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12.20.11 THE


The student publication of Sunrise Mountain High School

Volume 16 Issue 3

COOP kids sell candy canes, sales benefit needy families Laura Johnson Staff Reporter

Photo Illustration by Haylie Konakis

“Please buy a candy cane for fifty cents.” These are the words that every student hears as Christmas comes around. That’s right the preschoolers from COOP sold candy canes around campus from Nov. 28 to Dec. 2 to raise money for the food banks to buy food for needy families. The candy cane sales are a very rewarding experience for the COOP kids. “They think that it is great,” COOP Teacher Ms. Jody Dowler said. “We read a book about filling buckets and they say they are filling the families’ buckets and their tummies. The kids think that the food they give them lasts forever.” The COOP kids know

where the money is going and who it will help. “The needy families might write a note saying thank you for the food and we can write a note saying you’re welcome,” COOP kid Liam O’Neal said. “[The people we give the food to] might live in dirt and we can bring in toys and Christmas presents for them.” “[The sales] are good for the needy families so they can get lots and lots of food,” COOP kid Ethan Jack said. “It filled my bucket.” As of Nov. 30 Ms. Dowler was very confident that the sales would be as successful as always. “[The sales] have gone really well,” Ms. Dowler said. “Most of the sales are in between classes but some teachers ask us to go into classrooms and that’s

when we sell the most. I expect to sell out; we always do.” COOP started helping food banks nine years ago. When they first started, the kids would actually go to the grocery stores and take baskets and put food in them. They can’t do that anymore because of different regulations but the candy cane sales are still going strong and continue to help food banks during the holidays. By helping others, the COOP kids are actually sacrificing something of their own. “The kids give up a lot of their free time like recess,” Ms. Dowler said. The sales were so successful that after only two days of selling candy canes all of the flavors were gone except cherry and peppermint.

Students raise money for sixteen year old cancer patient Emma Miller Staff Reporter

Cancer is a disease that affects everyone in some way, shape or form. Katie Wagner, a sophomore at Boulder Creek High School , was shaken by cancer in a very drastic way. “She has stage four bone cancer and she’s now going through chemo,” said Katie Mote, a sophomore at Sunrise Mountain who is currently fundraising to aid Wagner with the hospital expenses. Senior Zach Paulson is also helping Wagner in

any way he can. “I’m just going around collecting donations [and I’m] going to different clubs [to collect money],” Paulson said. “I’m planning on setting up in front of stores just raising awareness about Katie Wagner.” Mote is doing her part by selling bracelets that help raise awareness about Wagner. “We’re selling bracelets for five dollars each, so we got like five hundred dollars in one week,” Mote said. Mote and Paulson are

just a few of the students raising money for Wagner. “I know that a lot of people in Student Council are carrying around boxes like we do for other fundraisers; we just carry around a box and ask for donations,” Mote said. There is also a website that provides more information about Wagner and her illness. “[The website] has different fundraisers that you can participate in,” Paulson said. The website is www. and

provides dates and times for fundraiser events and photos from past events. There is also the Wagner Family Support page on Facebook that keeps people updated with important information about Wagner’s situation and ways that people can help. Along with raising money, Mote believes that people should tell others about Wagner and her story. “[People can help by] keeping her around and spreading the word about her,” Mote said.

Kindness Campaign spreads unity on campus

Kellie Reynolds Online Editor

The creative writing class created the Kindness Campaign to spread unity throughout the campus. Junior Jaci Tino thought of the idea when remembering a past project of the creative writing class. “Last year in this class,

we did a happiness project,” Tino said. “It kind of stemmed off of that.” English teacher Eric Berge did not comment on what the class had planned because he “want[ed] it to be a surprise.” “[Jaci] thought unity would be a good thing for our school to focus on, but we didn’t know how,”

Mr. Berge said. “We switched to kindness.” Junior Shannon Logan, who is also in creative writing this semester, was excited to be a part of the Kindness Campaign. “I felt like we could really make an improvement, a movement in the school,” Logan said. The class has so far put up posters promoting courtesy, and more projects are underway. Logan thought reactions have been mostly positive for the campaign. Mr. Berge was not sure. “I don’t know [how people are reacting],” Mr. Berge said. “I hope positively. [The creative writ-

ing students’] reaction to it is that they enjoy doing it. I don’t know how we’d measure [the reactions].” Logan believed the school was due for a change, as there was “too much hostility in school.” However, Tino’s goal for the project is more internal. “Within our class, it’s just supposed to change ourselves,” Tino said. Berge, Shannon and Tino all agreed that the signs of kindness were important in daily life, however it was difficult to explain why. “You never know what someone is going through was,” Logan said after a pause. “You never know what kind of battle they’re going through. Just the simple act of holding open a door can make a difference.”

Photo by Haylie Konakis

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02 Spotlight 12.20.11 Ireland exchange program allows students new memories Sierra Pritchard Staff Reporter

Look down at the rushing rivers, gaze up at the blue sky above, and stare at the lush green grasses that cover the landscape. Ards, Northern Ireland, is this place, and students can receive a chance to travel there with three other students in the Peoria School District. Students can stay with other participating students’ families in Ireland, while they will travel to Peoria. “Four Peoria high school-aged youths and four Ards high school youths will participate in the summer exchange,” according to a Power Point provided by Julie Selbach. “Peoria ambassadors stay with a family in Ards, Northern Ireland, and Peoria ambassadors and their families host their Ards peer in their home. [And the] city of Peoria pays for the airfare.” The trip will last four weeks, and students have a chance to gain new memories and learn about the culture of the Irish. “I believe the thought [for the program] was that if young people had ex-

periences that helped them learn that people of different cultures have more things in common than those that are vastly different, the benefits would pay forward for years to come,” Assistant to City Council Terri Smith replied during an e-mail interview. Stereotyping is a huge issue that is spread throughout the world. One reason the exchange program was created was to put a stop to stereotyping. “My guess is that the 32 Peoria youths that have experienced this exchange are probably far better at looking at people for commonalities as well as an appreciation for new traits that are intriguing to learn more

about,” Smith said. Traveling can be a little scary, especially without your parents. Not to worry though, as the parents that will be taking you in at Ards will be certified, and ready. “Both communities do the best we can to assure families that the family they will share with meets expectations,” Smith said. “Extensive background checks are done on the adults in homes both here and in Ards. We facilitate communication between families as soon as the pairings are made, and we encourage both the kids and their parents to ask all the questions they have and to share as much information as

they can.” The deadline to apply is Dec. 30, with your health records, passport, as well as other items. Your parents have to their own requirements as well when you apply for the program. According to the Power Point given by Selbach, “[The student applying must] be a resident of Peoria, Arizona, be at least 15 years old at time of travel; not yet a high school senior, hold or be prepared to apply for a passport within the next two months. Also, [you must] be in good health, [have] proof of health insurance coverage, promote and support the program and talk about the experience, and have a GPA of 3.0 or higher.” So why don’t you take the chance while you can, experience new memories, and also create new memories for the lucky students in Ards, Northern Ireland, so that all of you can have a fantastic experience? To have this experience, you can find more information about the trip, talk to Mrs.. Selbach, or contact Terri Smith at

Laura Johnson Staff Reporter

were a number of applicants who applied to get the job. The applicants were narrowed down until the one who was best qualified for the job was chosen. Just three words sum up Mueller’s impression of the new job. “I love it,” Mueller said. Some people may have noticed that there is also another new figure on campus right now. Jim Caruthers, who students know as the man who checks parking passes as students are driving into the parking lot, is out on medical leave after having surgery right now. Terrie Riegel is the person who is filling in for him and doing the duties of tending the sweep room and directing traffic after school.

Mueller starts job as new security guard As of November, Dan Mueller has replaced George Woodman as a new security guard on campus. Woodman left the position to pursue other careers. Assistant Principal Clay Carpenter said that Woodman had been in the banking industry before getting the job of a security guard. The economy has been slow and he could not find a job until an opportunity recently opened up for him. Mueller will be doing the same kind of duties as Woodman did as the new security guard. Mueller was hired through the normal process. Mr. Carpenter said that there

Attendance rule keeps disease at bay Ryan Sampey Staff Reporter

MARCHING ON: Marching band performs in the morning for Channel 3 on September 23. Last month the band placed eighth in Super State.

Marching band scores at Super State Katelyn Rey Staff Artist

Marching band placed 8th at Super State In November. “It’s really good to place 8th,” marching band director Chris Vail, the marching band director, said. “There were 30 bands at State so that means we scored higher than 22 bands.” Their placement actually went up one since State; at the regular state competition they scored

9th. State is everyone in Arizona and Super State is the championship that leads after that. “[The bands we worried about were] Basha, Hamilton and Chandler.” said Mr. Vail. Kassandra Furlong, the secretary of band, was personally worried about Deer Valley. “But we beat Deer Valley,” Furlong said. “Which was pretty good because they beat us before.” It was actually Sun-

rise’s first time making it to Super State. The band even claimed the highest score in the west valley. The marching band performed a “Pass in Review” type concert to celebrate their achievement on November 30th. The band played many songs that they usually perform during football games at half time. “The performance was great and it was a good experience,” said Furlong. “We normally don’t do performances like that.”

Cough! Sneeze! Cough! Everyone has been sick at some point. When you are sick you enough chances are going to miss school. This can be a hassle for both the students and the teachers. How many days can you miss? What happens when you miss too many days? “When you’re absent you need to call to verify the absence,” said the attendance secretary Heather Romero. “Once you hit five absences you’ll get a warning from your counselor and when you get to 10 absences, you could have a possible loss of credit.” Losing a credit is a big deal. That could mean summer school or even a repeat of a year. It is not set in stone, though. You can appeal for credit. “We check files and documentation while [the students] were absent. If they

W hich

don’t have anything in their file then they have to appeal,” Ms. Romero said. “A parent or student goes in front of an appeal committee and tries to let them know why they were absent. They’ll try to get their credits back.” The school makes sure students are not caught off guard. When you get to three absences you have a note sent home and when you get to five you will have to get a warning paper signed by your parents. This makes it so the students aren’t suddenly told that they’re going to lose a credit. Students find the rule fair and support it. “It gives you a chance to make up your work and time if you really are sick, but it doesn’t give enough time for students to abuse it,” Bryce Johnson, Sunrise Mountain freshman who has missed multiple days while sick, said.

holiday song does sunrise like ?


1: M ariah C arey - “A ll i want for C hristmas is you ” 2: W ham - “L ast C hristmas ” 3:M ichael J ackson - “I S aw M ommy K issing S anta C lause ” 4:J ustin B ieber - “U nder the M istletoe ” 5: E lvis - “S anta C lause is C oming to T own ”

30 25 20 15 10 5 0






The Spotlight



Students decide what is better: semester long classes, year long classes Anissa Saenz-Ochoa Editor

At the end of each semester, Sunrise students start to feel the pressure of finals and the excitement of winter break approaching all at the same time. Due to the school’s block scheduling, students will return from winter break with brand new classes, a new variety of classmates and a new group of teachers. On the other hand, a handful of students are currently placed in yearlong classes. This brings up the question: do students prefer their yearlong classes over their semester-long classes? Or is it nice to come back from winter break with a change and fresh start? The end of the semester becomes bittersweet for some students like fresh-

man Alyssa Santa Cruz whose least favorite part about block scheduling is saying goodbye to everyone halfway through the year. “You meet all these people and then you never see them again,” Santa Cruz said. While saying farewell may be a downside to the end of the semester, sophomore Jacob Zimbelman has plenty to look forward to. “It’s always nice to be done and get new stuff,” Zimbelman said. Junior Nicole Podgurski agrees with Zimbelman; she likes coming back from winter break with a fresh start. However, Podgurski prefers her year-long classes rather than her classes that are a semester long.

“I think year-long classes are better because you have more of a chance to learn more,” Podgurski said. Zimbelman finds his semester-long classes to be more fun. He also thinks block scheduling allows students to dig deeper into their studies. “I prefer semester-long classes,” Zimbelman said. “I like them more because you get longer class time so you get more in-depth in the material. You’re also able to focus more on your four subjects.” Whether students like or dislike block scheduling and the end of the semester may vary, one thing students like Podgurski, Santa Cruz and Zimbelman can agree on is looking forward to winter break.

Sunrise students prepare for college Alex Curtis Staff Reporter

It’s that time of year again when seniors begin planning, applying and researching what they want to do for college. At Sunrise Mountain, seniors are given the opportunity of meeting representatives from in-state schools such as Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University and University of Arizona. Senior Bailey Moses plans on attending the U of A in Tucson next year and had to do a lot of pre-planning to get to that point. “I had to fill out applications, go tour the campus and check out the city itself,” Moses said. Being that Moses is going to be living on campus and won’t be in her home city, she needed to go check out the city to make sure it was the right environment for her. It is very important that students who are planning on moving

away from home go and tour both the college itself and the surrounding area. Moses is looking forward to college and knows the importance of going off to college and fending for one’s self. “I’m excited for it! It’s a necessary step in growing up and living on your own,” Moses said. Moses is right: going to college is not only important for the academic and career opportunities, but the life lessons that it teaches one along the way. Many students say that they can’t go to a university or a big-name school of their dreams because of money. However, right out of high school there are ways to have chunks of tuition paid for or sometimes even all of it through scholarships. “I got a few small scholarships so far and I plan to keep applying for as many as I can,” Moses said. Students can never start planning too early for college, whether it’s touring the campuses or applying for scholarships.

ACT test key to acceptance into college Helpful hints and tips for scholarships Braden Taylor Staff Reporter

Some high school students may wonder, “What is the ACT?” or “Why should I take it?” The ACT is a standardized test used to get into college. Most colleges accept either the ACT or the SAT, but the ACT is a nice alternate because it is a multiple choice test based on curriculum. The content of the ACT is not secret so testers that put time into studying will see scores improve.

There are four subjects in the test: English, Reading, Mathematics and Science. Testers can also take an optional 30 minute writing test. The test consists of 215 total questions which results in three and a half hours of testing; four hours if tester takes writing portion . Each subject is graded individually and scored for the amount of correct answers in that section. Each correct answer is not counted against you; so guessing cannot hurt the tester’s score. The ACT could be considered being graded on a curve because the total number of a tester’s correct answers gets compared to all other testers who took that same test and then converted to a scale from 1-36, 36 being the highest score possible. The ACT if offered six times a year and can be taken by a person of any age. Middle school students can take it and even adults looking to go back to college; there are no age restrictions. The test can also be taken as many times as the tester would like and the tester can choose their best score to send to colleges. Check with your local high school or the ACT website, for more information about where and when the ACT is offered.

Natalie Kurtz Staff Reporter

High school is a time to think about your future and plan out what you are going to do later in your life. Most students plan on going to college right after they are finished with high school, but college can be expensive. The best way to make college less expensive is to earn scholarships. Ms. Fair, who works in the career center, is very helpful at finding scholarships. Also, there are websites that can offer applications and requirements for the scholarship that is best for an individual.

H elpful

“There are so many scholarships [and] some students can get free ride,” Ms. Fair said. Some seniors have received scholarships when they applied for college such as senior Adrienne Sebade. “I applied for admission to [The American University of Rome] and they awarded me the scholarship,” Sebade said. Scholarships can add up throughout the years of a student’s time at college. “[I receive] 5,000 Euros ($6,694) a year and renew it each year,” Sebade said.

scholarship websites - for types of scholarships To prepare for college - - for different schools For other educational options - - to keep in contact with colleges Bill Gates’ scholarship programs -


Playing Field


Jared Turley displays great attitude, skills on court Arianna Saenz-Ochoa Page Designer

Senior Jared Turley is very familiar with the game of basketball. When he was a young boy he began to develop a love for basketball and still does to this day. Now it is his senior year,which means his last and final year on the Mustang basketball team. For many senior athletes, it is sad when the final year of playing at Sunrise quickly approache. Turley has a different approach. “It’s my senior year and I’ll try to make the most out of it,” Turley said. Given that Turley was raised playing basketball and has been playing since he was six years old, he has accumulated and improved his skills over time. Coach Jason Pasinski has been able to see this happen over the years Turley has been in high school. “He’s really come a long way and de-

Swoosh: Senior Jared Turley plays basket ball for the school. Turley started playing basketball as a young boy. Photo by Arianna Saenz-Ochoa

B oy ’ s B asketball so far ... L ost 45-43 to C opper C anyon L ost 67-37 to P eoria L ost 63-40 to K ellis

veloped into a really solid varsity player,” Pasinski said. Turley especially has a talent for scoring. [What makes him stand out is] probably the fact that he can score creatively,” Pasinski said. “He’s very active away from the ball and he moves. He can score a variety of ways; he’s a good shooter. “ The difficulty of juggling school and sports can cause an athlete’s day to become very busy. But to Turley, what makes it all worth it is the chance to be able to play the sport he enjoys the most. “Every day there is always commitments but I’d rather do basketball than anything else,” Turley said. Pasinski made it clear that Turley is not only an all around phenomenal player, but he’s also a basketball player that works hard and has a great attitude about everything.

We expect to get things going in a “positive direction. We’ve improved in

each game and will continue to do so. It’s just a matter of the guys finding their rhythm and playing together. We’ll get there,” Coach Jason Pasinski

Girls basketball season off to strong start Christian Parravano Staff Reporter

Swoosh! Another victory in the bag for Sunrise Mountain’s girls basketball team! The girls basketball team has been showing other schools what they’re really made of with one win after another. As of December 13, they most recently played against Youngker and Agua Fria. Being 3-2, playing against these teams only improved their record because, of course, they won. When playing against Youngker, Sunrise won 61-56. Against Agua Fria, Sunrise won 49-27. With past games to look it, it’s easy to see that the Sunrise girls basketball has no shortage of teamwork. “A lot of us have played together since freshman year so we all know and trust each other pretty well,” Varsity girls basketball player Idara Ekpoh said. “The team is looking good.” Even though new people have joined the team, it seems they have fit in per-

fectly with the rest of the players. Their contribution to the team is just as much as any veteran player from the team. “We’re a lot better than we were last year.” Ekpoh said. “Even though we have new players, we all communicate really well and we all love each other so it’s working out great.” Ekpoh said. Continue showing all of your support to the girls playing basketball for our school whenever needed. Their next game is a home game against Kellis on Tuesday, December 2nd.

G irls B asketball as of 12/13: “W e are 4-2 in league play and 5-4 overall ( including tourna ments ),” C oach J ennifer K ubo

SLAM DUNK: Girls basketball conquers school from all over Arizona.Coach The team is currently 4-2 in league. Photo by Christian Parravano

“W e are doing well so far ,” C oach J ennifer K ubo

St. Clair, Sechrest sign with college for next year Alex Adams Staff Reporter

Sunrise Mountain has produced many opportunities for students, both academically and athletically. Two seniors, Mckenzie St. Clair and Melissa Sechrest, are going to be attending two out-ofstate colleges on a full ride scholarship to play softball. St. Clair will be attending BYU (Brigham Young University) and Melissa Sechrest is attending Cal State Fullerton. “I was offered the scholarship during my

freshman year,” St. Clair said. “I also committed that year.” St. Clair was excited to be offered a scholarship, as was her family. Sechrest was offered her scholarship later on in her high school career. “I was offered my scholarship October of last year, [as a junior]”,Sechrest said. “I accepted the scholarship a week later.” Sechrest also says that she was glad to get offered the scholarship. Sechrest had always hoped to get offered a scholarship, as did St. Clair. St. Clair, however, was caught off guard by it.

“I was not expecting a scholarship that early, if anything,” St. Clair said. “That was surprising.” Sechrest made getting a scholarship one of her goals and worked towards accomplishing it. “I was expecting to get a scholarship,” Sechrest said. “I have been working on it my whole life, so I was hoping for one, and I finally got it.” Both seniors expect nothing less than to win; their goals for the season are to win. “All the way,” St. Clair said. “Let’s go all the way.” Sechrest said some-

(Front left to right): Melissa Sechrest, Mckenzie St. Clait, Brennen Smith, Courtney Geith all prepare for college. All four students signed with a school. Photo by Desi Ruiz

thing very similar to that. “Win, we better win; I hope to win,” Sechrest said. “We have a new

coach and it’s going to be a fun year.” These two seniors have high hopes for the soft-

ball team this season, and they would like nothing more than to go out on a high note.

Playing Field


Boys varsity soccer displays optimism Christian Parravano Advertising Manager

1 B oys V arsity

S occer record as of 12/14: 2 wins , 3 losses 1. GOAL: The JV soccer team matches up against their rivals the Liberty Lions. The game took place at the Liberty Lions’ field. 2. RUN IT: Boys on the JV soccer team race down the field. The boys played against Liberty on Dec. 6.


Don your colors, Sunrise, this year’s boys varsity soccer team is ready to take the world head on. The boys varsity soccer team has shown true optimism to the season by starting the year going 2-1, beating Shadow Mountain and losing to Greenway, then bouncing by beating Liberty. Varsity player Nick Parrack believes that this team will be successful. “This year will probably be the best,” Parrack says. “Last year we got to playoffs, but this year we will keep going. We might even get first or second [in state] and go further.” This year, teamwork is at its best, and the players are ready to win. “Quite a few people from this team have been going for two or three years,” Parrack says. “Being with the same people for so long makes the games more comfortable. We’re able to pass more and rely on each other.” The amount of confidence Parrack is placing on this year’s team is promising. “This year we are just good,” Parrack said. “We just need to work on defense a little bit then we are all set.” Boys soccer plays again on Jan.12 at Deer Valley.

Freshman Panacci plays varsity soccer Alex Adams Staff Reporter

In her own words, freshman Alex Panacci finds it an “honor” to be a part of the varsity girls soccer team. Sophomore teammate Brylee Hawkins thinks Panacci is a great addition to the team. “She fits in really well, she gets along with everyone and she’s just an allaround good person and player,” Hawkins said. Panacci feels the same way. “My teammates are really accepting and they understand I am a freshman and I feel like I am

getting along,” Panacci said. “I love it.” Hawkins says that it is a great opportunity for any freshman to play on varsity. Both Hawkins and Panacci describe what the one thing is that separates Panacci from other freshman. “Heart: she loves the game and she just wants to be there all the time and do her best,” Hawkins said. Panacci thinks her dedication and hard work help her stand out. “I give my heart and I train really hard,” Panacci said. “I dedicate so much

time to soccer and I give it my all.” Hawkins said that what she expects from Panacci is to help the team win, and Panacci said that she wants to improve as a player and succeed. “I get to play a majority of the game and it is really rewarding,” Panacci said. “I hope that I continue to improve as a player and I want to win.” Both players said that all they expect from this season is to improve from the last season, and they would like to prove that they cannot only compete in state, but win it as well.

KICK IT: Sophomore Te’Leigha Jones and the girls varsity soccer team faces Liberty. The girls lost their game. Photo by Sierra Pritchard

Wrestling team shows promising season Christian Parravano Advertising Manager



1. PIN: Sophomore Ryan Call faces his opponent from Liberty. The matches were held here at SMHS. 2. TAKE DOWN: Freshman Garret Weissinger wrestles during his match against LHS. These matches took place on Dec. 1. Photos by Haylie Konakis

This year, Sunrise Mountain’s wrestling team has started strong. Winning 31 of 40 matches on Wednesday, November 30, this year’s wrestling team is showing promise. When the team won these 31 matches, they were playing against Chaparral, Centennial, Fairfax and Brophy. This year, the Sunrise wrestling team didn’t gather as many people as the year before, but that doesn’t seem to be stopping our wrestling team. With less people, varsity wrestler Tristen Decker speculates that the team even seems better this year. “The team has less

people this year,” Decker said. “Not everyone went out [for wrestling] again. But we are a little better. We’re doing well.” The Sunrise Mountain wrestling team seems strong this year, so be prepared to see lots of victory coming our way. With each team member pulling his weight, there should be no shortage of victory in Sunrise’s record books. “Individually, the team is really great,” Decker said. “But we we’re kind of iffy on duals.” With more games ahead, the Sunrise students need to show their support so wrestling can do their best. The next wrestling game is on the December 29th against

Ironwood. Be sure to head over and show your support. Even after the school break resumes, show the other schools which school is best.

V olleyball A wards All District Team:

1 st T eam :

Brianne Glidewell

2 nd T eam :

D ina B uzimkic

H onorable M ention : M onica F isher T aylor G lidewell

I f you want to know more about S unrise M ountain sports and athletes visit mustangexpress . org

F ootball A wards All Section Team Players: 1st Team: John Drago-DB Devin Koivisto-DL Eric Keena-P Ryan Hawkins-K Ryan Carney Ash-OL Elijah Castro-RB

Honorable Mention: Scott Peterson-C Max Shepherd-QB Drew Johnson-OL

All District Team:

Ryan Hawkins-Kicker 2nd Team: Elijah Castro-RB Ryan Carney-OL Devin Koivisto-DL Honorable Mention: Max Shepherd-QB Scott Peterson-C Drew Johnson-OL Eric Keena-P Elijah Castro-Returner John Drago-DB


2 Cents


Students should respect the bathroom Have no holiday blues this year Every day, I walk into the girls bathroom praying to high heaven that more than one stall is open. Girls are gross, yes high school ladies I Emily Bridgewater am talking to you on beEditor half of many other girls and the janitors. First of all, I do not want to walk into a disgusting bathroom where toilet paper and other feminine hygiene products are left on the floor. The metal box is there for a reason. Another thing girl, don’t flush those products. I am pretty sure that it will not go down. Actually I know that for a fact because it usually over flows the toilet and then it backs up a toilet for the whole day. Then that usually leaves one toilet out of commission for the day. I am not the only who is disgusted, but what about the poor janitors? Try; try to be civilized while using the washroom. Try not to get mess all over the bathrooms. Although it is the janitor’s job to clean the bathroom, it is not their job to pick up after you like your mothers. They are just in to tidy up the place, not be tortured by girl products and clogged toilets. This brings me to my next issue, please flush the toilets. This isn’t your house and I cannot imagine that you would leave the bathroom with nasty

Photo taken by Emily Bridgewater

in the toilet. What would your mothers say? Just remember that this isn’t your house, your mommy isn’t here. I am sure your mom’s would be appalled at how you treat public toilets. Look, I know that the toilets are faulty, like fine. But don’t go in there and use the stalls that are already clogged. That provokes more problems for the janitors and other girls. It is just common sense to not use a toilet that is broken. You wouldn’t use a broken mirror because it is messed up and unusable. Although this is directed to girls, I hear through the grapevine that guys are just as bad. I wouldn’t know because obviously I don’t go in the guy’s bathroom.

Black Friday sees brutal buyers Black Friday has seemed to become somewhat of a hazard. Every year there is a slew of nutty stories about Black Friday shoppers. Brooke Meyers With this year’s Black Staff Reporter Friday starting earlier than ever before, it leaves even more time for crazed bargain shoppers to fight over discounted TVs, iPads and ZuZu pets. Stories are surfacing of physical fights over products and even a woman thinking it appropriate to spray pepper spray in fellow shoppers’ eyes. Other incidents such as people fighting over two dollar waffle makers in Little Rock, Arkansas and two women were sent to a hospital after they were attacked while trying to buy a thirty-five dollar smart phone Really human race? Is this what we Image courtesy of have come too? Fighting over a ten dolThese incidents should be looked on lar discounted video game? Every new violent story published as a lesson, not to be repeated, but every should be a disgrace to society. Yet it year the stories get worse. Discounted items are not worth being is used as entertainment and just for harmed or harming someone. laughs.

The winter holidays are the best time of the year. People are happy, it’s chilly outside but all cozy in, gifts are being given and there are lights everywhere glittering in the chilly nights; it’s just Katelyn Rey Staff Artist a wonderful time. Christmas has got to be my favorite holiday of the year. Any holiday that gives out so much happiness is a great one. It’s all about the joy of gift giving and celebrating. People are just in a happy mood in anticipation of yummy Christmas food and gifts. Yeah, there is stress from shopping but personally I enjoy looking for gifts for my friends and family. As long as you don’t look for them out of an obligation it’s really fun to buy presents for people. You can find some crazy, random, befitting things if you look hard enough. One thing I don’t really understand is what all the hubbub is with hating Christmas music. I personally love it when things like Jingle Bells and Frosty the Snow Man come on in the stores. Christmas music is so joyful and fun, and you only get to hear it for a few months. Though, I would like to know why it has to be after Thanksgiving for them to start playing holiday music. People get all in a tizzy when it plays before then but it’s not like there’s a whole

We want to hear from YOU!

Picture drawn by Katelyn Rey

lot of Thanksgiving music they can play over the radio. People need to calm down and just enjoy it.

Simply scan the QR code with a smart phone to be transported to the Mustang Express website. There you can comment on stories, read about

school activities, look at pictures and you may even win a fabulous prize while you’re there!

The Mustang Express Newspaper Staff Editor-In-Chief Natasha Hossain

Section Editors

Anissa Saenz-Ochoa Emily Bridgewater

Online Editor Kellie Reynolds

Advertising Manager Christian Parravano

Staff Artist Katelyn Rey

Reporters/Page Designers Alex Curtis Alex Adams Ryan Sampey Natalie Krutz Brooke Meyers Sierra Pritchard Braden Taylor Laura Johnson Emma Miller Haylie Konakis Arianna Saenz-Ochoa

Editorial Policy The Sunrise Mountain High School Mustang Express is a student newspaper whose purpose is to inform the community of events that are relevant to SMHS and its surroundings, to interpret and analyze current events and to provide entertainment. The staff aims to be fair and impartial, accurate and responsible, and to adhere to the SPJ Code of Ethics. Letters to the Editor are printed at the discretion of the editorial staff and SMHS administrators. Opinions voiced in the letters do not necessarily represent those held by the staff or Sunrise Mountain High School. The staff reserves the right to edit all letters for grammar and content. Anonymous letters will not be published. Facebook: SMHS Newspaper

The Scene



Top tech gifts to buy this holiday Alex Curtis Staff Reporter

The end of 2011 is near, Winter break is right around the corner and holiday jingles are floating in the air; with the spirit of the holiday season in full fledge, consumers are buying the hottest gifts on the market. Experts have given their thoughts on the top gifts for the holiday season based on record breaking sales from Black Friday, Cyber Monday, as well as the latest trends. According to Yahoo Shopping, The iPhone 4S is high on the list for top gifts. With a retail price ranging around $199$873, depending on contract status it is a must have for the modern teenager. Also high on the list with Yahoo is the rising tablets. They are the new piece of gear that every tech enthusiast wants. Another hot gift according to Yahoo is gift cards. This year people are saving the time on lists and going straight for the gift cards because they are universal and can be used for anyone, instead of fighting for the latest gifts. Google Shopping also laid down what the most popular gifts are of the season this year. The PlayStation 3 Move bundle is a top pick this year, being that the price has been cut in half from what it

was last year. Its competitor, the Xbox 360 Kinect bundle is right there with the PlayStation, also having been cut in half price wise since last holiday season, including bundled items such as games and movies. The major retailer, Target, is prepared with the lists of gifts for giving. The Samsung 32” flat screen is on sale this year for only $329. That is a deal breaker considering that flat screen TVs are on Target’s top deals and gifts. More hot gifts given from Target are winter apparel items. Scarfs, sweaters, hats and mittens always make great holiday gifts for any age or gender. There are many major retailers with holiday deals that are too good to pass up. Stores like Wal-Mart, K-Mart, Toys R Us, and Best Buy all have the tops gifts of the year and are slashing their prices this season to draw in the shopping crowd. Whether it is TV’s, phones or winter apparel, there is a store out there that has a deal out for it. Some stores even have shopping guideline sheets available at their front counters. Shopping tip from Alex: Sure the deals are great now in the season, but after the new year they will be even better.

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Vegans, vegetarians spice things up during the season Natasha Hossain Editor-In-Chief

During the holiday season, many people look forward to seeing family, exchanging gifts and, most importantly, eating a wide variety of foods. The holiday season is a the perfect excuse to get together with families and friends, and what better way to spend the time than enjoying numerous feasts. Tables all around the world are filled with delicious fruits, vegetables, sauces, breads and meats, but for a select group of people options are much more limited for them. For Thanksgiving, turkeys are a big hit, but for vegans and vegetarians their meals are a bit different. “[On Thanksgiving]I ate Seitan turkey breast smothered in vegan “giblet” gravy, sun- dried cranberry-toasted walnut stuffing, gluten free roasted garlic mashed potatoes, sweet smoked paprika corn, brown “butter” asparagus and Brussels sprouts and salad,” guidance counselor Julie Selbach said. “All vegan.” Mrs. Selbach has

been a vegetarian for two and a half years and a vegan for about two years. Her decision to choose this lifestyle was based on many different variables. “It was partially for health reasons,” Mrs. Selbach said. “I had always been interested in vegetarianism and have always preferred vegetables. I just felt better and healthier when I ate that way.  It was just the right thing for me.  Later, as I educated myself and learned more, I became interested in animal rights issues.” Although eating options are sometimes limited, Mrs. Selbach always finds ways to make it work. “I have to be more conscientious about what I eat and I read labels and ask questions,” Mrs. Selbach said. “I have to plan ahead.  It’s easy at home but restaurants and other people’s homes are a bit more complicated. If I go to someone else’s house, I usually bring my own food and food to share.” Nonetheless, everyone has their own tastes whether it be for health reasons or for their own choices.

Cartoon drawn by Katelyn Rey

Gluten free for the holidays

Katelyn Rey Staff Reporter

Wheat is like poison to us gluten-free people and that can pose quite the issue during the holiday season. The average holiday meal consists of turkey or ham, veggies, some sort of potatoes, stuffing, rolls, casserole, a delicious desert and maybe even some deviled eggs. Now, most of this stuff sounds, fairly, gluten-free but you’d be surprised by what sort of ingredients are in these seemingly innocent things. For example many dressings that you would use for salads or pasta are not gluten free. Always do your research and check

for any traces online. Turkey or ham isn’t normally a big deal as long as it’s made without preservatives. Almost all preservatives are packed with wheat or flower but watch the sauce you put on it, just as you would for salad dressings. Certain barbeque sauces, gravies and glazes can contain traces of wheat. Fresh veggies rather than canned or seasoned ones are always a great healthy alternative for your cooking needs. Corn on the cob, green beans, peas, broccoli; almost every vegetable that’s grown naturally is gluten free. Try checking out a local health foods store like

Sprouts or Whole Foods. Now stuffing and roles can be tricky. Udi’s (one of my favorite brands) makes some tasty gluten free bread that can be used for stuffing or buttered rolls. And if you want to do it old fashioned, and cook it in a bread maker, Whole Foods and Sprouts also offer gluten free bread mixes. Same goes for cookie mix. Those two stores offer some really good cookie mixes. In my opinion any chocolate chip cookie mix is good. Chocolate helps to counteract that granny taste that many wheat free products have. Look out for mixes you can cut out into shapes.

Those are actually quite hard to come by. When you go organic food shopping check the back of the box for how the food is prepared. If the box of sugar cookie mix mentions refrigeration and the ability to be rolled out and cut to shape you’ve found that rare mix. Most icings and sprinkles are gluten free. Practically, all that’s in them is sugar and food coloring but always check your labels just in case. That’s the biggest thing to remember during shopping, check the labels. In doing that you should have the perfect gluten free holiday.

The Scene



Well known movies come back to spotlight Sierra Pritchard Staff Reporter

Several celebrated movies over the years have come back to the big screen to gain the spotlight once more. In September, Disney’s The Lion King came to theatres in 3D. This created the new thought that classic movies could come back to theatres, thus creating opportunities for other wellknown movies to show again and possibly gain even more fans. “I’m king of the world!” We have all heard this quote one time or another. Titanic will be steaming back into theatres in April 2012, near the remembrance of the tragic day the ship sank on April 15, 1912. Now one of the most beloved and romantic movies of all time can be seen in 3D. With all of the romance and action

that caught so many viewers by the pure heart and soul. Here the steam hissing and the ship engines pulsing throughout the theatre which can send a chill down your spine. “You don’t know the power of the dark side!” Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker are two of the most famous film characters in history, starring in the famous science fiction movie, Star Wars. Now the first Star Wars movie, The Phantom Menace, will be coming out in 3D in 2012 to the joy of many fans. The Star Wars saga will continue to come out in theatres if the first movie is a success. See the light sabres slashing and the power of the force. “All aboard!” The joyful Christmas classic, The Polar Express, will be showing in IMAX at selected theatres to yet again “wow” the audi-

ence with its innocence and beauty. This movie is back by popular demand and will begin showing on Dec. 12. Ride the train once more and see the beauty of Christmas. Another Disney movie is set to come out Jan. 13. Following the success of The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast will be showing in theatres in 3D as well. Disney lovers alike will crowd around to see the magic in 3D. There can be many reasons why all of these movies are coming back, while they are most likely showing for viewers’ attention and for more money. Many studios want money so they can create more movies to grab the viewers attention which equals more big bucks. Many classic and celebrated movies are strutting back into theatres to capture the viewers’

Twilight Controversy!

hearts once more. So grab some popcorn and hit the theatres as the classics come out to theatres once more. No need to worry though movie lovers because there will always be new movies coming out to the lime light as well. For example, Sherlock Holmes; A game of shadows is coming out on Dec. 16, and Mission Impossible; Ghost Protocol is coming out on Dec. 21. Other anticipated movies for 2012 include, The Hunger Games, based on the best selling series by Suzanne Collins, will be coming out on March 23. The Avengers will assemble on May 4, bringing together Marvel super heroes like Iron Man and Thor. Enjoy the classics in theatres while they’re here, because viewers never know when they will show again.

New Year’s Eve movie excites audiences Arianna Saenz-Ochoa Staff Reporter

A nonomys quotes from students : Fanatics: “Edward Cullen is my husband<3” “I live for it...” Haters: “I hate it more than bubbles in the eye.” Easy go-ers and renters: “Forget twilight. Harry Potter all the way.” “I am a fan, just not obsessed and crazy.”

Take a chance on Greyson Chance

Braden Taylor Staff Reporter

Taking a chance on Greyson Chance’s new CD Hold On ‘til the Night is worth the risk. Some may say that seeing a young

teenage boy on the cover may turn potential listeners away; but do not let an image be the deciding factor whether you listen to this CD. Chance really surprised me when I heard the first song Waiting Outside the Lines. Expecting to hear Justin Bieber 2.0, Chance shows that he has a slightly different genre and voice than Bieber. At 14 years old, Chance not only has great vocals but he plays the piano for his songs, too. He really

knows how to make music sound wonderful. He has the talent of making the music flow and blend his voice with the song. It will be interesting to see in his future as his voice matures and he grows to see if he will have to make changes to his music. As for right now, there is no reason not to listen and enjoy what Chance is creating right now. Looks can be deceiving, so take a chance on Greyson Chance.

I spend my New Year’s Eve with my family and friends munching on appetizers, playing board games and waiting for that special moment on TV when the big ball drops in Times Square, New York City, declaring the beauty and hope of a new year. Some of you may have New Year’s Eve traditions, while others see it as another typical night. New Year’s Eve gives audiences the chance to relate to and enjoy several ways people celebrate the night before the beginning of a new year. After you watch this lively movie, you will leave the theatre feeling hopeful and excited for 2012. The movie is directed by Gary Marshall. Marshall first directed Valentine’s Day and he followed the success of this holiday themed movie with New Year’s Eve. Just like Valentine’s Day, the cast of New Year’s Eve is full of familiar actors and actresses of all ages. The stars in the film include: Zac Efron, Michelle Pfeiffer, Sarah Jessica Parker, Ashton Kutcher, Abigail Breslin, Robert De Niro, Lea Michele and Josh Duhamel, just to name a few. With the several stories in the movie, every emotion is covered. For

instance, there is the humorous story of two competitive couples awaiting the birth of their babies in the hopes of claiming a grand prize for having the first baby born in the new year. There is the heart tugging story of a terminally ill, elderly man wishing and wanting to experience his last new year on the hospital roof watching the ball drop in Times Square. Just like the elderly man previously stated there is the story of a teenage girl wishing and wanting to receive her first kiss in Times Square at midnight. In the movie each character and story is related and is intertwined

one way or another. This movie is perfect for all ages. The theatre seats were filled with teenagers, parents and/or elderly people. This is evident that the movie attracts an audience of all ages. In addition, New Year’s Eve was filled with exceptional music that had you dancing in your seat. Throughout the movie you will be laughing, smiling and shedding a tear. The movie shows the beauty of a magical experience of how one city comes together at one night to celebrate the hope for a better new year. This movie is worth seeing and will not disappoint.

Mustang Express_December2011  

The December 2011 issue of the Mustang Express

Mustang Express_December2011  

The December 2011 issue of the Mustang Express