with the issues that caused the shutdown and fumbling more decisions that have the potential to prevent another. So why was our government at a standstill for 35 days, presenting us with the longest shutdown in the history of our nation? In two words, the wall. In this past November's midterm election, the Democratic party won the majority in the House of Representatives, effectively winning back a voice in Congress for Democrats, but establishing the fact that the second half of President Trump's term will be riddled with internal tensions. While the majority of Republicans in Congress agree with President Trump that adequate funding should be provided for the border wall by the federal government, Democrats vehemently disagree. The House refused to pass a spending bill allowing for the allocation of 5.7 billion dollars - a sum that could fix Flint, Michigan's water crisis, pay for 571,715 in-state college tuitions, build four new state of the art VA hospitals, or fund countless other projects - to the construction of 234 more miles of fencing at our southern border. In the absence of an approved appropriations bill that would fund the operations of the government throughout the 2019 fiscal year, the shutdown began. https://pmcvariety.files.wordpress.com/2017/12/us-capitol-2.jpg?w=1000

For a national event of such magnitude, the shutdown managed to achieve little to nothing. No side acquiesced, no ground was gained or lost for either party. In fact, the shutdown proved to be a major detriment during its 35 excruciating days. Over 800,000 non-essential government workers - including employees of the census bureau, ICE, federally funded institutions like national parks, and many other federal operations - as well as countless essential workers, went without pay during this period of longer than a month. Some sought second jobs to stay afloat as they struggled to pay rent or mortgages, or to keep food on the table, and essential workers had an especially difficult time earning money elsewhere while still being required to work. And while working under the promise that they would receive their due pay when the government reopened, it was doubtless in the back of many workers’ minds that they still hadn't been fully reimbursed for their labor during the 2013 shutdown. Yet for all this hardship, the most that House majority leader Nancy Pelosi managed to negotiate with President Trump and Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell? That more negotiations would take place if the government reopened. Thankfully, such negotiations did begin at the conclusion of the shutdown, and the government reopened permanently. The alternative, a second shutdown, frightened both parties for a host of reasons. For one thing, President Trump had threatened to declare a state of national emergency, which would have granted certain emergency powers. The secretary of the Army would have had the author-

ity to divert military resources to civil defense projects, and the secretary of defense would have had the ability to begin military construction projects outside the authorization of ordinary law. If President Trump were to have encouraged members of his Cabinet to take such measures, he could have diverted government funding to the building of a border wall and completely usurped the authority of Congress. Such an action would have brought into question a president's constitutional right to overpower the rest of the government, although similar actions throughout history have not tended to be easily defendable in a court of law after the fact. Any president circumventing Congressional approval is certainly cause for fervid debate, stronger tensions, and a deeper party divide. With the permanent reopening of the government, however, such a nightmare scenario was avoided. In the end, President Trump made a request of Congress, not a demand, to appropriate several billion dollars more than originally proposed for the border wall. He aims to have secured the wall’s place in the budget before the 2020 election, which gives our representatives just a bit more time to democratically and calmly reach a solution. However, a decision has not yet been reached and tensions still run high. If anything, we should take this as a moment in history to reexamine our attitude towards open debate and the necessity of negotiation. Without discussion and decorum, who knows whether another shutdown looms on the horizon before 2020?


National News

Saudi Arabia’s Internet Issues By: Allison McDonald


On March 7th, 2019, 36 countries, including all 28 European Union member states, signed a statement in the United Nations Human Rights Council denouncing Saudi Arabia’s record of human rights abuses. Since the Iranian Revolution in 1979, Saudi Arabians have been dominated by hard-line Wahhabi traditions enforced by a tyrannical government. Wahhabism is an ultra-conservative religious movement which, in radical practice, advocates against gender equality and other unalienable rights. It was only June 24, 2018, when Saudi’s current crowning prince, Mohammed Bin Salman, granted women the right to drive. Although Bin Salman poses as a somewhat progressive figure to the world, his arrests of influential women’s rights activists (who remain in jail today) prove otherwise. In fact, his involvement in the assassination of vocal journalist Jamal Khashoggi is highly suspected internationally. Saudi Arabian dissident, Jamal Khashoggi, was a talented journalist known for covering controversial stories, such as the rise of Osama Bin Laden and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. However, he is now the subject of this controversy. On October 2nd, 2018, Khashoggi went missing after visiting the Saudi consulate in Istanbul: where he planned to get divorce papers to allow him to remarry. Turkish audio recordings, security camera footage, and an influx of unnerving evidence provided by various sources all support allegations that he had actually been assassinated by a team of high ranking Saudi government agents waiting inside the consulate.

Shortly before his death, Khashoggi had fled Saudi Arabia in 2017 and went into a self-imposed exile after decades of service as an advisor to the government and royal family. From then on he actively critiqued his country’s government and their repressive policies in an American newspaper, The Washington Post. Khashoggi was aware of the risk involved in his work, and feared being arrested on the account of a crackdown on dissent overseen by Mohammed Bin Salman. Yet Khashoggi was also aware of his influence and refused to disregard the opportunity he had to make a difference, thus he continued to publish bold, dauntless stories. Unfortunately, Khashoggi didn’t live to see the impact of his life’s work, which would be honored in TIME magazine, naming him “Person of the Year” in 2018. Originally the Saudi Arabian government denied all accusations of their involvement in the journalist’s death. However, overtime, state television claimed Khashoggi had in fact been murdered on a “rogue operation” on the orders of a government official. As well as a Saudi public prosecutor admitting the month after the tragedy that “Khashoggi was given a lethal injection after a struggle and his body was dismembered inside the consulate after his death”. So far, eleven people have been charged for assistance in the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, including four nationalists known to have close ties to the crown prince. The journalist’s murder has been internationally condemned, and has caused diplomatic crises

between Saudi Arabia and many of its Western allies. Since Khashoggi’s death, Germany, Finland, and Denmark have completely canceled their arms trade with Saudi Arabia, while the U.S., Canada, France and the U.K. have taken more lenient action and instead levied sanctions against the 16 alleged suspects involved in the assassination (excluding prime suspect Mohammed Bin Salman). American President, Donald Trump, has been predominantly criticized for his indifferent stance and continued relationship with the Saudi prince, now suspect. Trump argues that the best interests of the American economy override a need to end relations with a significant trade partner over foreign human rights abuses; moreover, the President and his administration neither officially condone nor reprimand Bin Salman’s involvement in the death of Jamal Khashoggi. Critics argue that the undeniable evidence pointing towards the prince as the coordinator of the assassination holds the American government responsible to make an explicit statement on the matter and to take direct action to defend the core American value which has been threatened by Khashoggi’s death: freedom of speech. While debates concerning Saudi Arabia’s position in world affairs and the United States’ responsibility as a world superpower to take decisive action continue, one pressing question begs to be answered. When does inhumanity abroad overshadow domestic security? When does an international moral responsibility outweigh national stability?

Community News

Chorus Field Trip to Washington, D.C. By: Lana Hess

This past March, Mr. Mayo, Ms. Conte and the Garden City High School choral groups had the privilege and honor of traveling to and performing in Washington, D.C. The whirlwind trip started off in D.C. on Friday, March 22 with an escorted tour to the historic Ford’s theater. The students were brought into the balcony and learned all about the evening Abraham Lincoln was assassinated and its aftermath. The next stop of the tour was at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History. Everyone had a great time visiting exhibits, such as the flag that Francis Scott Key looked upon while completing the text for the Star-Spangled Banner, one of George Washington’s military uniforms, Dorothy’s Ruby Red slippers, and Julia Child’s kitchen. One particularly fascinating exhibit were the dresses from the current and former first ladies. Julia Bedian said “I thought it was cool to see that the First Ladies wore those dresses and that they were right in front of me.” Right after the museum, the chorus headed over to the Supreme Court building, where they toured the great hall, the court room and learned all about the Supreme Court and the architecture of the building. All of the students were very impressed that they were sitting directly in front of the bench where the nine justices sit. The day concluded with a dinner cruise aboard the Spirit of Washington D.C. along the Potomac River. The students from

Garden City were joined by students from Mississippi. A great time was had by all! On Saturday morning the day started with a trip to Howard University to meet Dr. Eric Poole for a master class. He was incredibly dynamic and the students benefited from his unique perspective on music. Directly from the clinic, the chorus travelled to the Lincoln Memorial to perform. Chamber Choir, Concert Choir, Women’s Chorus and vocal jazz ensemble each performed 3-4 songs on a beautiful, sunny day that was enjoyed by parents, alumni and tourists alike. Julia Bedian said “It was a nice bonding experience!” After the performance, the entire group was able to enjoy lunch at the Pavilion Café in the sculpture garden at the National Gallery of Art. The next stop was the National Archives where students were able to explore two floors of exhibits including one that provided the opportunity to view the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. The students were then treated to a guided bus tour of the Washington memorials, ending at the Federal Reserve and the U.S.

Capitol Building. Whew! What a day!! On the last day of the trip, the group made one more stop at Mt. Vernon, George Washington’s family home. Students were able to tour the mansion and see various artifacts including the Bastille Key– given to George Washington by the Marquis de Lafayette. They were then able to explore the grounds, and view for themselves George Washington’s tomb, the blacksmith shop, the greenhouse and the kitchen. All of the students enjoyed D.C. and learning about our country’s history firsthand. Mr. Mayo said, “we feel like the students had a great cultural experience, but they also experienced different elements of history and government while also having a good time.” The trip and its success were made possible by the combined efforts of the music department, the Friends of Music and all of its supporters and chaperones. Congratulations on a terrific trip and performance!


Community News

Physics Club By: Brandon Noll

A new, fascinating club has emerged at Garden City High School, and that is Physics Club. The goal of Physics Club is to expand upon the concepts taught in both regular and honors physics with entertaining projects and demonstrations. Though the club is mainly targeting current and past physics students, students who have yet to take physics can also attend

meetings and participate in projects. Currently, Physics Club is working on building a small water-pressure-powered rocket that will hopefully go hundreds of feet in the air. It is only the first of many projects. The ultimate goal of Physics Club is to build a membership that spans all grades of Garden City High School, not just the current Physics Class. With membership

encompassing all grades, the life of Physics Clubs will last well after the current presidents and officers of the club graduate from Garden City High School. If the idea of having a BLAST with physics piques your interest, then you can join the club by going to room 205 after school on Thursdays.

Alumni Return Day By: Julia Remick

During Alumni Return Day at Garden City High School, students from the graduating class of 2018 were invited to a panel to discuss with current high school seniors and juniors their experiences at college. Students from universities such as Fordham University, Marist College, Clemson University, Richmond University, Hofstra University, and many other schools were represented. Throughout the course of


the discussion, the college freshmen honestly shared both their struggles and successes in college. They urged current high school students to continue working hard during senior year to facilitate an easier transition. Students also discussed the process of finding a roommate, time management, and the transition towards independence. These high school graduates also reassured anxious seniors that Garden City High School

leaves its students well prepared for the college workload. For current high school seniors, Alumni Return Day is a helpful and informative event that provides a time for questions to be answered. For current college freshmen, this event allows them to share their sense of pride both for their new universities and hometowns.

Community News

Quiz Bowl 2019

The Annual Tournament Held by the Mad Titan of Quiz Bowl Himself! By: Aidan Padala For a growing number of GCHS students, each February marks the beginning of an epic pursuit for trivia glory. The Intramural Quiz Bowl tournament is a thrilling team based battlefield of knowledge and wits held every year by The Mad Titan of Quizbowl himself, Mr. O’Hagan. Teams consist of three students and one faculty member, all with the common goal of earning their place upon the plaque of past Quiz Bowl victors. The tournament involves a group stage in which teams are split up into rooms, each with three teams. Then after 100 questions, ranging from history to music and everything in between, the scores are tallied. Key to the immense excitement of the competition is the turnaround question.

Each session contains a question that allows groups to wager points and turn the tide of the game, but at the risk of a crushing setback if the answer is incorrect. Oh and did I mention teachers are unable to answer these already high pressure questions? Three high stakes rounds take place and the top teams move on to the semifinals where the winner of those three remaining rooms reach the Grand Finals held in the library. In the 2019 tournament, the finals were a showdown of science as Team Esposito, Team Gordon and Team Dunleavy fought it out for the championship. All three teams had impressive scores in previous rounds to boast; it was poised to be a hard fought contest. 150 questions

later, the dust finally settled and Team Dunleavy, with team members Lukas Lambraia, Aidan Padala and Greg Buckman, prevailed and claimed the prestigious title of Quiz Bowl Champions! A tight game throughout, the victor was determined by the final turnaround question, which all teams answered successfully. Team Dunleavy finished with 62 points while Team Esposito and Team Gordon trailed just behind with 61 and 60 points respectively. Truly an amazing experience for all involved, without a doubt Quiz Bowl is the best way to have a good time competing with friends and even learn a thing or two along the way!


Community News

ECHO Newspaper Field Trip By: Matthew Fiore

On Wednesday, December 12, 2018, the members of ECHO went on a field trip to Hofstra’s Student Press Day. This event was a chance for high school students to learn more about journalism and reporting news. To start, students listened to a panel discussing the role of social media in the modern news, and students were able to ask questions about the discussion before the next panel arrived. This panel was a group of Hofstra students and staff

from the journalism department who explained what being a journalism major is like. The panel also shared their experience in reporting on the 2016 election, when a TV production studio joined them to create an overnight broadcast of the election’s status. This part of the event was very informative as it showed the opportunities and course of study for journalism majors. After the two panels were finished, students were able to visit the journalism building

at Hofstra where smaller discussions were held in different rooms about more specific topics in journalism, including news via social media and sports reporting. Overall, Student Press Day was an enjoyable experience. It provided insight into what the journalism field is like and how to detect fake news. All of the ECHO members who attended the field trip learned something of value from the event and hope to return again next year.

All-County Music 2019

By: Mary Grlic, Corinne LaFont, & Jenny Zheng A few weeks back in January, All-County was held for many students from elementary through high school. Musicians all across Nassau County were selected for one of the three ensembles, chorus, band, or orchestra, and placed into a division based on their age and grade. Their acceptance is based on their NYSSMA solo score from the previous spring season. NYSSMA is an evaluation of young musicians


across New York State. Students have the opportunity to perform a solo piece on their desired instrument or vocally from levels 1 through 6. All-County allows for some of the most talented students to join together based on one similarity: music. Multiple students from Garden City participated in the festival, attending three rehearsals from 4:00 PM to 8:00 PM. Their hard-work culminated in a concert

at the LIU Post Tilles Center. The Division IV students, grades 9 and 10, performed pieces by notable composers such as Gustav Holst, Ludwig van Beethoven, and Leonard Bernstein. Overall, all of the students involved had an enjoyable, educational experience and were honored to be involved in such a program!

Students who were accpted into All-County are Lara Abruzzo, Tyler Barbaro, Julia Bedeian, Emma Benzinger, Jack Brita, Andrew Burns, Anteng Chen, Francesca Ciccone, Enzo Cupani, Alexandra Davidson, Nicholas DeIeso, Julia DiCaprio, Caroline Feryo, Elizabeth Fetherston, Sarah Fetherston, Matthew Fiore, Audra Fitzgerald, Caroline Flanagan, Eva Gaberlavage, Emma Gardner, Mary Grlic, Marybeth Kane, Corinne Lafont, Christina Levi, Katie Lew, Jason Luo, Molly Madigan, Rebecca Melkonian, Ryan Murphy, Emma Nagler, Gianna Palmieri, Gilbert Puentes, Avery Ross, Paul Stein, Garret Treanor, Olympia Van Blenis, Sarah Wu, and Jenny Zheng.

Student Spotlight

Student Spotlight: Garrett Treanor By: Lana Hess

High school senior Garrett Treanor, recently completed his solo album entitled Don’t Let Go this winter. The album is a compilation of future bass/electronica music and is comprised of 8 tracks. Garrett describes future bass as, “a sort of sub-genre of electronic music that is normally characterized by synthesizer instruments playing soft square waves, samples of voices, happier sounding timbre and richer jazz inspired cords.” It’s as simple as that! Garrett composed and performed all of the music himself in an organic, fluid process. He stated “A lot of the music was composed as I was recording it, so the process of composing, recording and producing kinda’ ended up melding into one.” His 2 favorite songs on the album are, “I Can’t Play the Drums, But Maybe You Can Teach Me” and track #8, “Your Mind.” These are his favorites because he had the most fun composing them. Of “I can’t play the drums,” Garrett said that the song “just fell into place so

well when I was writing it, and every note felt right!” Composing the track “Your Mind” was almost the opposite, in that the overall process took two years as Garrett tried it in various genres. Garrett commented that, “watching the song grow and evolve with me through its different styles as I’ve grown older has been really fun for me. I also really love the song because of the end of it, where, I have the chorus of voices singing but they all sound synthesized to fit with the style of the album.” In this manner, Garrett achieves a synthetic quality to an otherwise organic instrument like the voice. Speaking of instruments, Garrett plays over 10 different instruments and he is always looking for opportunities to learn new ones! His collection includes voice, piano, bass ukulele, harmonica, banjos and more! In speaking with Garrett, he stated that “electro-future bass style of music is only found in a few places,” and he was inspired by his

favorite album: Bo Ew Pale Machine. Garrett also stated that music director, Lawrence Tremsky, who was honored on March 11, 2019 at the Garden City High School Tri M induction ceremony, is the biggest musical influence in his life. He stated that, “Larry’s passion and enthusiasm for music is a real inspiration.” Garrett has been singing with Tremsky for 9 years. Garrett commented that, “Larry is an amazing teacher, who really understands not just music, but also people and how to work with them.” In the fall, Garrett plans on attending college with a major in audio engineering, which is essentially half music and half physics. He stated that “while I am not attending any performing schools or going for a performance degree, I still plan on performing and creating music in one way or another throughout my college career.” Congratulations to Garrett on an incredibly bright future!



Interview with the

Rifle Team Q: Rifle is a sport that people typically know less about than I think they ought to. Could you give me an overview of what your training, season, and matches are like?

By: Alexandra Kucich

Mrs. Dubuke: Our practice starts the first week of November and comps are from December to February. A match consists of six team members; each one shoots two targets for a total of two hundred points… We shoot an air rifle, which shoots a lead pellet. The top four scores out of six count. And then, there are eight teams in the league, and we shoot each team twice. Q: Like any other sport, rifle is a demanding activity that involves a major time commitment. What are some of the payoffs of investing A typical rifle target sheet with ten such time and effort into honing this graded targets and two practice, or “sighter” targets circled in the skill? center. The very center of each Madison Matarazzo: It helped me target is worth ten points, and each ring outside of that denotes a point with taking tests. deducted. With ten graded tarKat Jushchenko: There are plenty gets and a maximum of ten points of scholarships you can apply for each, the sheet is scored out of one and you can meet a lot of great peo- hundred. ple. It helped me control my emotions and breathing rate. Giuseppe Schettino: It teaches you patience and discipline. Mrs. Dubuke: It’s an unusual sport, and that’s something where if you put it on a college resume, it sticks out.


Q: What are some of the major successes you’ve enjoyed this season? Kat: I qualified for the Junior Olympics qualifiers, I’ve been invited to shoot at West Point, and as a team, we’ve increased our score by ninety points. We’ve doubled our wins from last year. Mrs. Dubuke: And that’s with new shooters! Q: How do you feel going into your final meet of the season? Mrs. Dubuke: Hopeful, because we’ve improved over last year. Kat: Sad, because the season’s ending. After the last match of the year, I asked Kat Jushchenko to describe to me how the team fared and to share any final reflections on this season. Kat: It was probably the most demanding and suspenseful match of the season, and we lost by just two short points. It was a significant improvement from last year and hopefully next year more people will join the team. We fought hard to get our wins and in the end, it was a very rewarding year and a great way to end the season.


Girls Varsity Basketball By: Claire McGuire

What a year for the Garden City Girls Varsity Basketball team! The Trojans, with an overall record of 15-5 in their A:1 conference, had a dominating season with several notable achievements. Despite this being their first year in the A:1 conference, the girls went nearly undefeated with only two regular season losses and became co-con-

ference champions. All of Garden City’s impressive seniors worked to better both themselves and the team throughout the season. Grace Kelly scored her 500th career point in January, and Yasmine Worrell and Julia Peppard received awards at the dinner on March 27th at Crest Hollow Country Club for their outstanding work during the season. Joining

them will be junior Jaime Murray, junior Claire McGuire, and sophomore Kelly Brennan. As a result of the several returning underclassmen, the team hopes to continue to win next year and the years following. The Garden City Trojans hope to see you at some of their games in winter of this upcoming school year!



Boys’ Fencing By: Jimmy Wu

On Saturday, February 9th, the Garden City Boys Fencing Team scored bronze in the county, closing the season with a brilliant 10-3 record. With coach Oliver’s guidance, many fencers from the boys team were able to achieve great accomplishments; at the individual county championships on February 2nd, an all day fencing event held at Great Neck North High School, junior foil captain Zach Ortiz won the gold medal. Junior Sebastian Vazquez also performed well and placed 5th in the county. On the saber division, junior Logan O’Grady took home the bronze and became one of the top 3 fencers in the county. Under the influences of these brilliant fencers and other talented veterans, within only 3 months,

our first-year-members on the boys team were able to improve rapidly and took home nearly one third of the medals at the Underclassmen Event at Oyster Bay on February 7th: freshman Joe Armstrong won the bronze medal in foil; freshmen Nicholas Michael and Alex Pasqualina placed 3rd and 2nd in the saber division; sophomore Aidan Rosenblatt and junior Jimmy Wu both achieved the epee’s bronze medals. Throughout the season, our only two current senior captains on the boys team, Christian Durante and Bryce Morrison, perfectly illustrated leadership through their actions. Their influential personalities always cheered the team up at practices or meets, making us feel stronger and work harder. Although

they are graduating, their influences on this team will remain and push us forward. We wish them great success in college as well as in the future. Nevertheless, achieving 3rd place in the county does not mean that we are satisfied and will stop practicing. “There is a lot of potential in us that we can work on and improve,” according to Coach Oliver and Coach Appelman. “Go fencing off season and keep working hard at practices next year and we will definitely become much better than we are now.” The Garden City Fencing Team under the coaches’ teaching is improving expeditiously; it is very exciting to look forward to the team’s great performance next year.

Sebastian Vazquez mid lunge during his foil match

Christian Durante scoring a touch



Girls’Fencing By: Mary Foxen

The Garden City Girls Varsity Fencing team has been on a remarkable journey over the past three years. In the 2016-2017 season, the team had lost more than half of their starters and their coach just after winning the 2016 county championship. It would be impossible to repeat such a victory against Great Neck South without intense team reconstruction. With the joining of close to ten freshmen and a few sophomores, the starting positions were filled, and the team held great potential. Over the next two seasons, the team expanded their efforts, recruiting new girls to the team each year. With the recent recruitment of the experienced epee fencer, Coach Appelman, the team received even more guidance and

techniques on and off the strip for victory. In the past season, the team climbed from close to last place to fourth in the entire county! Captains Rosie Lynch, Zoe Heath, Mary Foxen, Emma Van Dyke, and Alexandra Michael established the positive attitude and expectations for the season. Consistent determination and hard work from every fencer contributed to overall success against the competition. Garden City’s 1413 victory against the threatening competitor Cold Spring Harbor was just one of the few turning points in the season which pointed the team in the right direction. In playoffs for the county championship, again the close victory of 14-13 was secured against Valley Stream. With the win

from epee fencer, Gianna Buckley, in the final round, Garden City would be going back to the county championships for the first time in three years! Although the team unfortunately lost both matches at the 2019 county championship, the Girls Garden City Fencing team has made a remarkable come back. It is with such perseverance, character, and leadership that every member of the team has contributed to Garden City’s accomplishments, and they will continue to be instrumental for the future improvement of the team.




By: Emily Kerimian The autobiography Becoming by Michelle Obama follows the forty fourth First Lady from her childhood in Chicago, Illinois, to the awe filled moment when she learned her husband would be president of a modern day America. The book is an excellent eye-opener to those who have anxieties about what the world may have in store for them, as Michelle Obama herself could never have predicted what would happen the fateful day she agreed to accept the title “Mrs. Obama.� The pacing, flow, and diction of the novel are all very refreshing and easy to follow. The vocabulary is mildly challenging, but not vigorous, which results in a great book to read and relax with. The book reads like a story, and the anecdotes included feel like they were chosen in a heartfelt manner; they add to the


progression of the novel. The chapters are broken up, befittingly, into the different milestones of Michelle Obama’s life, and her perspective of what she became as a result of such milestones. This book is inspiring, even for those who do not share the same political views or values as the author. The tone, imbued with hope, is especially inviting to young people who may not even have an interest in politics. Michelle Obama delves into all sorts of important aspects of her life. She credits the men and women in her life who have shaped her into the woman she has become. Her humor is genuine, as is her honesty, as she describes her first encounters with Barack Obama, and how she grappled with the pressure of being exposed to the public eye for the first time in her life. She ad-

dresses the curiosity one might have about what it is like to be a resident of the White House. I highly recommend this book to young women and men who want inspiration on how to positively change the world they live in.


By: Melissa Ng

Mean Girls on Broadway is So Fetch! Personally, I am a big fan of Tina Fey, especially her movie Mean Girls. Recently, I saw the Broadway version of the movie and I have to say, she definitely outdid herself. This musical was amazing because of the message it conveys through the leading cast. Mean Girls is about a new student named Cady Heron who experiences the struggles of high school that can’t compare to her homeschooled life in Africa. She first encounters her soon to be best friends, Janis and Damian, who have a dirty past with the three popular girls of high school, Regina George, Gretchen Wieners, and Karen Smith, who are considered the “plastics”. The new three best friends embark on a “Revenge Party” to knock the almighty Regina off her throne. The musical explores how easy it is to revert to being a mean girl even when trying to do the right thing. This leads to my

love for the message it conveys. Throughout the play, the message of being yourself is prominently shown. Cady transformed from being a homeschooled new kid to a mean plastic to a genuinely nice person. At the end of the play, she realizes that it doesn’t matter what other people think about you; what matters is to be yourself. Each leading lady and Grey Henson portrayed their character beautifully. Ever since I saw the movie the first time, Janis has been my favorite character. I admired how she didn’t care about what other people thought about her and was just herself (adding onto the message of the musical). Barrett Wilbert Weed charmingly portrays this in the musical along with her impressive vocals. This is especially shown in one of my favorite songs sung by her, “I’d Rather Be Me”, as it appears during a time the girls need it most after feeling brought down by the Burn Book. Admirable performances were also made by Grey Henson, who plays Damian Hubbard, and Erika Henningsen, who plays Cady Heron. Grey Henson did a great job portraying the same character from the movie with his own unique flair. Erika also did a great job portraying Cady and her transformation throughout the musical. In addition, Taylor Louderman

did a stunning performance portraying the iconic character of Regina George with outstanding acting. Last but definitely not least, Ashley Park and Kate Rockwell represented the two plastics, Gretchen Wieners and Karen Smith, respectively, leaving people with a performance they will never forget. Although I didn’t mention everybody in the cast, they all put on a wonderful performance, including Jennifer Simard who played three characters (Mrs. Heron, Ms. Norbury, and Mrs. George)! Everything about this musical was so astounding, the book (Tina Fey), the music (Jeff Richmond), the lyrics (Nell Benjamin), and so much more. It gave the story a whole new depiction while staying true to the iconic movie. I will never forget this awe-inspiring musical I had the opportunity of seeing.



By: Melissa Ng Another jukebox musical to look forward to seeing! The Cher show is a fun way to revisit your favorite Cher classics. The show goes through the empowering icon’s life story, including the important events that made Cherilyn Sarkisian into a star. From the point of view of a 14 year old, this show was definitely a different experience from others I’ve seen in the past. I’m pretty sure many young Broadway lovers experience this, but I had many people look at me weirdly in the theater as I was one of the youngest people there. Some assumed I’d never heard the music before, hence the weird looks. Putting the experience aside, the musical was one of kind. This is a must see for all Cher fans and newcomers as well. I loved how the show represented each significant part of Cher’s life through her songs. The show also reminded me of Beautiful the Carole King Musical as both shows go through the life of famous musical icons. This musical is definitely a show you would not want to miss seeing.



Brooklyn Nine-Nine By: Lana Hess

Do you love shows like “The Office” or “Parks and Recreation”? Then “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” is the show for you! This show is full of funny and relatable characters whose daily lives amuse viewers week after week. This show is centered around a police precinct in Brooklyn and the detectives working there. The main detective, Jake Peralta (Andy Samberg), has a perfect record, but doesn’t always follow the rules. This all starts to change when Ray Holt (Andre Braugher) becomes captain. Dan Goor and Michael Schur created the show and FOX premiered it in September of 2013. After 5 successful seasons, NBC has picked it up and aired the first 3 episodes this January much to the excited anticipation of fans. However, while the

characters remained the same, the timing, charm and humor of the original show is lost in the re-translation. In fact, the third episode seemed to rehash an old story-line of Gina (Chelsea Peretti), the precinct’s tough-love receptionist, leaving the office for good. On top of that, NBC seems to be blatantly pushing the station’s own political agenda within the show. The characters and storyline were always pushing the envelope somewhat on FOX; however, it now seems that NBC has changed the tone of the show, gleaning ratings from political topics rather than relying on humor. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but this used to be a funny show. I sincerely hope that the producers find their

way back to the true heart of the show, which centered on friendship, community and laughter. I highly recommend binge watching seasons 1 through 5 and hope for true comedy in upcoming episodes.




By: Isabel Taveras The historical fiction novel Refugee, written by Alan Gratz, is a heartfelt story of three teenagers who try to survive during history’s darkest years. Josef is the oldest out of all the characters. After his father has been severely traumatized enduring a concentration camp, it becomes Josef’s job to take his father’s role. Isabel Fernandez is only eleven when Fidel Castro becomes the dictator of Cuba. Her family plans to leave Cuba on a handmade boat with her pregnant mother. Isabel is now carrying a big responsibility on their voyage to Miami that she did not once have as a child. Mahmoud is a Syrian boy whose family is fleeing Aleppo in search for a better life. Transitioning into their teenage years becomes harder and harder when they begin to have other people’s lives in their hands. Josef’s story begins in Germany, 1938. After being raided in his own home, Josef’s family is forced to flee Germany on a ship called St. Louis. Every Jew on board is finally relieved to be in safety, except for Josef’s father. He believes that everything is too good to be true and starts to get paranoid everywhere he goes. Josef starts to realize that his father is not the same person he looked up to anymore. However, his

Inspiration for Josef


mother’s optimism keeps Josef positive and encourages him to be better than his father. As his 13th birthday approaches, he is to be seen as an adult after his Bar Mitzvah. It is up to Josef to decide whether he truly wants to grow up quickly just to have the responsibility of an adult, especially during this difficult time. About 20 years later Cuba is dictated by Fidel Castro. After decades of corruption and abuse of power, Isabel’s story comes into play. In 1994, Castro allows Cubans to leave the country at their own will. The Fernandez family does not hesitate to prepare their belongings and leave. On a handmade boat, Isabel’s family leaves the Havana Harbor and head to Miami. The way there, however, is not as easy as they believe. They too have lost family members at sea while trying to escape Cuba. Now is the time for Isabel to realize that her family depends on her more than ever. Syria’s constant battle with itself is the most recent tragedy in history. In 2015, Mahmoud’s home in Aleppo is bombed which leaves no choice for his family but to leave Syria and search for a safer place in Europe. This voyage put his family in incredible danger multiple times but Mahmoud’s father’s optimism

Inspiration for Isabel

keeps everyone in line with reaching their goal. Mahmoud’s journey into his adolescent years will teach him what the the world is really like during war. Refugee reminds us of the epochs in our history that should never be forgotten. That even teenagers our age had to go through the constant terror of death and most did not live in ease for years. Even though Josef, Isabel, and Mahmoud were not real characters, children did sacrifice their lives to save others during these difficult moments. Therefore, it is up to us to make sure that history does not repeat itself so that fewer people can undergo the stress of being a refugee.

In author Alan Gratz’s writing process, he was inspired by the below photos when crafting his characters.

Inspiration for Mahmoud

Life as We Knew It


By: Isabel Taveras

The novel Life As We Knew It from the series The Last Survivors is written by Susan Beth Pfeffer. The life of a teenage girl named Miranda changes after a meteor hits the moon, displacing it from its axis. Just about everyone naively underestimates the moon’s significant role on Earth, which makes everyone completely unprepared for what’s to come. From unnatural tornadoes to volcanic eruptions, the world becomes a highly dangerous place and it is up to Miranda to decide whether to give up or to continue to hope for countless years to see the world the way it was before. Miranda Evans is a high school girl who turns sixteen on the day the moon is struck by a meteor. She is one of the best students in her school and, like many teenagers, she has a small circle of friends she trusts. Her friends and family plan to watch the moon being struck to cel-

ebrate her birthday. She expects to see something beautiful and unique as a sign of her new life as a woman, but she gets a feeling of something going terribly wrong. Pfeffer narrates how the moon is finally struck and the impact is so strong that one can see its angle tilt. Miranda was not wrong; that day was definitely the beginning of her new life. The author describes how what was meant to be a beautiful once-in-a-lifetime experience has now become a catastrophe. The tilt of the moon causes tides to rise abnormally high, creating a global flood and hurricanes the size of a continent. Volcanoes erupting simultaneously cause ash clouds to cover the sky, creating freezing temperatures and crop failure. She demonstrates how Miranda makes an effort to continue her daily life as a young adult despite all the hardships she is facing.

With this ceaseless turmoil, optimism is the only thing keeping Miranda’s family together. The author’s choice of this average character specifically tells readers that anyone can get through the toughest times. Miranda’s reassuring personality keeps her family calm and focused even when sickness, hunger, and thirst engulfs them. The message Susan Beth Pfeffer portrays is that little things in life can have a big impact when we lose them. One would never suspect that something as far away as the moon could have devastating influences on Earth. She also demonstrates the fact that life is very delicate and can easily be changed by uncontrollable circumstances. So the next time you see the moon, take a moment to be grateful for its protection and its important role on our planet.

“I never really thought about how when I look at the moon, it’s the same moon as Shakespeare and Marie Antoinette and George Washington and Cleopatra looked at.” - Susan Beth Pfeffer, Life As We Knew It


Reviews It’s that time of the year again, with the beautiful snow just melting gently into the grass, and many are excited to spend time with their families and friends out in the sun. With the ending of 2018 and the emergence of 2019, we would like to review the awful trends of last year and express what we think will be present in next year’s fashion. On a scale from best to worst, here are 10 trends that we hope to never see again:

Trending: New

The worst trends from 2018 a

By: Corinne Lafon

10: Plastic fashion

“It looks like a plastic bag...”

8: Camoflauge

“OMG! Gwen Stefani is going hunting! How cute!”

9: Fanny Packs

“What is the use of them anyway?”

7: Huge Sneakers “How can you even walk with sneakers that huge?”

6: Animal Prints

“I’m going to be a little harsh here. Animal prints are just tacky.”

5: Sheer Workout Pants “Why is her whole leg out?”

4: Yeezy

“Is it fake or not? The world may never know.”

3: Tiny Sunglasses

“They give no protection from the sun, what’s the point?”

2: Bike Shorts

“These are so tight that you probably couldn’t bike in them anyway...” 1: This may be constrovercial, but

we have to say it: Adidas Superstars Some honorable mentions include (but are not limited to): -Van -Monograms -Vineyard Vines -Cold shoulder -Converse -Bucket hats -Teddy jackets ;) -Lowriders


“These shoes are way too old to remain ‘trendy’ ”


w Years Edition

and the predictions for 2019!

nt and Mary Grlic

Ripped/ Distressed Denim

These trends have a special place in our hearts--as fashion crimes! So, what do we like? Here are the trends that we think are going to take the stage in the coming months:

Champion Timberlands Doc Martens

Tie Dye



High-Wasited Pants






Profile for Garden City Echo

Garden City Echo Spring 2019  

News from the students at Garden City High School!

Garden City Echo Spring 2019  

News from the students at Garden City High School!