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Students get silly during Spirit Week



Best places to eat during open lunch



Meet the Queen candidates



Top Five Fashion Trends



The Hornet’s Buzz

Hall of fame inductees honored Andrea Johnson staff writer

This year, Homecoming marked the ninth induction of four prominent Northtown graduates into the North Kansas City High School Hall of Fame. All honorees were inducted at the Homecoming Assembly on Friday, Sept. 16.

Robert “Dick” Scharz, Class of 1938 Scharz, who graduated only 13 years after the school was built, has been an active member of the community since graduating in 1938. Mayor of North Kansas City from 1953-1962, he was also a business owner and has assisted in the building of many local structures. Scharz volunteered on the construction of the Paseo Bridge in 1954 and North Kansas City Hospital in 1958.

Robert Elliot, Class of 1958


Step Right Up Junior Hannah Lewis purchases her Homecoming ticket from Coach Clemens on Thursday, Sept. 15. Students could buy tickets in the field house for $8 for a single or $15 for a couple.

Elliot, an actor, can trace his career to the drama department at North Kansas City High School. After graduating from Northtown, Elliot attended Southwest Missouri State University and has acted in several capacities, including appearances in four major motion pictures.

Students in a crunch with early back-to-school Homecoming calendar Stormy Allen staff writer

Homecoming has put stress on everyone: the students, the football players, not to mention the staff and students that actually had to put it all together. The theme this year was ‘Cirque de Homecoming.’ Sophomore Laurin Mitchell thought it was a cool theme, but sophomore Jordan Knox wasn’t so excited about it. “I don’t think that’s a good Homecoming theme, it’s really weird,” said Knox. Along with the dance, there’s the homecoming football game. The varsity football team was 0-3 coming into Homecoming. Senior linebacker Kevante Jackson gave an insight on the pressure the boys face this year. “Well we really haven’t won anything, so Homecoming

just adds more pressure,” said Jackson. Jackson added he thinks that if they work on making sure everyone does their job on the field, it will make them better as a team. With a large percentage of Northtown students on free and reduced lunch, most of the student body is tight on money. Not everyone can afford all the essentials that are needed for school, let alone dance tickets and attire. “You already have to pay for school supplies and new clothes and now we have to pay for tickets and a dress on such short notice,” Mitchell said. Homecoming only comes once a year, and although it came early, that didn’t stop any of our Hornets from pulling it all together.

John Erickson, Class of 1961 Erickson has devoted much of his life to the service of others. He has volunteered with the Boy Scouts of America for 40 years. His community service has not been limited to that organization, however. Erickson is also active with such organizations as Rotary Club, United Way and the Anti-Drug Task Force.

Bob Boydston, Class of 1965 After graduation from Northtown, Boydston joined the Army and fought in the Vietnam War, receiving the Purple Heart and Bronze Star for his service. After the war, Boydston dedicated his life to law enforcement and is currently Clay County Sheriff, a position he has held for three terms since 1993.



Sept. 21, 2011

Circus comes to town for spirit week Elizabeth Craig design editor

There are many traditions that surround Homecoming at North Kansas City High School. The parade, announcing the Homecoming Queen Candidates at the Fall Sports assembly, and honoring esteemed alumni are all traditional. Then there’s Spirit Week. Spirit Week is the chance for students and staff to show their school spirit through fun themes and wacky costumes. The Spirit Days for this year’s Homecoming were: Fake an Injury Day, Jersey Shore Day, Movie Icon Day, Circus Day, and Purple and Gold Day. On Fake an Injury Day,

students came in battered, bandaged, and bruised. Many kids came in with band aids or fake bruises, but some went the extra mile. “I really liked Fake an Injury Day because it was the most creative day; I really wanted Zombie Apocalypse Day, but that never happened,” junior Michael Ly said. The spray tan was taken out for Jersey Shore day. Snookie bumps and fist pumps abounded. “I liked Jersey Shore Day because I like to watch the show. Snookie is my favorite,” sophomore Brittany Webb said. Silver Screen Stars abounded when Movie Icon Day rolled around. Charlie Chaplin, the

Mean Girls and Anchor Men all showed up. “I decided to come to school as Rocky Balboa because I watched the movie the night before,” said sophomore Kaela Schope. The clowns came out to play for Circus Day on Thursday. However, students who used facepaint were asked to wash the paint off or to go home. “I don’t like clowns; they really freak me out,” said freshman Develle Brown. Then it was time for Hornet pride on Purple and Gold day. “I was excited for Purple and Gold Day because I wanted to show my love for Northtown. I went all out,” senior Daniell Hernandez said.


That’s Gotta Hurt Junior Michael Ly went the extra mile on Fake an Injury Day with his synthetic scratches. Ly used eyelash glue, lipstick, and eyeshadow to create his look.


Cabs are Here! Senior Cameron Madison imitates the guidos from “Jersey Shore” on Jersey Shore Day. “Jersey Shore” is a reality show phenomenon that is in its fourth season on MTV. The current season is being filmed in Italy.


Seniors Seniors, Rah Rah Rah! Seniors carry their class banner during the parade. The senior class was the only class that had a float in the parade, and as they walked, they called on other seniors to join them. Monkeying Around Junior Lacie Kampert shows off her style on Circus Day. A lot of students showed spirit by dressing up for the circus on Thursday, but any students who had facepaint had to either wash it off or go home.



Life is like a box of chocolates History teachers Mr. McCune and Ms. Taylor dressed up as Forrest Gump and Foxy Brown. In Foxy Brown, Foxy goes undercover to get revenge on the mobsters who killed her boyfriend. In Forrest Gump, Forrest recounts the story of his life to strangers on a park bench while holding a box of chocolates.


The Hornet’s Buzz

Marching band prepares for competition Erin Niederberger copy editor

The students in the Hornet Band are no strangers to hard work. This summer, instead of lounging on the couch or visiting the pool, they could be found practicing and sweating out on the football field in triple digit temperatures. Band Camp, which 95 of the current 107 band students attended from July 26 to Aug. 5, consisted of nine days of practicing music and learning to march, both inside and on the field. Freshmen and other new members attended an additional Rookie Camp, and the band’s drumline attended an extra three days. The band’s season began early, making Band Camp even more necessary. The extra two weeks of practice at camp - teaching students marching fundamentals, show music, and the ‘charts’ that outline the shapes the band will make on the field - were vital in order to be prepared for the early football games.

“We’re going 90 miles an hour right from the start,” director Carrie Epperson said. “That’s proving to be difficult, but the students are pushing forward just like I need them to.” For freshman cymbals player Jennifer Elpert, this was her first Northtown band camp experience. “Band camp, although at extremely hot temperatures, was a lot of fun and you met a lot of kids. You learned a lot and it really eases your nerves.” She’d expected it to be much harder, and the other students to be a lot less friendly. “It was very difficult, but they broke it down,” said Elpert. The negatives? Sophomore trumpet player Caleb McQuerry summed it up in two words: “The heat.” Following a successful marching season, the band is determined to do even better this year. Preparation for their show began at band camp and continued during classes and practices before school. The show

consists of music selections from the Broadway musical Wicked, about the untold story of the Wicked Witch of the West. The 2011-12 season holds special meaning for the band and its two directors, Epperson and Assistant Director Ashley Williams. Epperson and Williams have taught band at Northtown for four years, which means this year’s seniors started as their first class of freshman. So far, the band has performed at three football games during halftime. On the band’s progress, junior snare drum player Hunter Smith said, “We had a rough start with people not committing, but it’s like a marathon - all done slowly but worth it in the end.” As for how far is left to go, Smith said, “About twenty four miles.” Will their preparation be enough? On Sept. 24, the band will compete at the Carrollton Band Day. Last year, they earned first place in their division and third place overall.


Wicked! Members of the Hornet Band rehearse their music during Band Camp before school. Students had to learn how to play their instrument and move in complex patterns simultaneously. Although the work was difficult and the temperatures high, members approached their task with good spirits.

This year, senior Drum Major Corrie Gibson hopes the band will do well again. “Our band has always been a performance band - we kick it into high gear [at competition],”

Gibson said. “As long as we stay focused, we’ll take home first place like last year.”

New teen curfew established in Kansas City Jamie Cone staff writer

Three Kansas City teens were shot and injured seemingly at random when an unknown suspect opened fire during a “flash mob” on the Country Club Plaza last August. Although the teens recovered, Kansas City is not taking this lightly. Because of this event, and problems in the past involving flash mobs that turned violent, a new teen curfew has been enforced. On Aug. 17, the Kansas City Council passed the ordinance 130, allowing police to enforce the curfew and give teens a wake-up call. Don’t worry, as the curfew for this summer is almost up. The newly increased curfew is only in effect from Memorial Day to the last Sunday in September. The city-wide curfew is 10 p.m. for minors under the age of 16. If you are 16 or 17, the curfew is extended to 11 p.m.

There is a different curfew regarding the five main entertainment districts in Kansas City: the Country Club Plaza, Downtown Kansas City, the Jazz District located on 18th and Vine, Westport, and Zona Rosa. If you are within one of these districts, the curfew is 9 p.m. for all minors. Mayor Sly James has also promised Kansas City youth that there will be an increased amount of activities guided for teens throughout the city for which the curfew will not apply. The new law includes an exception for those under 18 to attend an event “for which the city has specifically approved the presence of unaccompanied persons under 18 years of age upon city property.” As for the rest of the year, a more relaxed curfew is enforced: 11 p.m. on weekdays for all minors, and midnight for Friday and Saturday nights. The curfew schedule is based off of Philadelphia’s curfew. Although the curfew may not

be popular with who it regards, Kansas City Mayor Sly James stands by the decision for the new curfew law. “I believe we have to do something. My message is very clear. I care about you.. I care enough about you that I want you to be safe,” he said. So what happens if you get caught out past curfew? Violators will be taken to one of two places depending on the severity of their offence: Brush Creek Community Center or Kansas City Police Department’s North Patrol headquarters. A citation may be written to the parents of the offender. A conviction for violating the new ordinance could cost the parents up to $500, as well as court costs. An order for the parents and child to attend counseling sessions may be issued. Also, the parent may be sentenced with probation time. The reason for such harsh consequences is to deter unruly teens from causing trouble.

Although the council voted 13-0 in favor of the curfew, Kansas City teens aren’t thrilled about it. “I don’t really agree with the curfew, but I get why they have it. Some kids cause a lot of trouble, but there are kids who can behave. I don’t think it’s really fair,” freshman Lauren Davis said.

But some think the curfew is necessary and will bring a change to the streets of Kansas City, restoring the safe feelings. “Kids are kids. They should be able to gather with their friends, hang out and play ball over the weekend,” James said. “We just want each and every one of our young people to be safe.”


Movie time Cinemark Palace on the Country Club Plaza is a local hang out spot for Kansas City teens. Since the curfew has been enforced, Kansas City youth has had to find somewhere else to go.


Sept. 21, 2011

Observing tenth anniversary of 9/11 Tierra Samuel staff writer


We Remember Chiefs fans honored those lost on 9/11 during an NFL game between Kansas City and the Buffalo Bills on Sunday, September 11, 2011. Before the game began, first responders held out the American flag in honor and remembrance of those who lost their lives.

On Sept. 11, 2001, thousands of people were killed and many were wounded by the loss of loved ones. After four flights were hijacked by terrorists, two crashed into the twin towers, another crashed into the Pentagon, and the last never made it to its destination. Ten years after this horrific experience, we are still rebuilding our country and making it safer. Many programs and groups of people are recognizing the people and responders in many different ways. The Boy Scouts of America honored the country through focused acts of service as part of Scout Surge 9/11. Through Sept. 10 and 11, the scouts participated in community activities such as American flag retirement ceremonies and projects that recognize and assist local first responders in honoring the memory of the first responders

and others who sacrificed so much on 9/11. Technology is contributing in a lot of new ways to honor the 10th anniversary of 9/11. Facebook has set up a memorial page in honor of 9/11 and its victims. Kennedy Center’s 9/11 Tribute was streamed live on Facebook. There are smart phone and iPhone apps that are being created just so people can feel and understand what really happened on that tragic day. The apps are trying to create a more authentic narrative, so that people can get closer to the event itself. Explore 9/11, an iPhone application that uses a technique called “augmented reality,” lets users aim their phones at Ground Zero and see it as it looked on Sept. 11, 2001. Most of Northtown students were very young when the 9/11 attacks took place, anywhere from 4 to 8 years old. “I was so young, I really

didn’t understand,” junior Neiah Stanley said. But teachers like Ms. Andrea Taylor and Mr. Steve Epley can remember exactly what they were doing. “I was teaching across the street in the Methodist church, which in 2001 was the academy. Someone called me and said you need to turn on the television, and I just watched,” Epley said. He then explained how he was first confused and was soon taken over by sadness. “I was in the field house,” Taylor said, remembering exactly where she was when she found out. When the attacks happened, Taylor said she realized that the United States wasn’t as big and bad as she thought. This shows how far our country has come since 2001. The attacks were tragic but when the terrorists thought they would break America, the country showed its strength and became strong.

Three seniors named National Merit Semifinalists Johnson, Niederberger, Winans will compete for national scholarships available at Finalist level Erin Niederberger

Did you know...?

copy editor

Andrea Johnson, Erin Niederberger, and Collin Winans are the North Kansas City High School students who have qualified as Semifinalists in the National Merit Scholarship Program. The candidates were notified by Mrs. DeVries. Roughly 16,000 students nationwide reached this level in the competition, achieving it by scoring at or above a specific score on the PSAT test they took their junior year of high school. Semifinalists must then complete an application, due in October. Next February, roughly 15,000 students in the nation will advance to Finalist standing. 8,300 Finalists will be awarded with merit scholarship awards.

• The National Merit Scholarship Corporation was established in 1955.

Andrea Johnson

Erin Niederberger

Collin Winans

“It’s exciting and an honor to be name a semi finalist. I can’t wait to see where it leads.”

“I wasn’t thrilled about filling out more applications, but I’m glad I had the honor of being selected.”

“I was excited. It means that I go on and take the SAT and progress toward the National Merit Finalist stage.”

• So far it has recognized 2.9 million students. • It has provided over 360,000 scholarships worth over $1.4 billion.


The Hornet’s Buzz

Summer adventures at Northtown Alex Grant staff writer

Summer is a time when kids catch up on their sleep or go on vacations with their families. Students at Northtown do all of these things and more. Some students participated in sports that held practices over the summer. Other students participated in fine art programs like Harmonaires and Band, which have practices over the summer as well. And some Northtown students got the chance to travel outside the Kansas City area. Senior Shelby Bowman went to Las Vegas for part of her summer. She traveled there with her dad, her step-mom and her older brother, Andy. Once they were in Las Vegas, Bowman and her family walked the Vegas strip and went shopping.

“It was really fun! Everyone was so friendly and drunk,” she said. Another student who traveled over the summer was senior Evan Kinney. Evan traveled to St. Louis, Missouri and Los Angeles, California. In St. Louis, Kinney went to see a Cardinals game and also went to The Arch to watch fireworks. When he went to Los Angeles, Evan visited Disneyland, Venice Beach and Hollywood. Kinney said, “It was really fun, but I missed my best friends the entire time I was gone.” Senior Sydney Cope was very busy over the summer here in Kansas City. For one month of her summer, Cope participated in the Kansas City Cello Society, improving her cello skills. Cope also re-did her entire bedroom and she said it’s “really awesome.” Toward the end of her summer, Cope participated in Band Camp.

Cope said her summer was “really fun and it was pumpkin butter.” Junior Shannan Henderson stayed home for most of her summer. Henderson had Pom practice almost every morning this summer and when she didn’t have Pom, she had Harmonaires camp. Henderson did do a little bit of traveling at the end of her summer when she went to Branson with the Harmonaires. The Harmonaires had three days of their camp in Branson for a change of scenery. “Branson was fun,” she said. All in all, the students at Northtown had eventful summers. Summer is a time for fun and the students at Northtown definitely took advantage of every opportunity to have some fun this summer.


What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas Senior Shelby Bowman and her brother, Andy, met up with Mr. Red m&m while in Las Vegas over the summer.

Transportation options: Many choose buses Ryan Welliver staff writer

Like many high school students, the students of North Kansas City High School are able to drive themselves to school, but the majority of the student body at Northtown qualifies to ride the big yellow school buses. So what is the ratio of students eligible to ride the bus to students who choose to ride. “We have around 1400 kids who are eligible to ride the bus and just under 1500 kids are enrolled,” Assistant Principal Mrs. Regina Ellis said. Not all these students ride the bus every day however. On average, most upperclassmen take their car instead of riding the bus. “I drive my car because I like to sleep in,” sophomore Jaclyn Blankenship said. Other students might say they feel more independent. “When I drive my car I feel like I have more freedom,”said junior Al Canole. By the time many teenagers

reach high school, they tend to want more power and rights. Who could blame them? But sometimes, the choice of transportation is all about logistics. Some students live far away, like junior Max Irby. “I drive to school because I live 20 miles away,” said Irby. Some students that have a car don’t drive everyday. “I sometimes walk to school because it is fast and I get exercise,” junior Patrick Hoard said. IB students who ride the bus get free transportation. “When I don’t take my car, I ride the bus because I get free transportation because of IB,” junior Johnny Becker said. Other drivers get rides from somebody else. “My friends pick me up when I don’t take my grandfather’s car,” senior Blake OReilly said. Regardless of how they get to school, the most important thing is that students come to school to learn.


Three, two, one... blast off! Buses roll away from the school, carrying students back home after a long day. Although many upperclassmen can drive, some prefer to use the bus system, because they don’t have cars or just want to save their gas money.


Sept. 21, 2011

Off-campus lunch: Great places to eat Sing it: Five Dollar Foot-Long Subway is located right next to Lucky Dragon, just a few blocks from school.

Erin Niederberger

Feeling hungry, Northtown? If you’re tired of cafeteria food, the open campus allows you multiple opportunities. Here’s a quick overview of the lunch opportunities within comfortable walking distance. copy editor

In a Nutshell...

The Hot Dog Church (AKA First Christian Church in North Kansas City) Everyone knows about the church that hands out hot dogs, chips, and soda free of charge every Wednesday. If you’re on a budget, this is your chance to get a free lunch every week. If you’re not sure where to go, just follow the crowd. Freshman Kyra Manlove said, “It was pretty cool. The food was really good and the people were nice.” A fun fact - last spring, they served their 200,000th hot dog.

Lucky Dragon

The Lucky Dragon supplies various dishes on a Chinese buffet, including the infamous ‘rat’ on a stick (chicken, for anyone who’s worried). Students can fill a takeout box with as much food as they want for only $5. Try to go when you have an earlier lunch block, though. Senior Amellia Coffey and junior Jazmin McCoy said, “Good food, but they’re always out of food by fourth lunch.”


Dairy Queen

Fancy some fast food or some ice cream studded with candy? Try Dairy Queen, just across the street from Subway and Lucky Dragon. The food is more expensive than other options, but still reasonable. Junior Andrew Bribiesca said, “DQ is so delicious and it’s really cheap. Sophomore Andrew Hiller added, “DQ is yummalicious.”


If you’re looking for a more healthy lunch, Subway might be your destination of choice. Sub sandwiches and salads are available here, including many healthy options. Sophomore Mary Davis said, “It’s deliciously convenient because it’s fast service and excellent healthy food.” However, the wait time may grow longer by fourth lunch, so plan accordingly. Assistant Principal Todd Hinnenkamp considers open lunch to be a good opportunity for students. It allows them to “develop skills in interacting with people from the community, which is something they will do for the rest of their lives,” he said. However, he also wished to remind students that at all times, they “are representatives of North Kansas City High School, therefore we hope that they handle themselves appropriately.” So in conclusion, Northtown, mind your manners, have fun, and bon appétit!

In a rush? Here’s an overview of the restaurants you can visit and the average price a meal will cost. These numbers aren’t guaranteed, especially if you tend to buy a big lunch. Make sure to have a little extra money, just in case the amount below isn’t enough. The Hot Dog Church Average Cost: $0

Lucky Dragon Average Cost: $5

Quik Trip Average Cost: under $5

Le Monde Average Cost: $5

Dairy Queen Average Cost: $6-7


Need food fast? The parked cars show a typical scene at Quik Trip. Kids and adults alike visit Quik Trip to get things fast. Most students visit Quik Trip to grab a quick bite to eat, but people also go to put gas in their car.


Average Cost: $5

Quik Trip

Not sure what you want to eat? Quik Trip has something for everyone - sandwiches, salads, wraps, and more, all fairly cheap. Senior Ekow Quagraine said, “Quik Trip’s pretty awesome, but it got boring after a while.”

Le Monde

This tiny French bakery on Armour is worth seeking out. It offers sandwiches, various soups, and an assortment of delicious pastries. A chocolate croissant may not be proper lunch fare, but you’ll be tempted anyway. The prices are reasonable. Le Monde is a longer walk than most, so keep an eye on your watch.

And the Blizzard of the month is... Umbrellas shade outdoor tables at Dairy Queen. Usually, though, students don’t stick around to eat. Instead, they walk back to school with their fast food and frozen treats. ERIN NIEDERBERGER


The Hornet’s Buzz

Meet Mrs. Dolinger, new NTV teacher Cierra Murphy

Dolinger didn’t really see herself returning to Northtown when she was in high school. Not only is it a new year, but However, “In college all I we have new teachers as well. wanted was to come back and Mrs. Amanda Dolinger is one teach here!” she said. of the many new Mr. Randy staff members; she Jackson, Dolinger’s has taken over NTV former teacher, said and is also one of the he is “excited” to be drama teachers. working alongside She herself even her. went to Northtown, An interesting and is happy to be fact you might back. But she does not have known find it different. about Dolinger: she “I think part of studied in London why it’s so different Mrs. Amanda Dolinger for a year. is because I’m on the Also, to future teacher side now; I’m Dolinger students, she shares her no longer on the student side,” advice about being a confident Dolinger said. performer. She was heavily involved “Never apologize before in the arts when she attended performing!” she said. “Saying Northtown, including theater, I’m sorry right before performing Harmonaires, a capella, along is not a way to go about it.” with NHS plays all four years.

staff writer


Lights, Camera, Action! NTV and drama teacher Amanda Dolinger works with NTV anchors Traveon Chenevert and Jazmine Jones, on Sept. 15 while taping the second NTV show of the school year. Dolinger is a new teacher at North Kansas City High School this year. A former Northtown student and Hornet graduate, Dolinger said she is excited to be back.


Her favorite memory is of her wedding in 2010. Her favorite foods are Chinese and Mexican food. Her all time favorite movie is the “Wizard of Oz.” Her favorite musicals are “Wicked” and “Aida.” She studied a semester in London. Her favorite musician is Adele.

Check out our news website!


We’ve got spirit! Northtown’s cheerleading squad performs at the Homecoming Assembly on Friday, Sept. 16. The cheerleaders also did a joint performance with the Pommies after all the Hall of Famers were inducted.

Vote in our poll, view photos, and read the Buzz online at


Left, right, left Senior Zach Slater, freshman Brett Sears, and senior Courtney Kubayko play their sousaphones during the Homecoming Parade on Friday, Sept. 16.


Sept. 21, 2011

Northtown survival tips for freshmen Elizabeth Craig design editor

Sometimes being a freshman is hard. The jump from middle school to high school can be stressful or fun depending on how it is approached. Here are some tips from seniors, staff, and teachers so that calls of “STUPID FRESHMAN” can be avoided in the hallways.

Staff Members say:

Seniors say: Stop acting like you’re cool because you’re not. Trust me.

Put on your Nikes and do it.

Enjoy high school now because it will get worse.

Don’t skip classes. It’s not Northclay, it’s Norclay. Get it right. Don’t be annoying, don’t block the hallways, don’t be loud, respect seniority and don’t trash Northtown. Don’t worry, be happy. Be nice to the seniors or we’ll push you in the tunnel. There is one; you just can’t travel through it. Whatever you do, don’t put everything off to the last second.

Be nice to everyone. Don’t mess around and keep grades up.

Buy a tunnel pass; they are so helpful.

DON’T WALK SLOW! Stop thinking you’re on top of the world because frankly, you’re not. Get. Out. Of. The. Way. Dress warmly in the winter… it gets cold. Don’t scream!!! It gets on other people’s nerves. If you see somebody you know smile and wave. don’t be irritating.

If I could count the amount of fun times in IB classes with strawberries, I could make a lot of smoothies. So stay in IB and drink your smoothies. Don’t let the seniors know that you’re stupid or you’ll be a target. Don’t be afraid to bring your own lunch. DON’T SCREW UP!!!

Go to class. Stop stopping in the middle of the hallway. You make the seniors push you into the wall. It’s a fire hazard and annoying.

Use your class time wisely starting now.

Don’t stand in the middle of the hallway and talk. Don’t party.

All of your grades count for graduation and sports eligibility. don’t fall behind. Mr. Bates is the short assistant principal, but he’s fit, so don’t mess with him. Don’t let yourself get into a hole with your grades, because you’ll get dirty trying to get out. Start thinking about what you want to do in college. Talk to Mrs. Mason about Gold Medallion if you haven’t already. Do your A+ tutoring before senior year.

Teachers say: Learn to take good notes now. Getting involved in a sport or club will help you make new friends and feel more involved. Get a planner to keep track of your homework and actually use it. Double check your spelling in foreign language classes so you don’t learn it wrong. Be organized from the beginning, it will make a less stressful life. Be positive, smile, and go out on a limb everyday to meet someone new.

Freshmen, follow these tips and you can have a good first year at Northtown. If they don’t work, just remember, next year is your chance to say “Stupid Freshman!”


The Hornet’s Buzz

Destiny Jones

Amanda Hadley

Alayha Graham

Homecoming queens 2011

Melaina Bixler

Jocelyn Davidson

Hannah DeVries

Erin Niederberger


The Homecoming queen candidates pose at The Screenland Theatres on Armour Road. Front row: Amanda Hadley. Hannah DeVries, Destiny Jones, and Alayha Graham; Back row: Erin Niederberger, Melaina Bixler, and Jocelyn Davidson.

Endia Moore staff writer

At the Fall Sports Assembly, the Homecoming Queen candidates were announced and later presented with their escorts at the Homecoming assembly. The Homecoming Queen candidates are Melaina Bixler, Jocelyn Davidson, Hannah DeVries, Alayha Graham, Amanda Hadley, Destiny Jones, and Erin Niederberger. Destiny Jones has been a junior varsity cheerleader for one year, a Varsity cheerleader for three years, and has been on the track team all four years. “Oh my God! Am I really nominated?! I can’t believe it! My dreams are really coming true!” said Jones when asked what her first thought was when she heard her name called as a 2011 Homecoming queen candidate. “I didn’t expect it because I talk to very few people in our senior class. It made me realize that I am more known than I thought!” she said. Destiny’s favorite part about

Homecoming was being able to walk in front of the crowd at half time. She chose her escort, William Rice, because she believes he is organized, responsible, and productive. “It’s unreal,” Jones said. “It still hasn’t hit me that this is my last everything in high school!” Alayha Graham has been a freshman and junior varsity volleyball player for two years, a varsity volleyball player for two years, and a member of Leadership for two years. “Did Jocelyn really just break her flower?” she thought when she was nominated. “I was kind of embarrassed because everyone said I would but I didn’t think so,” she said. Alayha’s favorite part about Homecoming was seeing everyone in the crowd at halftime. Amanda Hadley has been on the dance team for all four years and is currently a member of Leadership. “Oh my God!” Hadley thought when she was called as

a candidate. “No one can really expect to be nominated because anything can happen,” she said. Her favorite thing about Homecoming was being able to enjoy it with her friends. “I am really excited. This made my senior year!” Jocelyn Davidson is currently on the Varsity Volleyball team and on Leadership. “I was actually kind of shocked, but still excited,” said Davidson. Davidson also said that she did not expect to be nominated at all and that she is looking forward to the whole experience. “I’ve always wanted to be nominated and now that I am, I cannot wait.” Hannah DeVries has been a member of cross country all four years. “Did they count right?” she thought when called as a Homecoming Queen candidate. Like most of the girls, Hannah said she did not expect to be nominated. “My favorite part about Homecoming was showing everyone up on the dance floor with my sick moves,” she said.

Erin Niederberger has been a member of the marching band for four years and the symphonic band for two. “Ack!” she thought when nominated. “I sort of knew there was a pretty good possibility,” she said. Erin’s favorite part of Homecoming was having fun with her friends. Melaina Bixler has been a varsity cheerleader all four years. “I was kind of questioning if they really called my name. I was really excited!” Melaina said, describing her first thoughts. “I didn’t really expect to be nominated, people told me they thought I might but I just figured they were being nice,” she said. When asked what her favorite thing about Homecoming she said, “I just love the whole atmosphere of Homecoming Day.” Northtown students elected Hannah DeVries as their 2011 Homecoming Queen. She was crowned during the football game’s halftime on Friday, Sept. 16.


Sept. 21, 2011

Midnight Madness kicks off football season Lauren Williams editor-in-chief

Two weeks before Northtown students returned to school, Midnight Madness occurred. On Aug. 10, 2011 at midnight on the football field at Northtown, the football team and the coaches all gathered to have a practice that all the fans could watch and enjoy. Along with the football team running drills and practicing, the Pommies performed on the sidelines to boost the crowd. One t-shirt with two different backs was sold and all the t-shirt profits went towards the Touchdown Club, which helps the football team with their funds. Overall, the team’s goal was to show the fans who went that this was a new year and that this would be a turning event for the season. Coach Douglas is the new head coach, and recently joined the Northtown staff.

“I think it really got our team energized and showed everyone that we are working towards turning a new leaf,” said football manager Ryan Welliver. All of the football team participated in the practice and ran both defensive and offensive drills. “We want to learn how to play and not only learn to compete in the field, but in the classrooms as well,” said Coach Douglas. Overall, the practice showed the Northtown community that the team was striving to become a better team than the year prior. “I really enjoyed going. It wasn’t what I expected-but all the players looked determined and ready for a new school year,” said senior Abby Reyes. LAUREN WILLIAMS Hut, Hut, Hike Northtown practices in full uniform for the first time on Aug. 10 2011. The practice served as a morale boost for the players and their upcoming season. Players ran defensive and offensive drills to warm up and practice their skills.

New football coach, new team? Ryan Welliver

Being competitive is not just in events, but also in life. This year Northtown has a Coach Douglas doesn’t just new head football coach, Leon want to change the team as a Douglas. whole, but also as individuals. He is not new to the football During their lunch periods program entirely; he was a part on Tuesday through Friday, they of the varsity staff have to go to the last year and was hospitality room The team needs to eat and watch promoted. He is working to to “definitely film from previous improve the team games and practices. do a better not just in football On Mondays but academics too. when they are free job in the The team needs to go out to eat, classroom so Douglas to “definitely do wants a better job in the them to stay on the all our athletes sidewalk, never walk classroom so all our athletes will be will be eligible on the grass, and eligible to play,” said always to be polite to play.” Coach Douglas. and have manners. “Compete,” Even though the -Coach yelled Douglas to varsity team is 0-4 Douglas the team at halftime currently, Coach of the Lee’s Summit Douglas believes this West game. football team has the He was talking about being potential to change in the next competitive during a football few years or less. game, since they were losing 35-0 at the half. staff writer


Face-off The Hornet offense prepare to start a play against the St. Joseph Central Indians on August 26. This year, Northtown has a new coach, Leon Douglas, and is trying many new methods. As the season goes on, the school will see if his changes make a difference.


The Hornet’s Buzz

Boys’ Soccer team aims to be victorious Alex Grant staff writer


The boys on the varsity Hornet soccer team played their second game of the season on Friday, Sept. 2. They fought against the St. Pius Warriors, narrowly defeating them 3-2. Senior manager Analyssa Lopez said, “I thought it was a great game! You could tell our boys were working very hard and it was exciting to watch their work pay off!” The game started out like any other soccer game Northtown has played, although the Pledge of Allegiance was missing due to technical difficulties. The Hornets played hard and efficiently, keeping the ball away from the Warriors for most of the first half. Senior John Platel scored the first goal of the night on a corner kick, giving the Hornets the lead.

With two minutes left on the clock before halftime, the Warriors scored against sophomore goalkeeper Josh Folken. The second half began with both teams fighting for the lead. For the Hornets, senior Josh Medina scored, putting Northtown in the lead once again. The game turned rough as the Warriors became desperate to defeat the Hornets. Elbows were thrown out and players were pushed down, resulting in a yellow card for each team. The Warriors scored a second

time, tying up the game. Senior Alija Omerovic came through for the Hornets, scoring the last goal of the night, putting Northtown up by one. In the end, the Hornets prevailed, winning the game 3-2. “It was a big game and it’s good that we got a win early in the season because now we have momentum going into the Kansas/ Missouri (KAMO) tournament,” Omerovic said, The game was an exciting victory for both the players and the fans. The Hornets pulled through and gave everyone something to cheer about.

“I thought it was a great game! You could tell our boys were working very hard and it was exciting to watch their work pay off!” -Senior manager Analyssa Lopez

He could go all the way. Senior Josh Medina runs down the field to score a goal against St. Pius. Northtown won that game 3-2.

Volleyball has high hopes for conference Endia Moore staff writer

The Hornet varsity volleyball team played their second game of the season against Oak Park at home. The girls played a very intense and close game, but the ending scores were Northtown, 20 and Oak Park, 25 for the first game. The second game ended with Northtown scoring 18 points and Oak Park scoring 25. The Lady Hornets say they always try to go into games with a positive attitude for a positive outcome. “Our competitiveness helps us and kills us at the same time.” said senior Alayha Graham. When the competition began to get tough, the Hornets fought hard to catch up with the Northmen.

“As a team, we could communicate better but we always come together when the game gets tough. We motivate each other to pick it up and focus towards the next point,” said junior Ashley Griffin. Not letting the last two games bring down the varsity team’s confidence, the new coach Michelle Strack still aspires to have a winning season, receive team academic awards, and place top three in conference. “We have a lot of different strengths but we are not consistent with them,” Strack said. When asked what she was most looking forward to about the season, Coach Strack said watching the team develop and come together as a team works hard and encourages each other.


Lady Hornets in action Senior Kayla LeDoux keeps her eye on the ball during Northtown’s game against Oak Park. The Hornets lost, but they’re staying positive. Coach Strack still has high hopes for the rest of the season.

Sept. 21, 2011


5 Emily Anthony staff writer



fashion trends


EMILY ANTHONY Sweet Shave Junior Ashlin Taylor shows off her haircut and gauges. Both are trends that have been spotted around Northtown.


Ear-stretching had made its way into the classrooms of Northtown. Gauges can be found in all different sizes in the ears of all different kinds of students. Junior Hunter Smith said “I love being able to put random objects in my ears, like pencils.”

A current trending hairstyle is the partial shave. Sophomore Alex Smith has had hers since August. When asked what drew her to this trend she said, “I wanted a mohawk, but I have no balls and I love this haircut.” Junior Ashlin Taylor has had hers for about two and a half years. She said that she initially shaved it because she had thick hair. However, she also said, “It looked bad growing out. I hate it, and it makes one side of my head look bigger than the other.” The partial head shave is definitely an eccentric trend, however it’s also a big commitment.

EMILY ANTHONY Tweet, tweet! IB counselor Martha DeVries has a feather hiding in her hair. Bird-inspired decorations have been flying around the school. “Mr. Hinnenkamp loves it,” DeVries said.

TREND 2: EXTRA SOCKS/SOCKS WITH SANDALS Back in the day socks with sandals was one of those things you just didn’t do. Now, it’s common to find guys in the hall wearing multiple pairs of socks with shoes and sometimes even with sandals. When asked what drew him to the trend, senior Grayson Gist said, “More socks, more swag.” He also reasoned that socks are necessary with sandals “because if people see your feet getting all sweaty, it’s gross.” Once a fashion faux pas, multiple socks with sandals is now a functional trend.


EMILY ANTHONY Watch auf! Juniors Frederick Reidel and Lasse Fuss sit outside for lunch.


EMILY ANTHONY Taboo? Trend? Three Northtown students display their socks with sandals, or multiple pairs of socks with regular shoes. Senior Grayson Gist said, “More socks, more swag.”

This year at Northtown it seems like our campus is full of Germans. Junior Frederick Reidel is one of them. When asked his favorite part about being German, he replied with “Mercedes.” There is a stereotype that Germans make the best cars, which is why Frederick loves being a part of it. Whether you’re from Germany or of German ancestry, being German is arguably the best back to school trend walking the halls of Northtown.

Recently, little stripped pieces of bird have been making their way into girls’ hair everywhere. Mrs. DeVries, the IB counselor, has been seen around the school with a piece of bird in her hair too. When asked what drew her to this trend she replied with, “My hairdresser suggested it and I take all of her suggestions.” DeVries went on to say that she loves her feather but her favorite part about it is that “Mr. Hinnenkamp loves it.” As odd as it may seem, bird feathers are adorning hair everywhere.


The Hornet’s Buzz

Kauffman Center newest addition to KC skyline Andrea Johnson staff writer

A place that is no stranger to world-class performers, Kansas City now has a world-class venue to match. The new Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts (KCPA) opened the weekend of Sept. 16 with performances in the Center’s two main halls – the Muriel Kauffman Theatre and Helzberg Hall – on the 16 and 17 and a free open house Sept. 18. The newest addition to the Kansas City skyline, the KCPA was designed by Moshe Safdi and Associates, in collaboration with acoustician Yasuhisa Toyota and has been lauded both for its superior acoustics and eyecatching design, according to the KCPA’s website. And the performing arts center is accessible not only to those who can afford season tickets to the symphony or ballet – in fact, several Northtown students and faculty members will have the opportunity to participate in the KCPA’s inaugural season. Senior Jordan Hollis, who studies dance six nights a week

at the Kansas City Ballet (KCB), is excited to audition for KCB’s performance of The Nutcracker, a Kansas City favorite, which will be held in the KCPA rather than its normal home, the Music Hall. “I just can’t wait to dance on a stage that means so much to the performing arts world,” Hollis said. “I heard there isn’t a bad seat in the house!” She points to the Kauffman Center’s combination of Helzberg Hall and the Muriel Kauffman Theatre as a wonderful improvement to the city’s arts community. “With the Kauffman Center we now have a central home for all of the performing arts, which will really bring the art forms together,” Hollis said. Band teacher Carrie Epperson, who performed at the KCPA’s free open house with the Kansas City Wind Symphony, was looking forward to performing in a hall that equals the best performing arts centers across the globe. “I performed at Carnegie Hall a few years ago and it was amazing. I’m really excited to get a similar experience here in Kansas City,” Epperson said. Though they are not

performing there, juniors Erika and Jessica Rambo are also participating in the opening of the KCPA by volunteering for the usher crew. Erika Rambo has been impressed both the acoustics and the design of KCPA. “It’s really hard not to be enticed by the shell shape and the acoustics surrounding you, almost like it’s reeling you in. It’s not like you’re watching someone [perform], you feel like you’re part of it,” Rambo said. Jessica Rambo has also been impressed by the design of the KCPA and believes it fits right in with the setting of downtown Kansas City. “The second you walk in the doors, the windows showcase the Liberty Memorial and it’s right next door to the Convention Center and Union Station. It’s a very distinct building that calls a very distinct city home,” Rambo said. What show are the sisters particularly looking forward to attending at the KCPA? They both agree: Yo-Yo Ma. “I’d love to hear the way his cello sounds in Helzberg Hall and it’s always been a dream of

mine to see him in concert,” Erika Rambo said. Though ticket prices are higher than usual for this season, students who would rather be in the audience than on stage or backstage can experience the KCPA in several ways. For example, the Kansas City Youth Symphony’s spring concert

on April 22 in Helzberg Hall will be free to the public and an opportunity to witness the finetuned acoustics. Information on shows, ticket prices and volunteer opportunities are available at:

PHOTO COURTESY OF KAUFFMANCENTER.ORG Performing arts The Kauffman Center of the Performing Arts, located at 16th Street and Broadway, opened the weekend of Sept. 16. Several students and faculty are participating in the inaugural season of the KCPA.

Book Reviews Zoe Lewis staff writer

“A Piece of Cake” by Cupcake Brown

ZOE LEWIS A daughter of Cambodia remembers... Loung Ung’s novel First They Killed My Father, a heartrending story about survival in Cambodia, is available at the school library. Check it out and read it yourself.

Every morning, you walk through the doors to conquer yet another day at school. The hallways filled with different people, different stories. The laughter and shouts are welcoming you in and yet you feel alone. Not a single one out of roughly 1400 kids at this school feel the pain you lock inside. We all have our secrets. Let Cupcake Brown reveal her secrets to you; find strength. Cupcake Brown’s gut-wrenching memoir, “A Piece of Cake”, is a bittersweet treat for the mind. The brightly-sprinkled book

cover illustrates the intense emotions Cupcake’s story brings alive. Her story begins at the young age of eight on a typical snow day. She then steps out of bed to discover a life-changing series of hardships. By page nine you won’t be able to resist taking another bite. Cupcake’s compelling life story is nothing sweet yet will leave you enlightened. Dig into “A Piece of Cake” and throw away those lonely mornings at school.

“First They Killed My Father” by Loung Ung Pop-tarts for breakfast, cheeseburger for lunch and chili for dinner. This is what a typical child might eat today, unless you suffer from an eating disorder...right? Well sadly that isn’t the case. Loung Ung details the struggles of one of

millions of children in Cambodia in her autobiography “First They Killed My Father.” Ung is a voice loud enough to not only reach twelve countries and published in nine different languages, but also wake today’s youth to an important message. This woeful story told in a 6 year old’s voice is nothing similar to what you were taught in history class. If you are one to take action for those in need, Ung will open your eyes and broaden your passion to help others to many horizons. Instead of checking Facebook while you have your cereal, pick up “First They Killed My Father.” Ung’s corruption of innocence will follow you through all three meals, to help you savor every bit of the story behind one child’s struggle in Cambodia’s genocide.


Sept. 21, 2011

State government says: Don’t talk to your teachers Matthew Howerton staff writer

Everything said outside school via Internet and text messaging should be morally and mentally limited. Yet he government should not overstep its bounds so far that it watches over conversations in the public school system. If any group should make regulations, it is the school district and board who rightfully have the final say. “The theory behind the bill is great, because a sexual pedophile should lose their certificate of teaching for committing a crime. But the only problem in the bill is the communication restriction clause, where contact between students and staff is removed, which is ridiculous. We need communication between our students and staff. “If anyone is in the right position to decide how to regulate communication, it is the school board and voters, not state legislature. But if the bill is shown as constitutional by a judge,

then of course the policy will be enforced because rules are made for safety,” Assistant Principal Bates said. Of course students should be the highest priority in a teacher’s career, so they should not even have the idea of harming a student. The trust between teachers, administration, staff, parents, and students is a strong bond where it is enough to have the capability of communication. For many students and teachers, technology improves the school relationship. Out of a small survey of 38 students, 36 have made contact outside of school in the past week. With multiple answers, 18 have contacted a school staff member (teacher, school coach, etc.) via text messaging, eight contacted a school staff member via non-school related websites, and nine have contacted a school staff member via a school-related website.

There is so much contact between students and staff in our school, shown by so few numbers. And communication is a great value of Northtown! Thankfully, MSTA, Missouri School Teacher Association, was granted an injunction for the courts to determine the constitutionality of the clause. Then, on Sept. 14, the bill was revised and passed by both the house and the senate. The revision takes out the clause “162.069” and replaced it to where the school district must create their own electronic communication policy by March 1, 2012. I hope the school board realizes the necessity of communication between teachers and students and creates an appropriate policy. If we maintain the current status, Northtown will progress greatly into a better school. Students and teachers should voice their opinions to school board administration.

“The football game.” -Junior Al Canole

“Seeing everyone dressed up for Spirit Week.” -Sophomore Zoe Smith

“I don’t care for it.” -Senior Dylan Underwood

“Having fun and seeing the Queen get crowned.” -Freshman Alizi King

What do you love about Homecoming?


Deleting friends off of Facebook has been known to be a huge offense in teenage society. Now there’s a great excuse for students to offend their teachers, because the Missouri state government may enforce our school district to restrict all student and staff contact outside of the classroom. The new law revolves around the sexual harassment case of a woman named Amy Hestir Davis, who claimed she was sexually abused by a teacher as a junior high student. In response, Missouri created a public policy to protect students, hoping to prevent sexual harassment and abuse situations from happening again. Overall, the bill is a necessity for school districts so that students may be protected. But many criticize “MO SB 54”

for crossing the line of regulating communication. Senate Bill 54, nicknamed the “Facebook law,” has gotten a lot of media coverage. All contact between students and teachers/staff is heavily restricted in the clause “162.069” under the bill. If a student would like to reach a teacher for educational reasons, the bill requires that the conversation must have a third party, the school administration. Also, it forces teachers to not have non-work related social websites where the school cannot reach the address. When the student is 18 years of age or older and has graduated, the student and teacher are allowed to make contact. The student is no longer categorized under the clause as a “student”. It makes teachers and students jump through hoops just talk about school concerns. Understandably, a teacher shouldn’t want to contact a student (or vice versa) for social reasons.

z z u

B e Th ff a t S

Editor-in-Chief Lauren Williams Copy Editor Erin Niederberger Design Editor Elizabeth Craig Staff Writers Stormy Allen Emily Anthony Jamie Cone Alexandra Grant Matthew Howerton Andrea Johnson Zoe Lewis Endia Moore Cierra Murphy Tierra Samuel Ryan Welliver Adviser Mrs. Mary Prichard

Policies of the Buzz • The North Kansas City High School newspaper, The Hornet’s Buzz, is part of the educational curriculum of North Kansas City School District. Although the paper is a class activity, NKCHS students may submit materials, such as stories, photography, or art, for publication consideration. Students should bring any submissions to Room MN-219. Submissions may be edited for content, length and grammar. • If you have any suggestions for the staff, e-mail, or contact Lauren Williams or Mrs. Prichard in Main 219. Letters to the Editor may be emailed, or mailed to North Kansas City High School, 620 East 23rd Avenue, North Kansas City, Missouri, 64116.

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The Hornet’s Buzz

NKC Buzz > Vol 78, Issue 1 > Sept. 21, 2011  

NKC Buzz > Vol 78, Issue 1 > Sept. 21, 2011

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