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Thursday, October 24, 2019

Volume 110 Issue 2

Students explore interests in class Curriculum provides upperclassmen with academic freedom

by Tessa Voytovich @tessavoytovich A complaint made by many students about high school is that they are not studying exactly what they wish to study. However, what they may not know is that LT offers an Independent Study course in which curriculum is dictated by the student, for the student. “An independent study gives students the opportunity to go deeper into a topic of their own interest,” Director of Curriculum and Instruction Scott Eggerding said. “It teaches time management as well as independence.” Independent Study is considered an elective course. Each student with an IS has a teacher sponsor who advises and monitors the student’s progress. A student goes to a place such as the library or Discovery Center and conducts their research or works on a project on a topic of their choice. For instance, Claire Bradley ‘20 is researching organ transplants and the latest surgical transplant technologies. “Because I already took biology and anatomy last year, I wanted to have a medicine-focused and outside-the-box class during my senior year,” Bradley said. Bradley’s IS entails not only research, but hands-on experience. Later in the semester, she will be working with a nephrologist (kidney doctor) at RUSH hospital in Chicago. She will shadow and observe ethics committees focused on organ transplants. “My friend had a kidney transplant sophomore year,” Bradley said. “So, it is a bit personal to me. I’m also really interested in future technologies—the purpose of my IS is finding out the best ways to create the perfect match for organ transplants.” Some other seniors took their IS in a different direction. Three members of a robotics team, Tim Sands ‘20, Justin Squire ‘20, and Leo Levato ‘20, have an IS to work on their improving their robot for competitions. “At the end of last year’s [robotics club] season, we qualified for the state tournament but got crushed,” Sands said. “We realized we needed to spend more time on our robot, so we asked Mr. [Blake] Sauders if we could spend more time on it in an independent study rather than just two hours each Monday.” The three of them work together in the applied tech lab to construct and to program their robot.

“I definitely enjoy going to school a lot more because I know there’s something to look forward to,” Sands said. “It’s definitely made my school days a lot more enjoyable.” One student is doing an IS for the second year in a row. Last year, Braeden Norris ‘20 took a class that did not have enough students and turned it into his independent study along with another student. His physics teacher, Joseph Barker, approached him about using his coding skills to enhance the physics class curriculum. “My culminating project is me making a ton of lessons in terms of introducing programming into the physics department,” Norris said. “Ultimately, I want it to help understanding in physics classes.” Norris is an avid coder and has always been interested in computers. A summer internship, along with computer science classes and his IS, are preparing him for his future, he said. “It transfers to what I want to study in college,” he said. continued on page 5

Leo Levato ‘20 and Tim Sands ‘20 work on constructing their robot during their indepdendent study period. Their third team member Justin Squire ‘20 is not pictured (Voytovich/LION).

Local elementary, middle schools transition to updated standards-based grading system

Standards-based grading system in LT district offers new approach to learning

know specifically where they are in the pathway towards learning a specific skill.” At Field Park, the report card format is new, Burger said. by Anna McCormick The report card will consist of a two-page document with @annakmccormick a breakdown of each skill in each reporting area. Students Beginning this year, some local elementary and middle will receive a mark in that particular area, and there will be schools in Districts 101 and 102 began using the stancomments on their progress. dards-based grading system. This system focuses on proAlthough Field Park, Laidlaw and Forest Hills schools viding students with feedback to help them master specific have transitioned into standards-based grading, the middle standards. school of District 101, McClure Junior “We believe very strongly that High School has not. grades should be about the communi“[The committee] is not sure what we [Standards-based cation of progress and that kids, staff, will do with McClure,” Burger said. “We grading] is not about and parents should use grades to show want to make sure we are preparing our progress,” Field Park Elementary kids. We expect our kids to be able to self-worth. principal Ashley Burger said. grow and be applicable in any grading -Field Park Elementary In standards-based grading, stusystem.” dents receive a mark (a number rangIn addition to District 101 schools, principal Ashley Burger ing from one to four) for a specific all District 102 schools have gone in this learning goal instead of a letter grade, Burger said. A four direction, including Park Junior High School. District 102 demonstrates above and beyond understanding of the skill. schools have begun a pilot standards-based grading system “[Standards-based grading] is not about self-worth,” and plan to implement the revised program in the 2020-21 Burger said. “Feelings are often associated with letter school year. grades, but in standards-based grading students and parents At LT, many teachers have implemented the stan-

dards-based grading scale in their classrooms, Director of Curriculum and Instruction Scott Eggerding said. Many teachers in the science and math department feel [standard-based grading] better reflects how students are learning the different skills in the science area. “I started using [standards-based grading] because of a conversation at a math conference with a former administrator [from a different school district] who authored several math books,” physics teacher Joseph Barker said. “He suggested some articles to read and consider. After a fair amount of research and thought, it seemed a very logical approach.” In Barker’s class, students are able to retry specific skills on tests until they receive the mark that satisfies them, Erin Dickett ‘20 said. “If I did poorly, I had the opportunity to get a four [the top mark],” Dickett said. “It was stressful, though. It was time consuming to study for another unit while still studying for the previous one, but it was worth it.” The way teachers grade their students at LT is based on teacher discretion, Eggerding said. The classes currently using standards-based grading are experimenting with it. “Everybody has a different version of [standards continued on page 5

Look here for a preview of our second issue




Check out page 2 to see how your peers have made a difference.

Look at the grid on page 7 to find out your classmates’ favorite smells.

To discover new opportunities, look at page 3.

Is Hollywood still creative? Read point-counterpoint on page 8 and choose your side.

Flip to page 10 to read about the girls cross country team’s plans for the state meet.

Ever complain about being hot in school? Open page 4 to read about what could be done. Open up to pg. 16 to read a review of the new Joker movie. (see pg. 13-16 for more)

North Campus

Flip to page 5 to see what unique topics your peers are studying.

Did you register to vote at LT? What effect did it have on you? Find out LION’s take on page 9.

Turn to page 6 to read about the talents students at LT share with us.

100 S. Brainard Ave. LaGrange, Ill. 60525 South Campus

The Weirdos are an LT institution. Find out how this year’s Weirdos are promoting school spirit on page 11. Look to page 12 for a preview of the heat LT plans to rain down at the Devil’s football field.

4900 Willow Springs Rd. Western Springs, Ill. 60558


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Thursday, October 24, 2019

At LT, many clubs are dedicated to helping those in our school and community. The stories below highlight some clubs that do just that.

Social Action Project reconstructed Club reunites with new leaders, plans for future opportunities by Brianna Fonseca @briannafonsecaaa

Last year, Sadie Madden ‘21 embarked upon a challenge that stemmed from a simple Civics “Take Action Project,” (TAP) which later evolved into a partnership with three other girls in her class: Lizzie Patel ‘21, Abby Hennessy ‘21 and Alexandra Pontrelli ‘21. She had to undergo a rigorous process of trial and error to transform her ideas into a club, which led to the revitalization of Social Action Project (SAP). “Once you get older, you get more discouraged about making a difference because you feel your abilities are more limited,” Madden said. “SAP truly teaches that at any age you truly can make that difference. We’ve really gone above and beyond to show others what type of impact you can make in a club that allows you to volunteer and work with organizations that help so many people.” The club originally started in hopes of branching off of the Thirst Project, a nonprofit organization that works with youth to end the global water crisis, Madden said. They conversed about these issues in Civics class, where students undertook their own elaborate projects to make a difference within the community. This began a conversation between classmates on how to transform this idea into something greater. “We got denied originally when we first approached [student activities director Peter Geddeis] because our club was too specific and only focused on one charity,” Madden said. “We tried to change it a couple more times to get it approved, but we kept having the same problem. Eventually Mr. [Brian] Wolf approached us and told us there was a similar club in the past that hadn’t been active in a while, which is where we had our next idea.” SAP was originally known as Students Against Drunk Driving, sponsor of Social Action Project BrianWolf said. From there it was named Project Assist, which similar to SAP, focused on helping students. It later became Social Action Club, which was what it was before the girls got to it. “It’s an ever growing club that is constantly evolving, student centered, and stays local,” Wolf said. “It really encapsulates the community into a bigger picture and asks us how can we help it.” SAP has participated in many fundraisers and has organized multiple volunteering opportunities, such as cleaning up forest preserves, working hand in hand with BEDS—a homeless shelter—and serving and making food for other local shelters, Wolf said. On average, the club

Club helps start up businesses abroad Microfinance club partakes in humantiarian work

our loans.” The club plans to donate to a variety of different groups and people, Kostich said. This includes donating to Kiva and by Alfonso Fernandez Matching Grants: Kiva is an international @alf0nso_506 non-profit organization that helps expand During their freshman year, Andrew financial access to underserved communiHojjat ‘21 and Alexandar Kostich’s ties, and Matching Grants is a locally based ‘21 AP Human Geography class had a Rotary initiative group that micro-lends Rotary International sponsor arrive to donated money with later info about how discuss the organization’s microfinance it was used. “When you actually loan the money projects in multiple South African countries. Rotary International is a nonprofit through a one-on-one basis there is a risk organization that aims to spread peace of non-repayment, but we can cover risk by and solve poverty problems in countries purchasing an insurance on a loan,” Kostich said. “Through this, we through their busiwant to give our memness and communiI just want to help as bers the educational ty leaders. The two experience of what it’s decided in the class many people as we like to call and make to establish a club possibly can. this cohesive project with the same mointo a reality.” tive. From there, -Alexander Kostich ‘21 Their first meeting Microfinance club contained a couple of was formed. “With our club we want to contrib- motivated students collaborating on varute to Rotary’s goal. I just want to help as ious ideas to promote and begin fundraismany people as we possibly can,” Kostich ing, Kostich said. Hojjat and Kostich plan to said. “A lot of the communities or peo- double their members by promoting their ple that receive the fundraiser money club to other charitable clubs at LT. “Our idea is that if we’re able to get peoare in areas where they don’t have traditional banks or just can’t get qualified ple in the first meeting, then we can just direct the existing members to bring a friend,” for loans.” Microfinance club is a new club that Hojjat said. “I think if we could get those provides loans to people and small busi- like-minded people this would increase the nesses who cannot receive them from size and longevity of our club. There’s a lot banks, Kostich said. The humanitarian of people who have a lot of potential to succlub constructs fundraising projects for ceed in our club.” One of those like-minded people, lending money to people in need in order to provide funds for businesses and Thomas Keegan ‘21, is an active member in the club. The club can improve on comemployment. “In our club, smaller scale fundrais- muication because not a lot of people know ing means funding projects that’ll range what Microfinance means, he said. “Being able to communicate the definibetween $500 to $1,000 at the moment,” Kostich said. “Right now we are brain- tion of the club will improve the turnout storming fundraising opportunities and greatly and give our mission a longer lifescontacting insurance companies to cover pan,” Keegan said.

SAP poses for a photo after volunteering at “Poised for Success” (photo courtesy of Lizzie Patel).

has around 50 members in attendance who discuss and organize possible future events. “There has definitely been a change in focus with SAP,” Geddeis said. “The club has a wider range of issues it wants to get involved in and is not as single-idea focused as it was before, which are all beneficial and progressive things.” The club meets on every second and fourth Tuesday of the month in room D131 at 6:30 p.m. It is still progressing as they get ready to appoint new South Campus student representatives and plan for upcoming fundraisers such as a clothing drive, more community clean ups, and hopes to work with the Hinsdale Humane Society, Madden said. SAP hopes these volunteering opportunities will open more doors for students in the future.

Students participate in ‘trunk-or-treat’ Interact club starts volunteer work at animal shetler event

by Kaitlyn Joyner @kaitlyn.joyn Interact club members volunteered at the Boone Animal Hospital’s Fall Festival on Oct. 12 to participate in Halloween celebrations and give back to the surrounding community, sponsor Mary Decker said. Last year due to bad weather, the festival was moved inside. However, students still helped out by painting peoples’ faces, running games, assisting with the raffle, and giving out candy and snacks, vice-president Maya Albores said. The hospital, located at 4720 Commonwealth Ave.,Western Springs, reached out to Interact Club again in hopes of bringing six LT volunteers back to the fall fest this year, Decker said. “[The animal hospital visit] was really nice because it was like a community,” Albores said. “Everyone knew each other and [they] were so kind and thankful for our help.” This year, the volunteers contributed to the animal hospital’s annual “Trunk-or-

Treat” event, hospital practice manager Callie Neybert said. Interact club members decorated their cars and parked them in the animal hospital’s parking lot where they handed out treats for both attendees and pets. Volunteers also helped with face painting and decorating pumpkins, Neybert said. A costume contest, pumpkin painting, a parade, and other games were also a part of the festivities. “We [brought] a couple cars and decorate[d] them for LT and then let the little dogs and owners get snacks out of our trunks,” Decker said. Interact Club plans to continue their fundraising with an upcoming shoe drive. They also plan to connect with middle schools that feed into LT through the similar clubs at each school, president Tati Vidakovich ‘20 said. “We’re going to try to combine [Interact club and junior high clubs] and do an activity to try and get to know the younger kids better,” Vidakovich said. Interact club meets after school every other Tuesday of the month alternating between North and South Campuses.

Interact club smiles for a photo at the “trunk-or-treat” event (photo courtesy of Maya Albores).


Thursday, October 24, 2019

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Program provides experience in medical field for high schoolers

Dr. Rubin’s Mini Medical School program in Naperville gives opportunity to students interested in medicine by Tessa Voytovich @tessavoytovich

To students who think they want to work in the healthcare field when they are older, there is a program for you. Dr. Rubin’s Mini Medical School is an educational program designed to encourage high school students to pursue a career in the medical field. “The goal is to get students exposed to medicine who are either interested or unsure to help them decide whether they want to go into healthcare and give them the tools to succeed at it,” pediatrician and creator of the program Dr. Ira Rubin said. Students get the opportunity to do activities like organ dissections and injections, and also observe procedures. Additionally, they get to learn how to read x-rays, cast broken bones and more, Rubin said. LT students have been accepted to the program before. Claire Bradley ‘20 participated in both the winter session last year and an accelerated summer session. “I really liked all the hands on experiences we got to do,” Bradley said. “I got to intubate dummies and [Dr. Rubin] taught us

about all these surgeries. It’s an experience that you wouldn’t get just reading about.” The program is 20 hours long spread over six sessions. There are two options for sessions: Saturday afternoons or Sunday afternoons, starting the second week of January. The class is run at Edward Hospital centers in Naperville and Plainfield. Students come from all over the Chicago area, Rubin said. Acceptance into Mini Medical School requires an application with a short essay, counselor recommendation, a parent consent form, and a teacher recommendation letter. The deadline to apply is Oct. 31. “It’s a really nice experience in the field of medicine, so if you’re questioning or thinking you may want to do medicine, it’s a nice way to double check and confirm your suspicions,” Bradley said. For more information about applying, see Dr. Rubin’s website

Program Logistics


Edward Hospital in Naperville & Plainfield

Date: 1/12 - 2/22 or 1/13-2/23

Time: 2:30 to 6:00 p.m. or 1:30 to 5:00 p.m. compiled by Tessa Voytovich

Student-based tutoring now available at NC Peers Helping Peers program reinstated after two years with Ip’s return to NC

by Adriana Serrano @_adrianaserrano_

Alongside junior counselor Alex Ip, Mira Dedhia ’21 has been working on contacting and organizing upperclassmen who are willing to set aside time after school to tutor other NC students for Peers Helping Peers “We are trying to focus more on one-to-one support,” Ip said. “It’s almost like a role model.” After two years, PHP started up again the week of Oct.14 in the NC libraries after school, Monday through Thursdays, Ip said. The program is reinstated every two years when Ip returns to NC as part of his counseling duties. This year, there are approximately 14 peer tutors ready to be placed into their designated partnerships. Dedhia has recruited students who are willing to give up an hour or two a week, typically for a six-to-eight week period, to work privately with a student who is struggling in one or more academic areas, usually in the preparatory level. Ip refers to this program as an “academic intervention” that will not only promote success for those being tutored,

Student gets help from peer tutor (LION photo illustration).

but hopefully lead to some of the tutor’s model behaviors to rub off on other students, he said “We want to make sure that a student that is [receiving] this [tutoring] doesn’tfeel like this is another detention or that they are in trouble,” Ip said. “It’s because [the student is] showing that [they are] maybe academically at risk. We want to offer extra help that they can get that’s free, that’s right here, right after school.”

Ip wants to make it clear to both parties that this is absolutely voluntary, he said. He encourages that if tutors have the opportunity to be a part of any other extracurriculars, they should make that their priority. However, they do ask that once a partnership has been formed, both parties fulfill their commitment. If they do not fulfill their commitment, then the adult counselors will get involved and dissolve the relationship. Dedhia, Ip, and the other junior counselors work to set up the partnerships for success. They do this by pairing students of the same gender together, as well as accounting for the specific subjects the student will need tutoring. “I thought it’d be a cool opportunity,” peer tutor Sam Linares ’21 said. “It’s nice to help people out. I feel like if you can explain things and teach things, then you have a good knowledge and understanding of a certain subject.” Linares has been tutoring people on her own time. Therefore, when informed about this opportunity by a fellow tutor, Ella Fix ’21, she felt like this opening was no different from her usual doings and proceeded to contact Dedhia. Though currently occupied due to her involvement in cross country, Linares will help with math and Spanish homework after the season comes to an end.

German exchange students pay visit to LT 13 students from Stuttgart, Germany, experience American high school life

by Lillie George @georlill On Oct. 11, Spencer Frech ‘21 led his new friends from Stuttgart, Germany, through the doors of LT and into the atmosphere of an American high school. Ready for the day ahead of them, the three students made their way through the crowded hallways. “[In doing the German exchange program], we broaden our students’ global perspectives and also allow them to form lifelong friendships with kids from across the world,” German teacher Shannon Murray said. The previous day, 13 students travelled to the U.S. Each student was matched with a student from an LT German class, whose family was willing to host them for the two weeks they were here. Some students, including Frech, were assigned two students instead of the usual one to live with and guide through the school days, Murray said. LT host families also had weekends with their exchange student(s) to see football games, go downtown, or find other activities to partake in together. “[We want to show our students that] there’s more than our little Western Springs bubble,” Murray said. “You can’t just learn about [the world] in a classroom.” Students apply to become members of the German exchange program during their sophomore or junior year, Murray said. They do this by filling out an application form and completing an interview with Murray. If accepted to the program, students taking German at LT have the opportunity to host a student from Germany the following school year, Murray said. They also have the chance to travel to Stuttgart and stay with the student they hosted and their family. “I [was] very excited for the student exchange because I [was] interested to see how different our culture is from theirs,” Frech said. “I [was] also looking forward to [forming] some new relationships that could last for a long time.” During his time in the U.S., German exchange student Eric Gursch shadowed another LT host, Colin Cummings ‘21, and found American school to be very different compared to that of Germany.

“I really wanted to visit America because I had never been here before and wanted to experience [a new] culture,” Gursch said. Frech, Cummings and their classmates were responsible for guaranteeing that each and every exchange student felt welcomed at LT and comfortable at home in an unfamiliar place, Murray said. “We want to make sure they feel they are just as much a part of our LT family as everybody else,” Murray said. “Because I [had] such great students doing [the program], I [knew] that they [would do] a good job making sure that the German students [felt] included.” Murray also plans to take her students and their partners to the German exchange Main Event on Oct. 24, where German and American students will be able to hang out and play arcade games and laser tag. “I have really enjoyed [this experience] because everyone is so friendly and there are a lot of differences between here and home,” Gursch said. “My favorite part was definitely [attending] school here.” After a busy two weeks in America, the 13 German exchange students will say their goodbyes and leave for Stuttgart on Friday, Oct. 25. “Watching [the German and American students] interact with each other has been so heartwarming,” Murray said. “[For example] the welcome dinner on Tuesday was so memorable because none of the students were on their phones and instead were engaging with and including one another.” Frech and his classmates are looking forward to their visit to Stuttgart in March where they will have the chance to meet their German host families and become immersed in a new culture, they said. “I’m very excited to see [what] the classes my exchange students take [are like],” Frech said.

Pictured above LT students collaborated with the German exchange students on their first day at LT (George/LION).


compiled by Tessa Voytovich

From Germany to America...

Stuttgart is 4,402 miles away from Chicago


There is a seven hour time difference here


It is the sixth largest city in Germany


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Thursday, October 24, 2019

Misprinted APUSH Parents express AC textbooks replaced concerns at meeting

APUSH books missing pages cause student complaints

Board meeting gets big turn-out due to high temperatures in LT

History teacher Katy Newcomb was teaching American Studies when her class realized the AMSCO AP US History books were misprinted. The class was in the midst of learning about immigration as a preface to reading the book “The Jungle” when they discovered the textbooks were missing whole chapters, while others were duplicated. “It was a little confusing at first,” Newcomb said. “When I said turn to page 325, there was no page 325.” At the beginning of this school year, 10 AP US History classes, six Accel US History classes, and four American Studies classes received misprinted textbooks. Most of the students could exchange their books at the bookstore within the first few days, Newcomb said. Some teachers uploaded an old copy of the book online as a PDF where students could take notes on paper. However, most students use their textbooks to annotate, student Maddie Bloem ‘21 said. Many teachers check these annotations, but without a textbook, students were not able to write their annotations in them. Students also need to read chapters and annotate them to study for cumulative exams, such as finals and the AP test in May, Newcomb said. Since students

Books like this had missing pages as well as missing and duplicated chapters (Riordan/LION).

used the misprinted books to annotate, they would have to reannotate which would cause additional work. “I was a little worried about my annotations not being in the same book, but my teacher was super nice about it and told the people in my class to just continue as normal,” Bloem said. At first, they had some difficulty when dealing with the publishing company, trying to figure out what to do with the books, history teacher Kathryn Pieper said. The company wanted the books to be sent back in exchange for new ones, but the teachers did not want their students to lose their annotations. An agreement was reached, and around 70 new textbooks arrived in mid-September. “I am glad we received our new books,” Bloem said. “And we are able to keep our old books, so I don’t have to redo my work.”

by Quinn Riordan @quinnriordan

school board president, he said. The Board has been discussing the issue of AC for the past eight years, Cushing said. They have also taken many steps to by Claire Williams, Kate Ferrell & Sophia phase in more AC at both campuses, inSchultz cluding the installation of a chiller tower After connecting through a Facebook at North Campus that enabled the cooling post, roughly 15 parents attended a school of a large section of the building. board meeting on Sept. 16 to address their “[The school board] started replacing concerns about the lack of air conditionthe air handling units inside the classrooms ing at LT. because you can’t just get air conditioning “I think there’s strength in numbers,” in a four week period during the summer father to future LT time,” superintendent students, who wished Dr. Timothy Kilrea How long would they to remain anonymous, said. “It’s something said. “When more you have to really cytolerate the AC being out people are in there, it cle in for, not only for at their workplace? makes you more comcost but also for inside -a parent who fortable to be able to the facility.” attended the meeting speak out.” The Board is trying Mom to a current to gradually bring in LT freshman, Carrie air conditioning in a Jenke, represented the parents in her financially responsible way, Cushing said. address to the school board. She touched Architects estimate that it would cost $25 on topics such as the heat’s effect on a million to air condition both campuses. student’s ability to learn with the hopes Other expenses take priority over this that it would prompt the board to considlarge cost, such as new safety systems and er cooling at least the hottest areas of the new roofing at South Campus, Kilrea said. South Campus building. Following the meeting, the parents ex“I’d always heard that the classrooms pressed dissatisfaction and spoke of possiwere hot, but you do not entirely underbly attending future meetings to be a constand how bad it is until your daughter tinued presence. comes home sick, exhausted, and with “I would like to ask the same peohorrible, consistent headaches because ple who say it’s fine: ‘How long would it’s 90 degrees in her math classroom on a they tolerate the AC being out at their regular basis,” Jenke said. workplace?’” mother to LT students, who Her address drew an immediate rewished to remain anonymous, said. “Or sponse by school board president Thom‘How long would they wait to call for seras Cushing. Cushing had responded to vice if the AC went out at their house?’ a public statement two other times as They wouldn’t wait.”

Corral adds new features to ‘Friday Night In’ events Staff attempts to increase student attendence by Charlotte McLaughlin @cha_mcl In an attempt to expand the options for students already participating in the Corral’s “Friday Night In” events and to encourage more people to come, the Corral staff decided that they needed a few upgrades, LT and Corral staff manager Paul Godinho said. “The ‘Friday Night In’ program is fundamentally about tapping into what the students want to do,” Corral staff member Brian Thomas said. “We want to find ways to engage and support that.” These night events at the Corral first came to be in 2015 when multiple groups of students asked for places where they could play boardgames, videogames or just hang out, Thomas said. Godinho and Thomas agreed to create an event every Friday for just $5 per person from 6:30-10:30 p.m. to satisfy all of the student requests. “Largely, I think all decisions we make about the venue should work toward including more students and allowing them to feel they have a space focused on them and their interests,” Thomas said. For this reason, they have recently purchased two topof-the-line pinball machines, a shuffleboard, two new pingpong tables and new felt for all of the pool tables. They are

Pinball machines are just some of the new equipment the Corral bought to upgrade the facilities (McLaughlin/LION). also looking into upgrading their sound system for students to use and to help with possible future events like ‘Battle Of The Bands’, he said. “I hope to see [‘Friday Night In’] grow and for students to utilize the space and opportunity to pursue their own passions and interests,” Thomas said. “It would be wonderful to see this program continue to be able to support their activities.” Student turnout varies quite a bit based on multiple factors.


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By and large, they have around 15-80 students attend each week, Thomas said. In general, the more consistently they host the program, the more students show up. Therefore, returning from summer break usually lowers the turnout. “I am thrilled when the Corral feels full and exciting,” Godinho said. “But when the turnout is low, it offers me, Mr. Thomas and the rest of the staff the opportunity to engage more fully with the students who are there. I am afforded the chance to find ways to be present in the community the students work to create.” Students find the events to be a great way to further connect with their friends while playing games or even just sitting around to eat and talk, Josie Berger ‘20 said. “I always look forward to going to them because it helps keep you connected to your friends without worrying about making formal plans,” Berger said. “The best part is the community and how everyone who goes there gets along. I hope that more people will be able to find a sense of community there and know that there is room for everyone.” There are also hopes to create a Corral Board of Students to help plan various future events and functions of the Corral, Godinho said. “The building belongs to LT students,” he said. “It should be up to them to come up with great ideas that will be fun and beneficial to the entire school.”


Thursday, October 24 , 2019

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Senior serves as rep. Monster Bash offers live music to Board of Education and some Halloween costumes. It’s a very chill and social atmosphere that brings peoby Brianna Fonseca ple together to enjoy live music.” There is not a guarantee that this event @briannafonsecaaa will continue for the next couple of years, Unlike the usual Cupid’s Cabaret talent but due to the increased number of people show, which LT Choir board hosts annu- who showed up and the new Halloween ally, board members made a decision that theme that was presented, next year’s choir changed the overall dynamic of this year’s president will have to decide if it stays or musical event. They changed the usual Cu- goes, Lyda said. pid’s Cabaret event to LT’s first ever “Mon“It’s definitely a way for high schoolers ster Bash,” which took place Friday, Oct. 4, to go out for a night and enjoy themselves. in the Corral. This alteration was made after It’s almost like a club, but just a really fun, the variety show chose to move their event family friendly way to see your friends and closer to February. hangout on a Friday,” choir board president, “For the past six or seven years, the choir Lauren Tabour ‘20 said. “It’s really cool to department has sponsored a type of variety see everyone’s talent and passions presented show called in one night.” Cupid’s CabThe night aret,” choir ended up drawdirector John ing a variety Musick said. of audiences, “As the name Tabour said. might suggest, Each band and that event alsolo performer most always brought their happened own crowd as in February. well as provided Because the musical genres LT variety across the board. show moved “It really to mid Janugives you an ary, the choir Brenna Pardilla ‘20 sings with her band Araw at Gabi at opportunity to board thought Monster Bash in the Corral on Friday, Oct. 4 (Janik/LION). perform and that October practice singing would be a better time for this particular or playing in front of other people without choir event.” competition or judgment,” performer and The entry fee of $5 goes to the choir de- choir board member Alejandra Rodriguez partment’s general fund, Musick said. These ‘21 said. “It takes away the fear factor that help subsidize all sorts of events such as can hold back a lot of kids from performing students going on tour in London, special on stage and offers a fun positive spin.” events like professional concerts in the city, The new Halloween contests, decoraand sponsoring commission works by profes- tions, and fall themes that drew in a largsional composers. er crowd than last year will help the choir “It’s just a really fun night,” choir director board president and directors determine Constance Lyda said. “Think variety show, what type of events they want to host in the but in the Corral with tables, booths, snacks, following years, Rodriguez said.

Event replaces Cupid’s Cabaret

Traditional Grading - Connected to assessment methods - Norm-referenced - Achievement, effort, attitude & behavoir - Minimal support for reassessment - Average of assignments - Variation of assessment quality

Sophie Grabis ‘20 reports, discusses student progress by Claire Williams @claireswilliams118

Every month, elected school board members and administrators attend meetings to discuss topics such as school policies and the budget. Among them is Sophie Grabis ‘20, who is the current student representative to the Board of Education. Grabis has always been interested in student government but never had the opportunity to pursue it due to her commitment to soccer, she said. However, last spring she decided to pursue this long-time interest and applied on the school website. No prior experience in student government was necessary for this position. Since becoming the student representative to the board, Grabis has attended three meetings: one on the first day of school, another on Sept. 16 and her most recent on Oct. 21. “I love it so far,” Grabis said. “I think it’s really cool. I like that I have two different leadership roles. I’m leading the students, but I’m also kind of a leader in the Board of Education in which I interact with the administrators. It’s interesting because I have to change my leadership skills in order to fit my demographic better.” As student representative to the board, Grabis has many responsibilities. She must attend all board meetings and meet with superintendent Dr. Timothy Kilrea before the meeting to discuss the agenda and points of her report. The presentation of her report is an item on every board meeting’s agenda, Kilrea said. At the September meeting, Grabis detailed the successes of various sports teams, the upcoming theater show, and the overall atmosphere of the students as they adjusted to the school year. “Having a student representative to the [board] is a consistent reminder as to why we

Standards-Based Reporting - Directly connected to standards - Criterion-referenced - Achievement is the only factor - Most recent assessment information used - Various forms of data collected - Quality assessments aligned to standards

compiled by Anna McCormick

are here,” Kilrea said. “We base our decisions on doing what is best for the kids, and to have a student at the Board table supports this philosophy.” Grabis also acts as an intermediary between the board and students. During this school year, she hopes to create a survey to get honest student feedback on the board’s activities. The survey would ideally be accessible by logging onto an LT computer, she said. In the future, Grabis hopes to pursue a career in law, she said. “I feel like just being able to speak and have a professional voice and learning how to communicate with superiors would definitely help me in law school or a pre-law program,” Grabis said. Grabis’ term as student representative lasts through the school year. The next board meeting is on Nov. 18. “I think one of the most important qualities of these positions is hunger or desire to do the position and having an interest in acting as an advocate and representative for so many students,” principal Dr. Brian Waterman said. “So far [Sophie] is living that out.” Applications for next year’s student representative should be available in late March, Waterman said. Only current juniors can apply for this position.

Local schools shift from traditional grading to standards-based grading continued from page 1

grading,]” Eggerding said. “What is a three for one teacher may not be a three for another.” Although specific classes use this new grading, Eggerding does not see the whole school transitioning to standards-based grading. “The teachers who are using standards-based grading right now are very much evolving on how it works and how to make it work, but I don’t see us changing as an entire school,” Eggerding said. The reason for this is because it is hard to make the standards-based grading system consistent amongst a course or a school, Eggerding said. Teachers can have different interpretations and methods using the system. “I think there’s a lot of things we can do to improve grading that don’t require a standards-based system, and that’s something we’ll be focusing on,” Eggerding said. On the institute day on Oct. 15, faculty learned about alternative grading systems, including standards-based grading, and discussed ways in which grading could be improved at LT for next year.

Independent studies continued from page 1 Although these examples are science based, not all independent studies are in the science department. “They have been approved in art, music, creative writing, fashion design, and other areas where we do not have a third or fourth course in a sequence,” Eggerding said. In order to obtain an IS, a few criteria must be met. An IS application and contract must be signed by the student, the student’s parents, a teacher sponsor, counselor, subject division chair and principal. Prior to approval, the teacher and student must be interviewed by the division chair. Once approved, the student and sponsor must meet on a regular basis to design the curriculum together. “Students who want to do an IS really need to be focused,” Eggerding said. “This is not appealing to everyone.” However, students who are currently taking an IS seem to respond positively. “I’m enjoying my independent study so much and I wouldn’t have known I could do one without knowing someone who already had,” Bradley said. “I want people to know that they can do independent studies.” For more information regarding independent studies, see the academic program guide at

Sophie Grabis ‘20 displays her excitement about her position (Voytovich/LION).

Here are some examples of IS subjects students are working on.

Braeden Norris ‘20 Coding & Physics

Claire Bradley ‘20 Organ Transplants

Andrea Udziela ‘20 Effects of Vaping

Tim Sands ‘20, Leo Levato ‘20, Justin Squire ‘20 Robotics

Allison Keeley ‘20 Synthetic Drugs

compiled by Tessa Voytovich


Page 6

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Many LT students partake in unique activities that are put on display for the public. This page highlights some of those students who share interest and talents for others to enjoy.

Student pursues musical passions Allison Keeley ‘20 writes lyrics, produces original music, masters multiple instruments, plays live performances

Garageband on her computer. “Even when I’m sitting in class, I’m always thinking of lyrics and melodies,” she said. “When I go home from school the first thing by Olivia Janik I do is pick up my guitar.” The songwriter she looks up to the most @livjanik is Phoebe Bridgers, an indie rock musician When Allison Keeley ‘20 was 6 years old, she first discovered Bridgers’ music her sophshe saw a drum set in a Pottery Barn Teen catomore year while facing a writer’s block. alog and thought it would make her look cool, Bridgers inspired Keeley to keep writing she said. Twelve years later, Keeley has reached music in order to make her audience feel the over 25,000 listens on her SoundCloud. Her way she did when she first listened to Bridgmost recent song, “Somewhere in LA,” hit 1,000 ers, she said. plays within 24 hours of being published. “It’s the kind of music that you turn on “I feel really grateful for all the support I’ve and it sends tingles down your spine,” Keeley received through SoundCloud,” Keeley said. said. “I wanted to write music like that.” “I’ve had people listen from all over the world Keeley wants to continue playing music which is pretty amazing to think about.” for the rest of her life, she said. Right now, Keeley started writing original songs at the she is applying to colleges for songwriting. end of middle school, she said. Her inspiration On Oct. 4, she performed at LT Choir’s event, for music comes from a variety of music, movies, Monster Bash. She sang her original music, TV shows and even poetry. played the drums and performed “Country “Anything that can influence a thought or Roads (Take Me Home)” with Chris Vasti an emotion, that’s where my songs come from,” ‘20. Keeley said. “She leaves [me] speechless with just the Keeley’s song “Rock Garden,” which details sheer amount of talent she possesses,” Vasti the loss of a sibling to drug addiction, was influsaid. enced by the movie “Beautiful Boy,” a story She wants each listener to find their own about a son struggling with addiction. “Beautimeaning in her music, Keeley said. Instead Allison Keeley ‘20 sings an original song and plays guitar at Monster Bash (Janik/LION). ful Boy” struck Keeley with new emotions that of telling people what her songs are about, carried over into her songwriting, she said. Keeley lets people listen for themselves to try “Similar to how an actor or an actress plays a character, I feel like you can do the same and find their own meaning in her music. thing with songwriting,” Keeley said. “You make every song you listen to your own,” Keeley said. “It fits into your life the Her songwriting process starts with voice memos and lyrics in the Notes app on her way it needs to.” phone, Keeley said. From there, she adds in other instruments and records her music on See @allisonkeeley on Soundcloud to listen to some of her tracks.

Allison’s Top Songs on Soundcloud

1. Trust Fund Baby 7,109 plays

2. Somewhere in LA 2,350 plays

compiled by Olivia Janik and Tessa Voytovich

3. Love Me Anyways (one take) 1,419 plays

4. One with You 1,223 plays

5. Rock Garden 1,184 plays

Six seniors produce college football podcast AP preseason college football rankings, on July 20. Football commentary produced at LT “I was all in when Olin White texted me this past airs weekly on Spotify, summer about making a college football podcast,” Busker If you saySoundcloud Jesus backwards it sounds like sausage

said. “Anytime you have the guys we have in a room together, it’s a good time and I feel we definitely have been able to both enjoy ourselves and make a high quality podEvery Wednesday evening, six LT seniors meet at cast.” WLTL’s Production Room C, a brightly lit studio clustered Busker is the WLTL sports director and is in charge of with wires, microphones, and file cabinets. There, in the editing the podcast. Once he finishes, he sends the recordbasement of NC, they indulge in White Castle or Wing ing to Ganzel who is able to publish it on their Spotify Stop and spend approximately the next two hours discussaccount, “Senior SZN Podcast.” ing the previous week’s college football results for their Because the podcast is not directly affiliated with podcast, “Senior Szn Podcast.” WLTL, they receive no “on-air” time “This show is really special and rely solely on their own platforms, because everyone is just super dedlnstagram and Spotify, to connect with Everyone is just super icated and loves college football,” listeners, Busker said. dedicated and loves founding member Liam McAuliffe Since beginning in late July, the Ins‘20 said. “Everyone has their team tagram account has grown to 128 followcollege football. and enjoys being there. Even a couple ers and they have aired seven episodes days after we record, someone will -Liam McAuliffe ‘20 on Spotify. text in the group chat and ask if we “It can be challenging to get a bigger are good for next week.” audience than just our friends, but The idea spurred last summer when McAuliffe and I think we are doing a really good job of expanding the Olin White ‘20 expressed how excited they were for the brand,” McAuliffe said. “Even though we don’t have a ton upcoming college football season, McAuliffe said. White of followers, all the people who do follow are really interthen took it a step further and asked four more members, ested.” Jimmy DiLoreto ‘20, Sam Heyer ‘20, Sam Ganzel ‘20, With an increase in podcast popularity, WLTL is more and Johnny Busker ‘20, to join. than happy to grant students the opportunity to record, Quickly, the six planned out dates to record and were 15-year director Christopher Thomas said. WLTL is able to upload their first podcast, a 58-minute recap of the one of only 180 high school radio stations in the country.

by Robert Sullivan @robertsullivan24


WLTL is unlike the vast majority of stations who depend on student-run. “Podcasting is an opportunity for us to get more students involved in creating media and audio productions,” Thomas said. “We only have so much time in a day to air live shows, so to be able to just podcast here and publish on your own platform is something we are happy to support students with.” The seniors will air their next show Friday, Oct. 25.

Five members of the podcast team discuss topics for the upcoming episode that will air on Spotify (Sullivan/LION).

Thursday, October 24, 2019

opiniOns PageSevenPhotoGrid

Page 7


The Grands

Welcome to the Page Seven Grid, which you might know as the funniest page in the paper. Your classmates are asked questions, and respond with their funniest answers. Each issue we feature one member from each grade and a member of the LTHS faculty. compiled by Isabella Sorice and John Hepp What is your favorite smell?

Calvin Keska ‘20

What would make today the best day ever?

“Having a school day with “I love the smell of grass after no homework, then going to it’s been cut because it reminds an all you can eat buffet of me of summer work and mom- anything my heart desires, ma always said ‘get yo’ funny then finishing off the day in up not yo’ money up.’” a food coma, having the best sleep ever.”

What kind of ghost haunts LT?

Name a two person Halloween costume and who you’d want to do it with

“The Flying Dutchman [from Spongebob] lurks in the basement of LT.”

“I’d have to pick the G.O.A.T. Mr. Lowen and my favorite show Rick and Morty. He’d be Rick, teaching clueless Morty his knowledge.”


“If it were a late start Wednesday.”

“A very old one.”

“Dwight Schrute and Jim with Mr. White.”

“Hairspray and Anthropology.”

“Getting at least one good grade in AP Euro.”

“The soul of the fire alarm puller at hoco last year because y’all know he got roasted to death.”

“Travis and Kylie with Madame Fellmann.”

“Getting an unlimited Hot “The ghost of Pennywise, Topic credit card so I can buy he haunts here for children everything in the store.” to eat.”

“The wicked witch of the west and the good witch of the north with Mr. Kuehl. He must be the good witch.”

Evan Markworth ‘21

Charlotte Sands ‘22

“Lavender because it’s soothing.” Jessica Gawron ‘23

“Thanksgiving meals.”

“Time outdoors with my family.” ed. note: pure.

“The ghost of the Chicago “Dr. Evil and Mini Me with Bears after my Raiders beat Coach Diete.” them.”

P.E teacher Kurt Weinberg

Lion’s Mission Statement The LION staff strongly supports the First Amendment rights to Freedom of expression and opposes censorship in any form.

LION is a newsroom for journalism students designed to serve the community of Lyons Township. It is LION’s responsibility to cover the events and issues that may have relevance to the readership in the community. LION will attempt to cover all aspects of the school; however, coverage will greatly depend on the item’s news value. News value is determined by timeliness and how relevant the item is to the majority of the newspaper’s readership. LION editors reserve the right to determine the news value of content. LION will clearly identify sources of news, except in cases when it is clearly necessary to protect the source’s identity. LION will avoid sensationalizing the news. LION does not invade the personal privacy of sources. Each issue of the paper will feature staff editorials. Although they are written by individuals, they reflect the viewpoints of the student staff. LION is written primarily for LT students and faculty. LION makes every possible effort to correctly spell the names of sources. All facts must be checked for accuracy by the writer. Any unverified information will not be printed in LION. Most of what is published is the work of individuals. The writer’s name will be printed by every story, except for the editorials. The entire staff is responsible for all content that is published. Administrators have a non-review role and do not control the content prior to publication. LION strives for the highest standards of accuracy in its presentation of material that time allows. The staff accepts responsibility for the accuracy of these facts. Rumor, gossip and innuendo are not included in a story appearing in LION. Sources interviewed for a story will be given the opportunity to look through their interview notes and verify their quotes prior to the printer’s deadlines. Every reporter and other member of the staff will face the ramifications for any inaccuracies presented in his or her story.

Write us a Letter!

Have an opinion about a LION article or something happening at LT? Bring a letter to NC Room 220, Jason Scales’s mailbox or email it to Olivia Janik at Make sure the content of the letter is appropriate, sign your full name and include your email! LION reserves the right to edit all letters. Not all letters will be published.

Random Chatter

Did you hear that? Here, the Random Chatter Box, LION compiles some of the funniest, weirdest, and most random comments we hear in the halls of LT. “Dogs go ham over nothing.” -Ben Smiley ‘20

“This is pure poetry (in response to “Truth Hurts” by Lizzo).” - English teacher Aaron Tiemen

“If sloths could talk that would be sick.” -Jake Taylor ‘21

“My brother had an albino hedgehog that shook all the time, so he named it Beyonce.” -History teacher Ben Lafontaine

Follow LION!

Twitter: @ltlionnewspaper Instagram: @ltlionnewspaper Snapchat: lionnewspaper To follow individual staff members on Instagram, look at their byline to find their user-name.

On the morning of Sept. 7, I woke up at 5:30 to get ready Diane Makovic for the LT Invite. It was the first meet of the cross country season, and I was feeling really nervous for the race. Once I got to LT, my teammates and I sat in the team area listening to hype-up music to get ready. After a little while, I went through the warmup and jogged to the line with my teammates. The gun went off and the race started. About halfway through the race, Maddie Ohm ‘21 and I turned into the baseball fields for the second time. This is about the time where the race starts to get really hard, but it’s also the time where we have to start moving up and pushing harder. It’s a mental challenge as much as a physical one. Right when I really wanted to slow down, all of a sudden, I saw Kate Ferrell ‘21 running across the baseball fields screaming “THE GRANDS DO IT FOR THE GRANDS.”  That phrase, while it might not make a ton of sense to most people, is what helped get me through that race. By “the grands,” Kate means the Pillsbury cinnamon rolls. She had been talking about them all week long and was using them as motivation to get through the race.  Sometimes going into stressful situations (races or in school), it can be easy to get wrapped up in the anxiety and forget why you are doing it. Having funny sayings or moments with teammates enables you to relax more and alleviates some of the stress from the situation, allowing you to concentrate and perform your best. Running can seem like a very individual sport at times, but you and your teammates are all working together to beat other teams. Inside jokes and team bonding experiences have really helped make the girls in my training group close.  My group in cross country goes to the health room once a week to set goals for our upcoming races and discuss tips to improve the mental aspect of running. One thing we talk about is on-task thinking, or staying in the moment. This can be a very difficult thing to do during a stressful situation because your brain wanders a lot when you’re anxious. One of the tactics we use to stay “on-task” and bring our minds back to the present is focusing on a mantra. These short sayings are very individual to everyone, but using inside jokes or funny moments from practice has been a good tool for me. Hearing cheers like “THE GRANDS” from a teammate helps me to focus and remember why I am racing. Humor brings people together which is important when creating a close team environment.  Motivation doesn’t have to come from a long speech or celebrity. You can find motivation in small, seemingly unimportant moments and phrases. Screaming “grands” across a field doesn’t mean anything to any other team or most people out there, but its underlying meaning was very motivating for me during that race.

Write in and make your voice heard.  100 S. Brainard Ave., La Grange, Ill. 60525  LION reserves the right to edit all letters.


Page 8

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Does Hollywood still have it?

LION surveyed 333 students about their opinions on the originality and creativity of Hollywood in 2019.


n To Sweater Weather— nothing is more satisfying than sweater paws. n To Candy Corn—hands down the best Halloween themed candy. n To all the days off school in October—I finally got nine hours of sleep! n To teachers that give extensions on homework—the unsung heroes of the school year. n To dog Halloween costumes—is it extra to dress my dog up as a frappachino? Yes, but is it worth it? Absolutely. n To parent-teacher conferences—I may be getting grounded for life, but that Friday off is worth it. n To watching movies in English class—seeing the evolution of Leonardo DiCaprio from freshman to junior year is the highlight of high school English. n To people who still dress up for Halloween— we admire your spirit. n To the new bathrooms at NC—they don’t smell like JUUL yet. n To the person reading this—you made it to page 8 of the paper, congrats! n To the Halloween themed Pilsbury sugar cookies—the unofficial official cookie of VSCO.


n To cuffing season—I can do cute fall activities all by myself, thank you very much. n To Early Decision for colleges—I’m too indecisive for this. n To PDA—yes, we did this last issue, but somehow it’s gotten worse. n To pumpkin spice—you were fine when you were just a latte, but pumpkin spice spam is not okay. n To people who listen to Christmas music Nov. 1— Thanksgiving deserves more respect and you know it. n To the 2 billion photos from Bengston’s pumpkin patch on my Instagram feed—ever heard of an apple orchard? n To the colder weather—why can't humans just be like bears and hibernate all winter? n To people who say that high school students are too old to trick-or-treat— nobody is too old for spooky season. n To Finstas—nobody needs to those 400 word paragraphs about your boyfriend. n To people who write “if you know, you know” on their Snapchats—I don’t know!


of students surveyed said that original movies were better than remakes.


of respondents said they enjoyed movie sequels and franchises.


of students surveyed said that movie plots produced by Hollywood were moderately original in 2019.

As original as ever It’s true: Hollywood has a bad case of sequel-itis. The “Fast and Furious” franchise currently has nine films, with a 10th on the way. The Marvel Cinematic Universe has bloated to 23 total movies, along with several spin-off TV John Hepp shows. Even Disney, the mastermind that came up with classics such as The “Lion King” and “Aladdin” is releasing hollow live-action remakes of these films in an obvious attempt to cash in on nostalgia and score big numbers at the box office. These days, it feels like Hollywood is made up of big studios pumping out the same old methodical remakes and sequels in an effort to line their pockets. In reality, however, there are original movies constantly released in Hollywood that are being overshadowed by the likes of Universal and Disney, who market their movies substantially more than some of these smaller studios. This creates the perception that all that’s out there is big budget franchises, when in reality, that’s not true. They simply have the backing of a larger studio and therefore are made more known to the public than smaller movies. It’s a vicious cycle: these blockbusters make hundreds of millions because audiences flock to them, so these studios have the money to shove the advertisement for the sequel down your throat. For every “Nightmare on Elm Street” remake, there are several original, creative movies that people just don’t hear about because they don’t have the studio backing of the larger movies.   Moreover, even though many of these rehashed movies may seem formulaic on the surface, there is actually quite a bit of creativity underneath in some instances  Take the third Thor movie “Thor: Ragnarok,” for example. The first two had gotten a mediocre reception, so in the third installment, Marvel strayed from the comics, infusing it with an ‘80s-inspired color palette and a more lighthearted tone.  The movie received rave reviews and

is praised as one of the best Marvel movies, exemplifying the originality that exists even within these big movie franchises. There is a false perception that movies aren’t unique anymore, and this problem lies not within Hollywood, but the viewers themselves. There’s a reason that these sequels make so much money: we go to see them, constantly. We, as viewers, are drawn back to spend hundreds of dollars every summer to see what our favorite characters are up to. Many of these unique movies don’t have mass appeal—and that’s what makes them what they are. The art of filmmaking is amazing because if you don’t want to watch the comedic satire of the Nazi party in “Jojo Rabbit”, then you can watch “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”’s sprawling depiction of 1960s Hollywood, or “Midsommar”’s terrifying depiction of cults and pagan rituals. These movies are just a fraction of what has released only this year. There is so much out there to explore in cinema, but the majority of audiences simply don’t care. They would rather watch another bland remake, which lends to these truly extraordinary movies going under the radar. Yes, many of these blockbusters are easy to watch. They’re formulaic action movies, or comedies. The good guys beat the bad guys and everyone goes home happy in the end. But, they don’t challenge the viewer. They don’t make the viewer think. They aren’t ambiguous or open to interpretation. There are very few blockbuster movies where the audience comes out of the movie thinking, analyzing what they just watched. The average movie-goer doesn’t necessarily want to be challenged to think analytically about a movie and its themes; they just want a feel-good popcorn movie, which ultimately leads to many of these innovative, thought-provoking movies feeling unfavorable to many movie-goers. Incredible original movies are out there; they’re not hiding. Audiences just need to ditch the franchises, go out, and challenge themselves with amazing original movies.

Copy and paste Hollywood is starting to lack content that is truly, or mostly, original. As production companies create movies solely in the capitalistic pursuit of money, the content that makes it to the Nina Shearrill big screen with multi-million dollar budgets becomes increasingly narrow. The success of movies like “Avengers: Endgame”, “The Lion King”, and “Toy Story 4” lie in a combination of large production budgets and audience familiarity. Movies like “Endgame”, with over $300 million as its production budget, have no choice but to be successful with the amount that has been spent on them. That multimillion dollar investment goes into countless advertising campaigns to garner millions in income, a privilege most movies will never get. Imagine if all producers had access to that much money, the variety of most popular movies would change drastically allowing more variety in Hollywood. But that is not the case. The top seven grossing movies in 2019 (“Endgame,” “The Lion King,” “Toy Story 4,” “Captain Marvel,” “Spiderman: Far From Home,” “Aladdin,” and “It: Chapter Two”) all fit into one of three categories: sequel, based off a comic, or a remake. This continuation of these old story lines makes Hollywood seem like it is losing its originality, and it is. Hollywood is losing its originality, but not due to a lack of writers. It is losing its originality because major production companies are investing their money into franchise markets they have already found fruitful, the safe bets. An example of this is the investment of the world into the Avengers franchise. With the popularity of the Marvel franchise, investing $357,115,007 into the production budget was no big deal. “The Lion King” (1994) had a special place in the hearts of children and young adults alike, making it a sure bet for gaining a huge audi-

ence; the same is true for “Toy Story”. Critics complain about this lack of originality, with the fault going to producers, but Hollywood is not solely responsible for this repetition --it’s us, the viewers. Hollywood is a profit-based entity, therefore, as long as we retweet, rave about, and support solely the same kinds of movies, companies will continue to milk their cash cows thus drawing out washed up storylines way beyond where they should have been stopped, like the “Fast and Furious” movies. Now, there is some originality happening. The eighth top grossing film “Us” was an original piece by Jordan Peele. A horror film that, as confusing as it was, had a plot of its own that hoped to not only scare you, but to make you think about its meaning on top of all the allegories he wrote into the script. Whether it was good or not, it was the first movie on the list this year to not be a sequel or remake. It also scored the highest opening weekend for an original horror film of $70 million. Props to that. Another original, “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” by Quentin Tarantino, broke away from the mold and created a movie about the Manson family cult that took the life of actress Sharon Tate and four others. But instead of them dying, like in real life, they were able to kill the cultists. A happier ending, I suppose. It ranked 15th. If you look at Box Office Mojo which lists the top grossing films and their rankings, you will see that all of the new content has a smaller budget and a small gross. Well if all the money that studios have is going to these big budget films, how can original content and newer writers find their place in the cinematic market? It can’t. Without funding the original content that definitely exists out there, studios will continue to gravitate towards the easier choice of repetition.

The Times They Are A-Changin’

Almost four years ago, I almost pulled my hair out with frustration Olivia Janik as presidential candidate after candidate was asked: “Would you attend a gay wedding?” It angered me that reporters and moderators alike summed up all questions about LGBT+ issues with one question that had nothing to do with actual policy. It was 2016, I could not believe that people still considered gay marriage a controversial issue. However it was. According to CBS, a majority of Republican candidates in the 2016 presidential election either dodged questions about gay marriage or outright opposed it. The 2020 election is a different story. Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Ind., is an openly gay man running for president. Not only is Buttigieg running for president, but he is also one of the top five candidates in a crowded primary race. Buttigieg is tied with Kamala Harris in the polls, both polling at 5% as of early October, according to the New York Times. Mayor Pete has successfully made a name for himself and become a serious contender in the race for the democratic nomination. Ten years ago, it would have been near impossible for an openly gay man to run for president. Ten years ago, an openly gay man could not even serve in the military. The attitudes of Americans are changing when it comes to gay people, and Buttigieg is proof. According to analytics company Gallup, in the past 10 years support for gay marriage in the United States has increased by over 20%. In comparison, from 1999 to 2009 support for gay marriage only increased by 5%. Over the past 10 years, America has become incredibly more supportive of the LGBT+ community, from the legalization of gay marriage in 2015 to the popularity of shows like Netflix’s “Queer Eye”. Four years ago, most presidential candidates refused to give a straight answer over the issue of gay rights. Today, we have a gay man as a first-tier candidate. In his memoir, Buttigieg said that he considered coming out a “career death sentence.” That may have been true 10 years ago, but today Buttigieg’s sexuality has not impacted his campaign. Since he announced his candidacy, Buttigieg has been considered a viable candidate and his sexuality has not been used to discredit him. His campaign is centered around his ideas and hopes for America, not who he loves. America is making real progress. We are opening our minds and our hearts to people who are different than us. Two years ago, I was terrified of coming out as bisexual to others. I braced myself for the name calling and bigotry I was sure I would face. It never came. Instead, I was met with love and acceptance from friends and family, no matter their political beliefs or faith. Cynics will say that America is not ready for Buttigieg to be president, that we still have a long way to go before everyone will be accepting of the LGBT+ community, and they are right. But before we get back to work stopping hate crimes and ending employment discrimination, give yourself a pat on the back America: we made progress.


Thursday, October 24, 2019


All classes, all levels

Page 9


LT requires 14 academic classes and half a lesson plan tailored to the ability of the group of these classes are not available at every as a whole, rather than having to address students level (preparatory, accelerated, honors/AP). with a variety of abilities and needs. Students feel At a school the size of LT, it is surprising more comfortable in a group with peers with the that some of LT’s student body is required to ability to learn at about the same speed, accordtake classes that are not offered at the level ing to hundreds of student surveys conducted by that best fits them. sociology researcher Beth Lewis. Each individual student It is unnecessary for an accel Position: LT should is unique and learns at a level Physics or English studifferent pace. Not offeroffer all levels of a dent to be forced to take the AP ing all levels of required version of these classes, when course for required classes does not take this their only other option is feeling classes to give stuinto account. For examdents the best learning unchallenged in a prep class. In ple: in English IV offers AP classes, teachers teach with experience possible. no accel level. For some, the intention of preparing their the AP level might be too students for the AP test. This challenging or be too much format is completely useless for of a time commitment, but the other only accel level students who would benefit from a option is prep, where they might not be slower pace or an additional lesson. challenged. Students are more productive in classrooms It also must be taken into account that that are suited best for them. Students learn each student has different after-school better in an environment with peers at the same activities, work loads and strengths. It is level as them, and work more effectively. unrealistic to assume that every student LT should allow all students to be as successat LT should be placed in the exact same ful as possible by offering all available levels of classes. Homogeneous classrooms—those all required classes in order to help all students thrive in high school. with students of similar abilities—can have

Illustration by Kaitlyn Joyner and Brianna Fonseca

Staff Vote: 20-8

Computers in athletic Athletic study hall is an invaluable of desktop computers available for student use resource for busy student athletes. It allows at any time. On the other hand, the athletic them a free period to complete work for study hall in room 236 maintains a single laptop, other classes, in hopes that they can make hidden in the corner of the room. This laptop is up time lost at practices, games and meets. often occupied, sometimes for the whole period, It also provides for a break in athletes’ elonleaving other students needing to type, print or gated school day for them to converse with submit an assignment high and dry. While stufriends or simply rest their dents are welcome to try reserving Position: Athletic brains before going on with a spot in the library or Discovery their days. But as classes Center, spaces are limited and study hall should become more centered some students are still stuck hoping have a computer around technology, more that they’ll have better luck in cart so students and more assignments are their lunch study hall or that their can complete their teacher will allow them to print required to be completed online homework. online. before or during class. While these programs One of the many privileges stuenhance the classroom experience and teach dents at LT enjoy are the portable computer carts students important skills, making progthat allow students to work on online assignress on these assignments can be difficult ments in the convenience of their classrooms. without access to a computer. Therefore, Permanently adding one of these carts to the athstudents in athletic study hall need access to letic study hall should be a new priority for the computers. All study halls should have equal school’s administration and staff. Having this will opportunities. Students in athletic study hall allow students greater access to their resources, have the same needs as students in normal give them a better chance of using their time study halls and shouldn’t be slighted just productively. By limiting students’ access to the because the class was not on their schedule resources they need to complete their work, to start the semester. Unfortunately, this directly or indirectly, athletic study hall is not is not the case. Room 251, the main room completely serving that purpose. That is why it’s for scheduled study halls, has a number time to make a new addition to room 236.

Illustration by Tommy Layden

Lion The Voice of Lyons Township Students Since 1910

Staff Vote: 26-2

LT promotes voting LT held a voter registration with the (CIRCLE). The number of youth outnumbers the League of Women’s Voters at NC on Sept. number of seniors eliminating the claim that the 24. All students had to do to register was young can not change anything. complete an easy to use form and provide a The youth make up 21% of the voting eligible valid ID or social security number, and they population, according to CIRCLE. Yet, in the were rewarded with a handful of candy and 2016 election, 18-29 year olds had the lowest a sticker. The process took most students less percentage of voter turnout for all age groups, as than five minutes to complete. Once students reported in the U.S. Census. were registered, they received handouts with However, young people have a drive to important information about change the world. Activist groups voting. In total they regissuch as the Climate Strike and Position: Voter reg- March for Our Lives are led by pritered 646 students. istration drives are Voting is an essential marily teenagers, and are sparking part of democracy and encouraging teens to change in the political climate and American society as a lobbying for legislature. The youth vote. whole. It allows people to are inspired and passionate but they have a voice and contribute just need the tools to let them use to the government. However, many young their voice. people feel discouraged by the voting process The week of Sept. 23 was the first ever High and are unable to vote due to long waits or School Voter Registration week. The push to help being out of state for college because they the youth participate in elections led the League are not registered. New measures have been of Women Voters and students to come together enacted to encourage the youth to vote such to make sure everyone who is eligible is regisas registrations in schools, and to encourage tered to vote. youth to break the old status quo. When young people are registered, they are There are 46 million young people more likely to vote. That is why it is essential to between the ages of 18 and 29 eligible to offer voter registration at schools. LT is part of vote, and only 39 million seniors, accordthe movement to encourage youth participation ing to the The Center for Information & in the government, and new student voters have Research on Civic Learning and Engagement a chance to use their voice in our democracy.

Open Forum The opinion section of Lion is a public forum. Opinions expressed in columns and letters to the editor are the opinions of individuals. Letters to the editor must be signed and represent only the views of the signed writer. Editorials Editorials represent the collective opinion of the entire Lion staff. The idea for the staff editorial will come from the Opinions Editor or suggestions of the other editors and staff members. One writer will compose each editorial. Advertising Display advertising rates begin at $30 with optional discounts available. Call (708) 5796403 between 2:10 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. for further information. Subscriptions Yearly subscriptions can be purchased for $10. Lion 2019-20 Staff Diane Makovic, Olivia Janik, Co-Editors-in-Chief Liz Gremer, Grace Kulat, Art Directors/Design Chiefs Nicole Klein, Managing Editor of Online Content Anna McCormick, Tessa Voytovich, News Editors Maggie Kahn, Tommy Layden, Sports Editors Dani Almase, Mia Bonfiglio, Pulse Editors Nina Shearrill, Multimedia Content Editor Page Darling, Assistant Multimedia Content Editor Isabella Sorice, Editor of Photography and Social Media Claire Williams, Copy Editor Quinn Riordan, Kaitlyn Joyner, Photographers/Reporters Max Dike, Alfonso Fernandez, Kate Ferrell, Brianna Fonseca, Lillie George, John Hepp, Charlotte McLaughlin, Lizzie Patel, Sophia Schultz, Adriana Serano-Matsumoto, Robert Sullivan Reporters Jason Scales, Advisor Ryan Darrah, Assistant Advisor

Staff Vote: 26-2 Contact via:708-579-6403

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Thursday, October 24, 2019

Girls XC preps for postseason meets Runners reflect on regular season, begin to train for upcoming for state meets by Max Dike @mxdk430

With the girl’s state cross country meet only weeks away, LT cross country coach Alex Lyons is helping his athletes make their final preparations for the postseason races. However, the most important steps have already been taken, he said. “If you’re doing a lot of prep before meets, you’ve missed a lot,” Lyons said. “The more you’re doing now, the more you forgot to do earlier.” “Earlier” was a good time to get things done. The team has been working to reestablish the team identity after the yearly departure of the previous team’s seniors, Lyons said. So far, they’ve done a good job, he said.  “Our upperclassmen group has constructed a really healthy team environment,” Lyons said. “I think that’s the most important thing.”  The runners themselves have noticed this team environment as well. Kate Dickman ‘21 is very happy with the smooth transition, she said.  By practicing in an inclusive environment, the relationships created through the team have become more meaningful.  “There is no doubt in my mind that our top priority is to run for each other…and run because we love it,” she said. While the athletes have been working to improve all season, there are still different ways to prepare for individual meets, Maggie Abbs ‘20 said. Breathing exercises and visualization are two big things they use to get into a good mental state. “Not only do we physically train hard, but we make sure

Maggie Abbs ‘20 passes competitor during race (courtesy of Don Abbs). that our mental component is there,” she said. “[Mental preparation] helps us to better....look at all the possible outcomes.” Not all of the team’s top runners will be running in all the postseason meets, however. Mariah Bonfiglio ‘21 is one of several athletes staying with the team through mid-November to participate in practices and support her teammates.  “It helps us continue to be a part of the team and cheer on our teammates and further our training for another month,” Bonfiglio said, “which will better us for [the Midwest Regional meet].”  Despite not racing the sectional or state meets, Bonfiglio

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will attend and participate in the regional meet with her teammates on the practice group and the team’s top seven runners, in Terre Haute, Indiana on Nov. 16. She plans on using this valuable time to build a solid foundation for further improvement for next season, she said. This sense of self-awareness and motivation is something that Lyons makes a serious effort to nurture. Emotional expression and discussion is very important and Lyons said the athletes excel at detecting and working through whatever they’re feeling. “Racing is hard,” Lyons said. “You’re going to run into stumbling blocks. I think the kids on our team handle those really well because they’re able to notice when they’re running into difficulty and they’re smart enough to name what those things are.” The stumbling blocks come in many forms. The ups and downs of a season can be difficult to accept, Dickman said. “Running is a super mental sport and it takes a lot of practice being....tough and overcome pain,” she said. “Nothing is linear and you have to realize that going into a season.” Similarly, some days are harder than others, Abbs said, but over her four years running cross country, it has been worth it to persevere.  “It’s definitely hard in the moment,” Abbs said, “but it translates to how far you go and you can end up surprising yourself, which is one of the best feelings in the sport.” While competition is challenging, Lyons maintains that progression and development are the things he really wants kids to be excited about, regardless of their ability.  “We want kids to focus on their individual skills,” Lyons said. “[Their] job is to figure out individually what is the next step in [their] development.”                    The Illinois State Final Meet will be held at Detweiller Park in Peoria on Nov 9.

Boys XC has strong conference performance Cross country heads into the post-season following growth by Diane Makovic @dmakovic8

When the cross country season started this year, the boys team had a new assistant coach on the roster, Joe Pontrelli. Pontrelli had previously coached for the girls cross country and track teams but switched to helping the boys team this year. “It has been one big learning experience,” Pontrelli said. “I have had to build relationships with a new set of athletes, and I am figuring out a different training system. I am learning a lot from Coaches [Mike] Danner, [Jake] Discipio, and [Leonel] Reyes. I have been very fortunate to work with both programs.” The team has had to adjust to having another coach, but they think his advice and encouragement help him fit in to the team environment, varsity runner Owen Hayes ‘21 said. “I personally love having Pontrelli as an assistant coach,” varsity runner Jack Ehlert ‘20 said. “He is extremely knowledgeable on

running form and mechanics, racing mentality, and communicating with his runners. Also, he is a funny and nice coach who brings a lot of life to our practices. He definitely was a great addition.” So far throughout the season, the runners have put together some impressive races but think the best races are ahead, Pontrelli said. Now, the group is working to get the entire team in a good position for the rest of the season, Hayes said. “So far, I think the season has gone well,” Ehlert said. “We’ve lacked a bit of consistency in some races, but a lot of kids are starting to step up which makes me optimistic for when we begin to put all the pieces together and compete at full capability.” Heading into the state series races, the team is focusing on its goals of winning conference, regionals, and hopefully being a team that can compete for a trophy at state, Ehlert said. “We are expecting to be a very competitive team for the rest of our season,” Pontrelli said. “We continue to have great workouts and have worked very hard to improve our mental approach to racing. These are both key indicators that our team is primed for

LT team surpasses opponents as the St. Charles North Invite race progresses (Williams/LION). the rest of our season.” The upperclassmen have taken their upperclassmen I do like having fun with all role to lead the underclassmen, especially my teammates and having a good time.” The conference meet was held at Beren’s because the varsity lineup for the boys is Park on Oct. 19. The boys [put results here]. very upperclassmen-dominated this year. “Being an upperclassman, I believe it is a This weekend on Oct. 26, the varsity runvery important responsibility to step up as a ners will race in the Regional meet at SC at leader,” Ehlert said. “This is crucial to being 2 p.m. in order to attempt to qualify for the a good role model for freshman and help- Sectional race on Nov. 2 and the State meet ing keep the team in good form. Also as an on Nov. 9.

Boys varsity soccer advances into postseason

After winning conference title, with a record of 13-3-23, team attempts to make deep playoff run, while improving skills

together because we can win a lot of games.” LT is arguably in the best Super sectional in the State, players say. It’s a group loaded with tough conference opponents, Oak Park River Forest High School, Hinsdale Central High School and the number one ranked team in state, Morton. by Tommy Layden “Everybody goes 100% no matter what, I think that’s [how] we [can] beat more @layden_tommy talented teams, [how far we go depends on] how we play when it matters,” left back In the boys last game of the regular season Tommy Abbs ‘20, said. the team played Argo on Oct. 17. The Lions On Sept. 26, the team beat Hinsdale Central prevailed in a 1-0 victory despite changing in a 1-0 victory. Players said this win caps things up on the field. The team will have off an epic legacy of four dominant years of play Argo again in the second round of the winning the silver brick over the Red Devils playoffs on Friday Oct. 25 at Argo Highboys soccer teams. school. “One thing that Labbato told us the day “[We were] pretty sad being out [there] on before the Brick game [is] the one thing we our last game on west field, but I’m confident have in common with Central is teams hate we have many games left,” goalie Bradley us,” Fraser said. “Because we are typically Deboer ‘21 said. the teams to beat and we’ve always had a Head coach Paul Labbato started an all target on our backs. That’s never bothered senior line-up and gave players the opportuus and it’s always pushed us to be the better nity to play other positions. team.” “[Before the game] as we are going into the The postseason rankings help with making locker room [Labbato] asked us what formaa guess at how a team might do, but it is tion we should play and we decided on a 3-5impossible to know how far a team could 2,” striker Jake Fraser ‘20 said.” go because of all the factors that go into We did it mostly because anything can each game. There is no way to definitively happen in the playoffs [and] a different forprevent injury, bad weather, or just a bad mation will allow us to come out as a surprise bounce here or there. The varsity team ecstatically ran off the field to celebrate with their fans after winning the Silver [when we play them the second time].” “The playoffs is a combination of being Brick against Hinsdale Central on Sept. 26 (courtesy of Anthony Fertitta). Coming into this year the team had big shoes good and lucky,” Labbato said. “When you to fill after last year’s team ended their season are in games that can go either way if you losing in the Super Sectional, two games from the State Championship. They ended the regular remain determined and play your style you can be really successful.” season with a record of 13-3-23 and locked up the two seed going into the Lewis University Super The team played in its first game of the playoffs on Oct. 22 against Proviso West sectional. who advanced because of a forfeit by Currie who is unable to play beacuse of the CPS “We pull from different clubs: Celtics, LTSC, Eclipse, and FC United,” Deboer, who has been on teacher strike. Due to the date this issue was printed the results of that game could not varsity for two years, said. “[There is] a lot of individual talent, the thing for us this year is putting it be added to the article.


Thursday, October 24, 2019

Weirdos promote spirit

and students, Kapp said. “The main challenge we face is the expectations from our school,” Shadle said. “The former Weirdos did a fantastic job. We want to do by Liz Gremer just the same for our year, and surpass the previous Weirdos if we @lizgremer can.” Students have been positively reacting to the new Weirdos The student section was filled to the brim on Sept. 6, the first home football game of the year. While eyes were on the team as group, and supporting the shift, Griffin said. “I feel like the Weirdos are doing a great they played, there was an equal attenjob so far at leading the student section,” Griftion to the Weirdos: LT’s renowned fin said. “To be honest, it’s not easy living up student section group. to last year’s Weirdos and meeting everyone’s During games, an eruption of expectations, but I’m sure they’ll just keep getscreams and chants were echoed ting better and better.” back from students in the stands, as The main priority is to have bigger crowds they followed the group consisting in the stands, as well as increased attendance of Jack Kapp ‘20, Drew Shadle ‘20, at sporting events in general, Catrambone said. Ben Catrambone ‘20, TJ Adams ‘20, “My goal this year is to get the biggest fan Michael Wilson ‘20, Arthur Chatt section we can get for every game,” Catram‘20, Ian Tawse ‘20 and Chris Clarke bone said. ‘20. In between plays, music blared At football games, the Weirdos try to get throughout the field, boasting a scene the crowd excited and engaged. While it can of excitement and engagement be a struggle to keep the student section alive “To be a Weirdo, to me, means to throughout the entire game, Weirdos help represent LT and to have Lion Pride,” engage students by leading cheers, throwing Kapp said. out shirts, and playing music. After the club was revived last “The hardest part about engaging the year, school spirit at sporting events crowd at the games is getting the [upper] half has been more alive than ever, Laila of the stands into the chants,” Kapp said. “To Griffin ‘20 said. Last year, the Weirbe fair, it is the freshman who typically sit up dos earned a finalist spot in the IHSA there, and freshman will be freshman.” Student Section Showdown. Addition- Ben Catrambone ‘20 (LEFT) and Ian Tawse ‘20 Prior to the games, the Weirdos hold meetally, the Weirdos posted hype videos (RIGHT) posed for a photo during a home football ings and make decisions regarding football on Instagram of each team sport. Due game (photo courtesy of Jack Kapp ‘20). game themes and what music will be played, to last year’s success, the group plans to Catrambone said. After the Hinsdale Central game on Oct. 25, the continue to build on last year’s legacy, Kapp said. “We are going to take the same path as the Weirdos last year, and Weirdos will then begin to plan for the boys’ basketball season, including the Blackout game. be as weird as possible,” Shadle said. “Everyone is the fan section is considered a Weirdo,” CatramHowever, due to last year’s success, the group’s biggest challenge is living up to meeting the expectations they face from the school bone said. “Some Weirdos just have more school spirit.”

Student section group attempts to build on last year’s legacy, connect with students

Poms prepares for competitions Team begins practicing more, trains for basketball season by Nicole Klein @nicole.klein24 Towards the end of the bus ride to competitions, varsity poms co-captain Sarah Tobin ‘20 and her teammates turn the lights off, silently listen to the song they dance to and envision themselves doing the dance. “At competitions I get nervous because the judges are watching everything to make sure everyone’s arm is in the exact right place, and it can get really crazy,” Tobin said. “Everyone loves that time [on the bus] because [being that calm] rarely happens.” LT poms has auditions in May and the season goes until February, co-captain Julia Fischer ‘20 said. They practice three days a week to prepare a routine for every home football game. Once football season ends, they perform at home basketball games and start competition season, when they practice five days a week.  “I’m really looking forward to working on our competition choreography and I think we really bond during the competition season since we spend so much time together,” Fischer said. This year they will use a new choreographer, Tobin said.  “We wanted to switch it up and see if our scores would improve with new choreography,” co-captain Maya Cedro ‘20 said. 

Last year they competed with one dance at Illinois Drill Team Association competitions, but this year they are bringing two, coach Brittney Smith said. “This will bring the team to a new level of needing to have two routines competition ready,” Smith said.  The team has 25 people, Tobin said. The alternates are undetermined at this point but during competition the team is looking to floor around 20. The team lost a few seniors and gained a few new underclassmen, Tobin said. Besides that, the team is pretty similar from last year. This enables the team to be very close, but can also cause a distraction. “Since we are so [close] it is really easy to lose focus in practice,” Cedro said. “We’re all friends and want to have fun, but we have to focus in practice and really put the effort in.”  Last year the team won IDTA state and got 16th at IHSA state which is the highest place. LT poms has ever achieved, Smith said. The top 10 teams advance to the second day of IHSA state,  Tobin said. The team has a poster in the dance gym listing the goals that they made on the first day of practice. Their specific goal is to advance to the second day of state, along with staying motivated and positive when the dances feel repetitive. “There is a point in the season where it starts to get repetitive, but I find something new in it every time and find a way to push myself and find something more in the story

Poms perform halftime show at first home football game of season on Sept. 6 on Bennett Field (Kahn/LION).

of the dance,” Fischer said. “I think that is something that made us really successful last year because we really tapped into the emotional side of it.” The team puts on a Peppy Primary each year for kids to learn a dance and perform at halftime of varsity football or basketball games, Smith said. There was one in September and there will be one on Dec. 14 for kids ages 4 to 7. There will also be a junior high clinic on Jan. 31, which is a similar experience for dancers that may be interested in trying out for poms when they get to LT. “I think it really brings the school together,” Fischer said. “We dance but we also bring school spirit and energy to sporting events and assemblies. When we go to competitions people can feel proud that people from their school can achieve these things.”

Tennis aims for late season gains Young varsity gets experience from upperclassmen on team

by Lizzie Patel @lizzie.patel Whether it is winning big matches in weekend invitationals or competing well against a tough schedule, this year’s girls varsity tennis team is working to continue their success through the end of the season, head varsity coach Dave Robare said. Seniors leaders, particularly McKenna Sands ‘20 and Greta Frehner ‘20, have had a major influence on the success and chemistry of the young team that keeps five underclassmen in its conference lineup. “Our team is doing amazing this year, singles and doubles,” Sands said. “I know there’s big things in store for us as LT tennis. We are just trying our best to put LT’s name up on the list of big tennis schools.” This year’s varsity is fluid with Junior Varsity 1 to give as many players as possible a chance at the varsity level, Sands said. There are 18 girls who are rostered on this

year’s varsity team. There are only 11 available varsity spots at each conference game: three singles and four doubles, and these spots change because of the level of competition of the team, Adora Ezike ‘21 said. “There [are] just a lot of good players this year,” Ezike said. “A lot of our teams have beat Hinsdale [Central], which usually never happens. We all can work together to get it done.” At the Naperville North Invitational, held on Oct. 5, the team competed against eight other schools in LT’s conference and sectionals, and every team finished in the top four. Mela Zimkus ‘22 finished first at No.2 singles, and Mary Callaghan ‘21 and Annie Murphy ‘20 finished first at No.3 doubles. “We rely on each other when problems come up, and it has made us so much closer,” Callaghan said. “We get along really well. Even when we have those rough weeks, we are able to come to each other to fix the issues.”

Team meetings led by the players are used for the team to resolve problems on their own, Callaghan said. Being the loudest team with the most spirit was a goal set early into the season, Sands said. “We try to emphasize our participation cheering on our team mates,” Sands said. “It always positively impacts our [results] when we do.” Senior leaders have been able to work with players of all levels, Robare said. The team has worked to create new traditions and activities to increase bonding. Players listen to 6ix9ine’s “FEFE” on the bus to every game, make TikToks together, and take postgame “dub pictures.” “Our coach wants to pump up the intensity and keep us close,” Sands said. “He started getting us smiley face cookies every time one of us pegs a girl with one of our shots during a match. It is so fun and we have had really good results from this.” After sectionals, doubles team Sands and Anastasia Bozovic ‘22 are hopeful for success as they head into state this weekend.

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Full disclosure: this isn’t a column about why fall sports are the worst because they interfere with the rest of the athlete’s year. I believe that by Liz Gremer being involved in any sport, no matter the time of the year, is a great experience to have. Being on a team taught me not only about myself, but how to work with others. But, I do have one major complaint with the fall sports at LT: they dictate your involvement in other activities not only for the rest of the year, but for the rest of high school. My freshman year, I tried out for the volleyball team after playing club for a few years. When I made the team, I was elated to be able to play at the high school level. While I was super excited to be on the team, I discovered at my first practice that I couldn’t be as involved with other clubs as I had wanted. When I went to co-curricular night my freshman year to sign up for different clubs, I realized that I wouldn’t be able to do everything I wanted to do because I had made a restricting commitment to volleyball. However, I didn’t have the time to make any fuss or try to talk to my coaches about getting involved with other activities because of how demanding my fall schedule was. As soon as the bell would ring at 3:05 p.m, I would rush from the fieldhouse to the activity bus to get to practice on time. Once I arrived at North, I changed clothes and practiced with my team until 5:30 p.m. This was almost every day, aside from game days where I would do the same thing except I would end around 7:30-8 p.m. In addition to managing my time with games and practices, I also had to juggle my schoolwork and homework. Like many in-season athletes, by the end of the day, I felt drained and began to feel burned out with volleyball. However, I figured that all my dedication and time would pay off by the time I got to senior year and played on the varsity team. I continued with this busy fall schedule for three years, continually showing up to practices and games with enthusiasm and keeping up my grades in the classroom. When it was finally time for all my hard work to pay off senior year, I went to the tryout and realized that it wasn’t the right choice for me to play another season. So, on my own terms, I stepped away from volleyball and opted out of playing my senior year. While it was a hard decision to make after giving three years to the program, I knew that it was the best choice for me. However, now that I have my first volleyball free fall, I’ve seen how much it limited the activities I got involved with. Playing any sport at LT is a major time commitment, but being involved in a fall sport is unlike a winter or spring sport. When you play a fall sport, your season begins weeks before school starts and your final weeks of summer are scheduled around practices and meetings. By the time most seasons end, between October and November, it feels virtually impossible to join a club or activity since you’re showing up for the first time two months after the first meeting. I understand why coaches don’t want their players missing practice. When you commit to being on a team, you should be responsible and follow through with those expectations. However, I think that there needs to be some type of policy or even an understanding between coaches and athletes, especially freshman year. At LT, students are encouraged to try new clubs and find out where they belong. But how can freshmen that play fall sports do this? Coaches should be flexible with athletes allow them the chance to try something besides their sport. Especially at a school as big and diverse as LT, fall sport athletes shouldn’t be confined to their sport that they only have for three months, if not less, of the entire year. One might say: “Why don’t you just join something this year since you’re not playing a fall sport?” In simple terms, I believe that it is too late to get involved. As a senior in high school, I just don’t think it’s worth my time or energy. Maybe that’s a pessimistic way to look at things, but I just feel like if I joined a group as a senior I’d feel out of place and not be taken seriously. At this point, I’m over the “I didn’t get to do everything I wanted to do in high school”. I can’t redo my experience; I’m simply writing this article to bring some awareness or possibly create some conversation between fall athletes and their coaches about being able to get involved with other activities during season.

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Thursday, October 24, 2019

Head varsity coach Dan Hartman transitions from HC to LT football programs, longtime rivals prepare to faceoff in enemy territory

by Maggie Kahn @maggie.kahn After a season full of ups and downs, the varsity football team looks to end the season on a high note, as they approach the Hinsdale Central away game on Oct. 25 at 7 p.m.  “I think that [varsity Coach Dan] Hartman’s experience with [Hinsdale Central] could give us an advantage, but it will really come down to which team plays the best four quarters and which team can execute,” wide receiver Chris Clarke ‘20 said.  As the game approaches, the team has been trying to eliminate common mistakes and take the game play by play, varsity assistant coach Mark Kropke said.  “In order to win big games we need to execute on offense and defense in critical situations,” Hartman said. “So far this year we have not been consistently executing on the [three to five] biggest plays of the game.” With Hartman’s prior experience of coaching at Hinsdale Central, the game will feel different, he said.  “It will definitely be different coaching on the visitors’ side,” Hartman said. “I am excited to compete against the players and coaches I worked with for the last  four years.”  Although the rivalry aspect of the game introduces some new challenges for the team, the team plans on practicing the same way it would for any game, Clarke and left tackle Aidan Kelly ‘20 said.  “I won’t change anything before this game,” Kelly said. “I’ll study film, work out and practice all the same. As a team, we will treat [Hinsdale Central] the same as our other eight opponents throughout the season.”  The players are excited to face the Red Devils after the addition of a new coach and training together as a team since April, Clarke and Hartman said. The team has completed early morning workouts [and summer camp]. All of these things have helped the boys come together as a team. “We needed to bounce back from a bad season last year and [Hartman] got us to work hard all spring, summer and fall,” Clarke said. “Everyone focuses on their specific position and gets better at it everyday. We do a lot of mental reps as well to make sure we can get everything down perfect.” Linebacker coach Patrick O’Neil anticipates a game full of exciting plays between two impressive teams, he said.  “[In order to win, the team needs to] play disciplined football and focus on the next play,” O’Neil said. “If [the guys] focus on beating the guy in front of them each play, the score takes care of itself.” The team’s current record is 4-4 going into the Hinsdale Cental game.

Offensive line watches coaches for play rundown during Glenbard West game on Bennett Field on Oct. 4 (LEFT). LT player gets first down against Proviso East on Sept. 6 (UPPER RIGHT). Player stand for National Anthem during game against Glenbard West (LOWER RIGHT). (Sorice/LION).


SEASON VICTORIES Proviso East Proviso West


Downers Grove N.

New Trier (Aug. 30): 20-10 Oak Park River Forest (Sept. 13): 23-13 York (Sept. 20): 17-3

31-20 Sept. 6

48-0 Sept. 28

Compiled by Maggie Kahn

by Kate Ferrell @mk_ferrell On the North Field of New Trier on Aug. 30 the varsity football team had its first game of the season. Wide receiver Trell Harris ’22 opened the season with the first touchdown of the year. “I’ve been dreaming about this ever since I started playing football,” Harris said. Harris started in third grade for Western Springs, then went on to play for Lyons Football Club, the junior league for LT football, he said. Last year Harris played on LT’s freshman A team where he was familiar with the team environment and the players. But, this year he has had to adjust to the new team, and new plays, Harris said. “Trell is the type of player that you would see making a game winning catch,” quarterback Joey Antonietti ’22 said. “He is quick, has great hands and is a great teammate.” As Harris is learning what it means to be a varsity football player, he has been putting in extra work before and after practice, varsity head coach Dan Hartman said. “He gives us a spark on offensive,” Hartman said. “Anytime he has the ball in his hands, he is able to make a big play.” Although he is one of the youngest on the team, he leads by example, Hartman said. “As a player, Harris is always someone I can ask to go throw balls with because I know he is willing to get better,” quarterback Blaise Reichert ’20 said. Reichert has known Harris since eighth grade, but has never played with him until this year. Despite switching between quarterbacks this season, it has not affected Harris on the field, Hartman said. The team understands that no matter who the quarterback is, we need to win, Antonietti said. “The team trusts that whoever is in the game will give 100%.”

34-7 Oct. 4

19-14 Oct. 18

Glenbard West (Oct. 11): 42-0

Source: Maxpreps

As a sophomore Harris has the potential to be one of the best players in the conference, Hartman said. He had six touchdowns, as of Oct. 21. One of the biggest challenges for the team this season has been staying locked in and executing small details, Reichert said. As the season is coming along, not only is the team improving but Harris has excelled at running routes, Hartman said. “I can be confident in that [Harris] will be able to find a way to get open,” Reichert said. “Trell has gotten a lot better at being able to break tackles and get yards after he catches the ball.” Harris also plays for the MidWest Boom club team. There he is able to play against teams from Florida, Texas, Georgia and Ohio, along with their top players from that state. “[MidWest Boom has] helped me be more competitive overall,” Harris said. With the goal of helping LT win a state championship, Harris hopes to continue his football career at a Big Ten college, He said. He has looked up to his uncle and former LT alumni and Northwestern football player, Matthew Harris ’13. “[He’s] the one who made me want to play football,” Trell said. Matthew played on LT varsity football starting sophomore year, and has attended all but one of Trell’s games. “[I] enjoy watching him dominate the field I once played on,” Matthew said. “Staying healthy and the off season will be big for him, but has the ability to play football as far as he wants to take it. [He has] the capabilities to take it to the next level.” Trell Harris ‘22 getting open for a pass during home game against Glenbard West on Oct. 11 (Sorice/LION).

Thursday, October 24, 2019

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Spooky Season

Volume 110, Issue 2

Page 15

With Halloween right around the corner, we decided to discover more about the bone-chilling ghost and killer stories throughout history from Chicago to its suburbs.

This month we feature a few haunted places in the area. Check out for more information.

The city of Chicago has a long history of eerie ghost stories and disturbing crime. Here, pulling from a variety of online sources that defend the authenticity of these stories, we explore some notorious Chicago-area criminals and a variety of ghosts.

by Paige Darling @paige_darling23

The “cult” was created to fight the rise of drug use and violence at the time. Rumors have circulated that people have been trapped in the facility as the gates closed behind them. Cult members have allegedly approached people asking them to join.

In 1976, Flight 191 exploded into flames, killing 271people. People have reported floating orbs, figures lurking, voices screaming and moaning around the crash site ever since.

The story of Rosemary’s Baby is based here. An expecting mother had a picture of the Virgin Mary to bless her pregnancy, but her husband, a devout atheist, tore the painting down saying, “I’d rather have the Devil in the house.” Her child was rumored to be born with scaly skin, hooves and horns as if the husband’s wish came true.

At this Clarendon Hills restaurant, a woman tried to leave her child with the bartender and appeared to commit suicide after leaving. People reported seeing a woman walking around in the upstairs window outside of the restaurant, along with sounds of a crying baby, footsteps and female voices.

Ghosts at Park Jr. High haunt school

Nun allegedly walks halls of school, goes home with students by Isabella Sorice @isabella.sorice

On the night of a recent eighth grade dance, four teachers were walking around Park Jr. High School, looking for students who might have wandered off. Among the group were some of the current staff, principal Philip Abraham, Assistant Principal Joseph Gage and P.E. teacher Steven Metz. As they walked from room to room, the group paused in the band room on the second floor. The talk of a ghost haunting this room seemed fake to Metz, Abraham said. Metz jokingly asked the ghost to turn on the lights. “The light right above Metz flashed on and off, but that wasn’t even the scariest part,” Abraham said. “After the one light, the entire building lost power. We ran out of that room after.” In 1901, the building which is now Park Jr. High, 325 N. Park Rd. was constructed. However, it didn’t become Park right away. It was originally built to become Nazareth Academy, and house a small group of nuns who would teach. The building looked much different than it does now (more construction took place in the late 1960s). The story of what happened is altered depending on who’s telling it, but the main story goes: when the building was Nazareth, a nun died there. She now haunts Park,

by Mia Bonfiglio @miabonfiglio

opening the elevators, flashing lights, and causing cold spots to be felt around the school. “[The nun] shows her presence in many ways,” Gage said. “She welcomes the students to the school.” Everyone at Park feels the existence of the ghost. Some students even claim to take the ghost home with them and then bring it back the next day, Abraham said. “Students will have one strange occurrence at their houses, and then it will never happen again,” Abraham said. “It’s as if she follows them home.” There are many stories that have been collected over the years. One of the first was when Abraham started as assistant principal 16 years ago, he decided to joke around with the current principal. He called her office on the intercom, and used a funny voice to say hello. The principal didn’t answer. Instead a voice he didn’t recognize said “[The principal] isn’t here.” He dropped the phone and ran around the corner to her office, and when he got there, he saw that the door was locked and the lights were off. The principal had gone home earlier in the day. He was thoroughly spooked, and thought the nun’s ghost had to be behind that. The most telltale sign of the nun happened many years ago, when a group of students were roaming the school, Abraham said. They were taking photos of different areas of Park for a project, one photo being of a plaque on the wall. As the students were going through the photos, they noticed a face was being reflected in the plaque. The face didn’t resemble any of the students who took the photo, and when Abraham and Gage tried to recreate a similar photo, they couldn’t. “Something is clearly lurking in the school,” Abraham said.

John Gacy experienced an abusive childhood and struggled with determining his sexuality. Gacy sexually assaulted and took the lives of 33 boys in the Cook County area from 1972 to 1978. He was known for dressing in a clown costume with makeup on. He was later executed in 1994. A movie was created, “To Catch a Killer,” exploring Gacy’s victims and their cases.

Room 441 at the hotel on Michigan Avenue is allegedly haunted, as multiple incidents of a dark figure kicking people awake and making terrifying noises have been reported. There is also a male ghost that roams the halls, who was supposedly thrown from a window of the hotel during World War I. The notorious ghosts of Al Capone and Peg Leg Johnny (a homeless man who was murdered behind the hotel) have been reported as well.

Resurrection Mary is the most notoriously known ghost in the Chicago area. The story dates back to the 1930s when a woman was allegedly hit by a car on Archer Avenue. The victim was never identified, but there have been numerous reportings of drivers encountering a woman in a white dress and shoes. Sightings of her ghost have been reported by multiple men driving alone. It is said that she returns to Resurrection Cemetery every night.

William Heirens murdered three women in 1946 and left a message written on the wall in lipstick stating, “For heavens Sake catch me Before I kill more I cannot control myself.” He left a bloody fingerprint at the crime scene which eventually led to his conviction. At the end of his life, he was the longest held prisoner in Chicago, serving over 65 years.

On Valentine’s Day of 1929, seven members of an Irish bootlegging operation were killed by a rival Italian gang, allegedly known as Al Capone’s gang. The attackers were dressed as police officers and pretended to arrest the other gang members before shooting them. No members were put on trial for this horrific crime.

GET OUT Thrilling new ‘Joker’ movie debuts Page 16

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Joaquin Phoenix embodies perfect DC comic villain in newest movie

seen so many people stay after the movie for the credits in a theater before. Everyone there was asking each other what happened at the end. The plot will leave you asking questions, which can be seen as negative or positive aspect depending on the person. The “Joker” is a rated R film that was released on Oct. 4. The crime thriller is directed by Todd Phillips and runs at a time of two hours and two minutes. Bottom line: the 2019 “Joker” movie will leave you with goosebumps and an uneasy, sickening feeling in your stomach. If you are looking for a Halloween terror this October, I urge the public to witness the petrifying performance of Phoenix.

by Dani Almase @dani _almase From Jack Nicholson in the first theatrical “Batman” in 1989, to the iconic Heath Ledger in the 2008 “Dark Night,” to Jared Leto in the juvenile “Suicide Squad,” the villain Joker has been portrayed by many different actors. However, none of them compare to Joaquin Phoenix’s outstanding performance in the 2019 “Joker” movie. My $16.49 ticket on opening night was worthwhile due to the fact that the movie’s beautifully intriguing plot leaves you with chills as you exit the theater. “Joker” is set in the 1980s and takes place in the DC comic setting of Gotham City. Arthur Fleck (Phoenix) is a failed comedian who works as a clown in the streets. He lives in a small, old apartment where he takes care of his sick mother, Penny Fleck (Frances Conroy). Arthur suffers from mental health issues such as depression and an odd condition where he laughs uncontrollably in inappropriate situations. Also, Arthur’s peculiar and atypical appearance causes him to be constantly ridiculed and humiliated by society and the outside world. The consistent negativity Arthur experiences eventually deteriorates his humanity into becoming the physiological insane villain, Joker. The plot explores the origin story of someone degenerating into evil. Throughout the movie, there are many plot twists and shocks that make viewers second guess everything. References to how Bruce Wayne became the hero Batman, the reason why Joker became who he was at the end and how Gotham city spiraled into devastation will make you sit in suspense because you are not sure what will happen next. The reason why the film was so great was because of Phoe-

Arthur Fleck (Joaquin Phoenix) as Joker (Chicago Tribune photo). nix’s performance. Phoenix personified the sinister villain in the best way possible. From the eerie laugh to small gestures and facial expressions, Phoenix not only portrayed the original character, but he took the character to a whole new dark level. He made it seem that the morality and humanness of Arthur Fleck completely diminish as he becomes the Joker. According to the website, in order to become the Joker, “Phoenix studied a book about the psychology of assassins, and drastically changed his shirt size, losing more than 22kg [48.5 pounds] for the role.” “[Weight loss] has a drastic effect on you not just physically, but emotionally and mentally as well when you enter into that starvation mode,” Phoenix said to the Toronto Sun. Furthermore, the plotline of the film was so vile that at the end of the movie, my psyche was terrified and twisted. The movie itself is not overly violent, bloody or gruesome, but is it so dark that the mind can’t process what happened. I’ve never

The Joker writes phrase “put on a happy face” on the mirror at a key part of the movie’s plot (Chicago Tribune photo).


Blackberry Market opens as new cafe New restaurant in LaGrange features variety of healthy breakfast, lunch options

friend, an avid matcha drinker, said that it was some of the best matcha she had ever had. Soon after we received our drinks, our meals came and looked fabulous. by Grace Kulat The salads were portioned larger than I expected which was a nice @gkul surprise. I started off by trying the caprese panini, which had a perRecently, health conscious food options are becoming more fect amount of savory flavor. The sandwich along with the crunch of important to people. Restaurants are switching over to using better toasted bread was delicious. non-processed ingredients. With the slogan “eat better, feel better,” Next I tried the chicken avocado club which was enjoyable but did Blackberry Market, located on 36 South LaGrange Road, is doing just not exceed my expectations that I had for it. I have high expectations that. for anything with aioli on it and this sandwich did not meet them. When you walk in, you are immeHowever I did love the sourdough diately greeted by the inviting but simbread that went with the sandplistic design. There are many tables to wich. The kale Caesar salad was a choose from both inside and outside, great basic salad. featuring garage doors that open from My favorite item was the the inside allowing air to flow throughBlackberry Market salad, which out the resturant. When I visited the tasted amazing. The marinating LaGrange location on a Monday afterof blackberries, candied pecans noon the restaurant was completely and goat cheese was exceptional. empty, so there was no line to wait in. The flavors all came together as It took me about 10 minutes to decide one. I would highly recommend on what to order because everything this salad to anyone because of the on the menu sounded delicious. I was great taste of the cominbination. in awe of how many allergy friendly Overall my experience at options they had available. Blackberry Market, was enjoyA friend and I decided to order able. I would most definitely half sandwiches with half salads. We return back to try the breakfast Array of salads and sandwiches Blackberry Markey (Kulat/LION). ordered the chicken avocado club with menu which I have heard great the Blackberry Market salad and the caprese panini with kale Caesar things about from peers around the area. The hours at the LaGrange salad, both of the “pick two” items were $9. We also ordered a cold location are 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and 7 a.m. to brew coffee which was $3.75 and a matcha tea with soy milk that cost 5p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. $4. All of the items on the menu were well priced and completely reasonable for any younger kids such as high schoolers. After we ordered we sat down and began doing homework in one of the booths. The seating was spacious enough for us, our books and our backpacks. Our drinks came quickly after we ordered. The coffee was tangy and slightly bitter but the matcha was exceptionally smooth. My


owner’s bed for months Editor’s rating: 11/10 he slithered into our hearts North Campus

100 S. Brainard Ave. LaGrange, Ill. 60525

1. Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew The perfect mix of pumpkin flavor mixed with coffee and cinnamon. 4/5 paws

2. Caramel Apple Spice Latte

Tasted just like an apple pie, the perfect fall drink. 4/5 paws

3. Iced Caramel Cloud Macchiato Flavors good under the cloud topping, too much foam on top. 2.5/5 paws

4. Salted Caramel Mocha Frappucino

First sip was good, then it just went downhill from there, weird aftertaste. 2/5 paws

5. Pumpkin Spice Latte Tasted like warm pumpkin LaCroix, didn’t live up to the hype. 1/5 paws

compiled by Mia Bonfiglio and Dani Almase

Want your pet to be featured in the LION? Send a photo of your pet with a short bio to bon505972@ for a chance to be featured!

Type of Pet: Western Hognose Snake Owner: Salvatore Melilli ‘20 Name: Frank Melilli Age: 1 Hobbies: Eating mice and slithering Fun Fact: Frank was hidden under his

Here we review and rank Starbuck’s fall inspired drinks for the autumn season.

South Campus

compiled by Mia Bonfiglio 4900 Willow Springs Rd. Western Springs, Ill. 60558

Profile for Lion Newspaper

Issue 2 2019  

Issue 2 2019