April 11, 2024

Page 1

The cost of one last bite

APRIL 11, 2024

Businesses concern rises with street construction

Larry’s Dawg House and The Slice House among other businesses on West Union Street are losing money because the construction on the street is blocking entrances and causing customer confusion.

West Union Street is a one-way road starting at the intersection of state Routes 56 and 682 and ending at the entrance to O’Bleness Hospital with the flow of traffic going toward Court Street, according to a previous Post report.

Dillan King, general manager of Larry’s, located at 410 W. Union St., said the hotdog restaurant lost about 40% of weekly sales, compared to its typical 10% to 15% of weekly growth since the construction started.

The construction has also led to different lunch rush hours, King said. Now the business sees the lunch rush at a “random

time” around noon, instead of the usual 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

“It's been really hard for my staff to adjust in those times because sometimes we do get hit really hard, but I can't overstaff constantly because we have parameters,” King said.

The city contracted the project to a company called Shelly & Sands to maintain some of the city’s underground infrastructure and upgrade pedestrian accessibility, Councilmember Alan Swank, D-4th Ward, said.

The inconsistent fluctuation in customers is making it difficult for King to hire new employees or offer his current employees additional hours.

King currently has 40 employees but usually has 60 to 65 employees during the spring. He is nervous about the summer because the restaurant supplies hotdogs for the Southern Ohio Copperheads’ concession stand. During the summer months, Larry’s typically has about 75 to 80 employees between the restaurant and the concession stand.

“(It’s) going to be really hard because we've lost staff because of this, and it's hard for me to hire, or even play with the idea of hiring people because I can't give them hours,” he said.

John Gutekanst, the owner and CEO of Avalanche Pizza and The Slice House, spoke at an Athens City Council meeting to address his business’ situation because of the construction.

“ We've lost almost half of our business every single day. I've got employees that I'm going to have to take off the schedule,” Gutekanst said. “I don't know if we can even wait five more months.”

Income tax revenue for the city has decreased since the start of the West Union Street construction because of the loss of employees at the business, Swank said.

“It is also about the city income tax, but it's about the viability of small businesses that employ lots of people, and it's those small businesses that employ lots of people that are the lifeblood of any vibrant

community,” he said.

Swank said the construction on West Union Street affects the surrounding businesses and should be the city’s number one priority right now, outside of everyday priorities, including sewer and water systems, fire protection and police protection.

He said he has heard from other business people besides King and Gutekanst, including a representative from Shriver’s Pharmacy & Wellness Center.

The pharmacy has recently had to purchase an additional car and hire another driver to deliver prescriptions to customers who don’t want to pick them up.

“If you're getting another car and you're hiring another driver, that's an additional expense that you had not budgeted for,” Swank said.

The city is currently working on solutions, like speeding up the project or creating a two-way traffic pattern, Swank said.

The current one-way traffic flow is causing safety concerns, Swank said. Some drivers are dodging traffic barriers and driving against the flow of traffic.

The construction project is also affecting businesses beyond West Union Street.

King said his suppliers work on commission and the suppliers are losing money because Larry’s now only orders 50% to 60% of its usual supplies.

“It's affecting a lot more than just Larry's Dawg House itself,” King said. “I wish there would have been some different planning put in place.”

PAIGE FISHER NEWS STAFF WRITER The sign of Larry's Dawg House on West Union St. in Athens, April 5, 2024.

Instruments stolen, identity theft occurred



A report was taken for damaged exit signs at James Hall, according to the Ohio University Police Department.


According to the Athens County Sheriff’s Office, deputies responded to a possibly intoxicated driver in The Plains

After patrolling the area, they were unable to locate the blue sedan that had been reported.


OUPD responded to Luchs Hall for an incident of anonymous telecommunications harassment.

OUPD took a report for the threatening messages.


The Athens County Sheriff’s Office reported that deputies spoke on the phone with a caller who was allegedly being harassed by an ex-partner.

After receiving screenshots from the ex’s friend of vague harassing statements, deputies advised the caller to block the ex and

look into a protection order.

Deputies tried to make contact with the ex but could not get a hold of the ex.


Athens County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to Lexington Avenue in Chauncey for a trespassing complaint. Upon arrival, deputies decided things were civil.

After informing the caller of the eviction process, deputies resumed patrol.


Athens County Sheriff’s Office deputies reported to Bethany Ridge Road in Guysville to conduct a well-being check on a female resident.

Deputies determined the woman was in good health and suggested she contact her family. No further action was taken.


The Athens County Sheriff’s Office was called to Bobo Road in Guysville with reports of a prowler. While deputies were on their way to the scene, the caller canceled. The caller said the alleged prowler was just family. Deputies returned to patrolling.


OUPD responded to a musical instrument


Social Engagement & Student Org Events

Thursday, April 11

The Paradox of Dogmatism

Dr Michael Veber

6:30 - 7:30 pm

Ellis Hall 226

SCAN for More Events

Friday, April 12

Painting with Bob Ross 2:00 - 6:00 pm

Baker Center 3rd Floor Atrium

all are Welcome! - Free Snacks

Variant Fashion Show 6:00 - 8:00 pm

Central Venue

29 Carpenter Street

April Observing Nights 8:30 - 10:30 pm

Ohio University Observatory

174 Water tower Dr

* Weather Permitting

theft in Glidden Hall. A report was taken.


Athens County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to Mill Street in Chauncey for a report of a stolen vehicle.

While deputies were on their way to respond, they were notified the vehicle had been repossessed rather than stolen.

No further action was taken, and Athens County Sheriff’s deputies resumed patrol.


Athens County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a caller on state Route 56 in New Marshfield concerning a fraudulent check being cashed.

Deputies took a report and resumed patrol.


Athens County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a commercial alarm on North Plains road in The Plains.

Upon arrival, deputies found the business to be secure. No further action was taken.


Athens County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a residential alarm in Rome Township but found the residence to be se-

April 3rd - April 26th


April, 12-14

Friday and Saturday

6:00 - 8:00 pm

The Union

Sunday 10:30-12:00

Galbreth Chapel

Thursday, April 18

Airbrush Event 3:00 - 7:30 pm

Living Learning Center

Design Exhibition

Interior Architecture Design Grp

5:00 -10:00 pm

Upper/Lower Studio

Friday, April 19

Friday’s LIVE Season 52 E06 hosted by Fridays Live Seniors 8:00 pm

Studio C (RTV 515)

Saturday, April 20

April Observing Nights 8:30 - 10:30 pm

Ohio University Observatory

174 Water tower Dr

* Weather Permitting

Monday, April 22

Senior Cap Decorating 6:00-8:00 pm

Baker Theatre Lounge Supplies Provided

cure. Deputies resumed patrol.


Deputies from the Athens County Sheriff’s Office were again dispatched but for a commercial burglary alarm in Millfield.

The area was checked and found to be secure with no problems.


Athens County Sheriff’s deputies responded to another alarm on Center Street in New Marshfield.

After contacting the resident, deputies determined the alarm was set off accidentally.

No further action was taken.




Tuesday, April 23

Senior Mix & Mingle 2:00-5:00 pm

Latitude 39

Wednesday, April 24

SENIOR End of Year Celebration

5:30-7:30 pm

Baker Ballroom Light Refreshments Provided

President’s Ice Cream Social THURSDAY

APRIL 25 1:30 - 4:00 pm College Green

* To have your event included on this calendar make sure it is registered on Bobcat Connect!



Mount Zion Baptist Church to become Black Cultural Center


Mount Zion Baptist Church, 32 W. Carpenter St., is undergoing renovations to become the Mount Zion Black Cultural Center.

The Mount Zion Preservation Society is managing the renovation efforts and has enlisted the help of the Ohio University College of Business to decide what the building should become. Students in the College of Business interviewed other students, business owners and Athens residents, and the top responses suggested adding a performance space and a soul food restaurant.

The preservation society took the responses into account, and current plans involve a soul food catering kitchen, a coffee shop, a performance space and a digital museum that honors Black history in the region.

Once initial renovations are complete, there are plans to expand even further. Retired West Virginia State University professor Trevellya Ford-Ahmed, now Ahmed, said the society is developing the idea of a Heritage Square to promote tourism and interest in the area’s history; the full plan for a Heritage Square would cost around $25 million and although

it would take a while to complete, there is local interest in the idea.

In 2013, the Mount Zion Baptist Church Preservation Society was formed. The push for the renovations began around the same time because there were plans to demolish the Mount Zion Baptist Church.

Ada-Woodson Adams, an Athens resident and a member of the Society, said she became concerned because the church was one of the only pieces of Black history left in the area.

Uzoma Miller, assistant professor of African American studies, said Black history in the Appalachian region dates back to the mid-1500s. Many Black people returned to the region as enslaved people and were vital in the mining industries, along with contributing to the regional music, oral history and folk art.

In 1911, the Athens Post Office, now Haning Hall, was built; Black architect William Wilson Cooke designed the post office. Ahmed said the Preservation Society hopes to obtain the building because it is currently vacant.

The original windows were crafted in the early 1900s and

4 / APRIL 11, 2024
The outside of the Mount Zion Baptist Church on the corner of Congress Street and Carpenter Street, April 8, 2024, in Athens. The windows are boarded up as the original stained are being repaired.(MEGAN VANVLACK|STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER) The stained glass windows on the west wall of Mount Zion Baptist Church on April 7, 2023, in Athens. (MEGAN VANVLACK|STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER)

are estimated to be very valuable, but because of structural issues, the windows had to be removed to avoid falling out and breaking.

The windows are currently being replaced with faux stained glass artwork from the artists at Passionworks Studio and will feature depictions of Black history.

Ahmed said she thinks these renovations could attract people to the Athens area.

“Hopefully it will impact (Athens) and make it a really valuable tourism area,” Ahmed said.

The project has the support of local government officials including Mayor Patterson and Sen. Brian Chavez who represents District 30, which includes the City of Athens, in the Ohio Senate. Chavez said he thinks the work they’re doing at Mount Zion is beneficial to the region.

“It just heightens the awareness of the rich history that we have in this region. It’s a beautiful building with a lot of historical value that we need to make sure we maintain,” Chavez said.

THEPOSTATHENS.COM / 5  marks YOUR spot $65 OFF CAMPUS PARKING per month Elliot Street • Athens CALL 740-594-9098 SCAN TO EMAIL @AVERYSLIFE365 AS781522@OHIO.EDU The stained glass windows on the east wall of Mount Zion Baptist Church on April 7, 2023, in Athens. (MEGAN VANVLACK|STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER)

The Plains Public Library to add adult changing stations

In partnership with the Athens County Board of Developmental Disabilities, the Athens County Public Library, or ACPL, system is implementing adult changing stations in The Plains Public Library to create more accessible facilities for Athens County residents with disabilities.

The library has been undergoing renovations since early 2023 in compliance with the Ohio Changing Station Campaign. The statewide initiative aims to provide universal changing spaces for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities and to increase community engagement for underserved populations.

Director of the ACPL, Nick Tepe, said his organization is committed to improving accessibility services across its facilities.

“Our staff is dedicated to serving all members of our community, regardless of their abilities to use our services,” Tepe wrote in an email. “There is always interest among our staff in finding ways to eliminate or reduce barriers to accessing our services … and advocate to bring those approaches to our work in Athens County. We also regularly work with local agencies and individuals to learn what they need to improve accessibility.”

Autumn Brown, director of Integrate Athens, a division of the Athens County Board of Developmental Disabilities, works closely with the ACPL and said the importance of adult changing space in the community stems from everyone’s need for assurance of a personal care space.

“When we think about universal design in our community, there’s always been changing tables for children because we know that babies and small children need that type of support,” Brown said. “But so do adults that have different abilities. If they use a wheelchair and can’t use a regular toilet, they need a changing table. If those aren’t available in our community, it limits your ability to go into all of the other activities that everyone else is doing. They have to work around the time limits of their bathroom needs.”

Becca Lachman, ACPL communications officer, said she has always been passionate about accessibility issues; however, she recently, and unexpectedly, underwent an eye operation that left her with limited visual capabilities, which enhanced her perspective.

“When we lose the ability to be able to do something we’ve always done, or when we encounter a world that’s simply not thinking about our different bodies and needs, it can be a scary and lonely place,” Lachman wrote in an email. “In my case, audiobooks have kept me going and sane in the last month,

and I haven’t spent a penny to read them, thanks to free library apps.”

Lachman credits her colleagues at the library for introducing her to the various ways people can read in the world today and for working to fight isolation in an able-bodied world.

“Not knowing if I’ll completely get my sight back, I went to the place I knew I could find support: my library colleagues,” Lachman said. “We have a brand new Digital Literacy Department to help library visitors with tech literacy. Within an hour, we’d set me up to try out various accessibility features on my phone and laptop such as dictating emails and getting my computer to read aloud to me.”

Corey Rogier, a junior studying hearing, speech and language sciences, is the president of the Ohio University chapter of Best Buddies – an organization that pairs people with disabilities and OU students for community outreach events – among other initiatives.

“I think (the adult changing stations are) a really great initiative,” Rogier said. “I think it’ll really increase that community outreach. Also, I think it’ll have an impact on the people in the community that might not have disabilities, but still support people with disabilities and want to increase the inclusivity of the library.”

Other than Ohio’s metropolitan areas, rural Appalachian Ohio has the highest rate of children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, according to the University of Cincinnati’s Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities, or UCCEDD. Rogier said he hopes his organization serves as a bridge between campus and community resources.

Tepe said the most difficult part of implementing these important initiatives is space.

“All of our libraries are space-limited, and many ideas to improve accessibility; for example, adult changing tables, require more space than we have available,” Tepe said. “In those cases, we take action when and where we are able and as we work on improving our spaces we look for opportunities to make changes that will allow us to improve accessibility.”

Despite these limitations, Lachman said the library welcomes feedback from patrons.

“We genuinely want to welcome everybody to a local library building or to our website and eLibrary,” Lachman said. “We know that sometimes, that access can look like working with a family or individual so that they can comfortably attend a program or explore a resource or service.”

6 / APRIL 11, 2024

Voting rights organizations unite for accessible Ohio elections

The 2024 presidential election is quickly approaching, leaving many wondering who the next president of the U.S. will be.

As anticipation builds, numerous Ohiobased organizations have worked hard to remove barriers to the polls, ensuring equal access to all eligible voters.

All Voting is Local, Common Cause Ohio, The League of Women Voters of Ohio and The Fair Elections Center are all organizations that work to protect voters’ rights.

Together, these groups, along with others, make up The Ohio Voter Rights Coalition, or OVRC, and partners. OVRC is a non-partisan group “of voter advocates dedicated to ensuring that our elections are modern, secure and accessible to all Ohioans.”

Greer Aeschbury is a senior campaign manager for All Voting is Local Ohio. She said the group works to protect rights through data, research and community outreach.

“We're an organization that's dedicated to removing barriers to the polls,” Aeschbury said.

Aeschbury explained part of All Voting is Local Ohio’s efforts include keeping voters up to date on legislation and polling protocols. An example of legislative change regarding voter rights was Ohio House Bill 458.

Jan. 6, 2023, Governor Mike DeWine signed HB 458 into law. The law made numerous changes to Ohio voting regulations. Now, voters must use an unexpired photo ID; the absentee ballot request window is shortened to a full week before the election; and the last day of early voting is eliminated, among numerous other amendments.

Aeschbury said All Voting is Local Ohio has taken part in efforts to inform Ohio voters about these changes before the 2024 presidential election. The goal is to ensure everyone has the opportunity to cast a ballot.

“Unfortunately, we've seen efforts by the Ohio legislature to narrow who gets to participate, making it harder and harder to participate in our democracy,” Aeschbury said. “So the things we're doing that open (democracy) up, I think are essential to the strength of our government in Ohio.”

Kelly Defour is the voting and elections manager at Common Cause Ohio. Defour explained she has also educated voters about the changes made through HB 458.

“There are specific requirements now that weren't in place before,” Defour said. “We want to make sure voters are prepared when they show up to vote.”

Even with efforts to educate voters, De-

four acknowledges there still may be some confusion regarding voting laws during the 2024 election. To combat any misunderstandings or election-related concerns, Common Cause has created the Election Protection Hotline.

“We think voting should be easy, so the election protection hotline is available for voters when it's not,” Defour said.

During election time, the hotline 866-OUR-VOTE is open to voters who experience difficulties at the polls or have election-related questions. The hotline is available in different languages, improving access for non-English speakers.

Although education regarding voting laws is important, Nazek Hapasha, policy affairs manager for the League of Women Voters of Ohio, said educating voters on ballot issues is also essential in ensuring voter access.

“The media does a really good job of highlighting the presidential election and people are already very aware of that,” Hapasha said. “It's all the other stuff that they're not aware of which we try to bring attention to.”

To help educate voters on ballot issues,

the League of Women Voters of Ohio works to create an election-specific voter guide. The guide contains non-partisan information about candidates, issues, election dates and deadlines.

Hapasha said the League of Women Voters of Ohio also works to mobilize and register voters ahead of elections.

“Our democracy is not going to be effective unless it actually represents everyone in it,” Hapasha said. “If that is going to be the case, different people have different capabilities and there has to be equity in voting for different parts of our population.”

Alexis Crosby, the Ohio State Coordinator for the campus vote project, said the Fair Election Center works to recruit poll workers and advocate for marginalized groups within Ohio.

A specific movement within the Fair Election Center is the Campus Vote Project, a program dedicated to student voters.

“We work directly with campuses to help them navigate our very complicated democratic system, with the goal to make sure that we have full participation in our democ-

racy,” Crosby said.

A piece of the Campus Vote Project is the State Student Voting Guides, a resource that outlines state-specific laws for student voters.

Crosby explained the upcoming 2024 presidential election is an opportunity to get voters talking and, ultimately, encourage regular, civic engagement.

As advocates like Crosby, Hapasha, Aeschbury and Defour prepare for the upcoming election, they encourage Ohio voters to educate themselves if possible, to help prepare for the polls. As Crosby explains, public opinion and representation is the foundation of democracy.

“We don't know what the community wants if the community doesn't show up,” Crosby said. “That's how you do community. That's how you do democracy – if everyone shows up and brings their opinion and their voice.”


Little Wing thrift store provides collectibles, support

Tucked away on East State Street is a hidden gem: Little Wing Curiosity Shoppe & Thrift Store. Upon entering the doors at 1006 E. State St., shoppers are met with a collection of individually priced curiosities — antique books, china dish sets, a dress from the year 1900 and even handmade drums.

For many local thrift fanatics, Little Wing Relief is Athens’ best-kept shopping secret. For Ukrainian citizens, it is an overseas haven.

Feb. 24, 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine. According to AP News, more than half a million people have been killed or seriously injured after two years of war in Ukraine.

A report by the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine revealed extensive violations of international human rights and humanitarian laws by Russian authorities.

Little Wing co-founders and married couple Holly Dallman and Tom Medley were devastated by what they were witnessing across the world.

“When the war in Ukraine started, we were horrified,” Dallman said. “Tom and I were sitting at the dining room table saying, ‘Well, what can we do? How can we help?’”

Dallman and Medley have a long history of searching for ways to help those in need.

“When Holly and I were first married, she said, ‘Tom, we’re going to get rich so I can give away a lot of money,’” Medley said.

After Hurricane Mitch devastated Central America in 1998, the pair was quick to step up and help facilitate international aid shipping. They have spent many years helping raise money for local nonprofits through rummage sales.

The co-founders combined their knowledge of international shipping and fundraising experience to start the Little Wing Curiosity Shoppe and Thrift Store.

Dallman and Medley met Dmitry Feld, the marketing director for the U.S. Olympic luge team and a volunteer who had been shipping packages to Ukraine. With his help, they began collecting products for relief including food, medical and hygiene supplies, relief for soldiers and a medical tent.

Little Wing Relief has collected and

shipped nearly $500,000 in humanitarian relief items to Ukraine. They have sent three 40-foot containers full of supplies with one goal in mind: to help those devastated by the war.

“(For) the shipments we send to Ukraine, every little bit of what we send, we get reports back that they're very welcome and very needed,” Medley said. “We are proud of the work we do.”

To continue funding the shipments, Medley, Dallman and volunteers work tirelessly to maintain the thrift shop, keeping everything neat and organized.

When shoppers first walk into the thrift store, they are greeted by the “Artist of the Month” display. Little Wing works with local artists to display their work and sell it.

As customers continue into the building, they are quickly met with a neat display of items. Little Wing Relief sells furniture, electronic items, kitchenware, clothing (modern and vintage) and other odds and ends.

“If it's not perfect, it shouldn't be here,” said Dallman, who works to sort through clothing and household items to ensure everything meets her standards.

Regular volunteer and retired Ohio University employee Chuck McCall helps to complete repairs around the store. McCall, also known as “the Chuck of all trades,” works to make furniture pristine again and restore antique items.

“I just like to tinker,” McCall said. “I've been tinkering all my life.”

Medley and Dallman said this would all be impossible without the help of volunteers like McCall and community members who donate and shop with Little Wing.

Everything sold at Little Wing Curiosity Shoppe and Thrift Store are donations directly from the community. All of the proceeds from the store go toward Little Wing Relief efforts.

Dallman said customers who chose Little Wing are making a direct impact.

“They're saving lives,” Dallman said. “They're giving hope to people who need it, who are desperate.”

8 / APRIL 11, 2024
27, 2024, behind The Market on State,
The store's
doors of the Little Wing Relief Shoppe and Thrift Store, March
in Athens.

Union Bingo Night provides a sober activity option for Athens

Every Wednesday night, the local bar and music venue, The Union Bar, located at 18 W. Union St., hosts an event that differs from its usual offering of live music. From 8-10 p.m., the bar is run by Caroline Bresnahan, who hosts The Union’s own Union Bingo Night, an event free for attendees regardless of age.

Bresnahan, an Athens resident, saw a place for a community event like a bingo night in Athens and decided to fill it. She was inspired by her sister, who planned her own bingo night in Cincinnati.

The Union provides all the supplies and prizes for Bingo Night, Bresnahan said. She said she has expanded the event with exclusive merch and sticker designs.

Richard Linscott, a manager at the Union, said determining the logistics of the event was tricky at first but has been working smoothly since the beginning.

“Bingo (Night) is closing in on us for a year so we have all the systems in place and everything’s good now,” Linscott said. “It was a little rocky or at first, just like finding out if we even have an audience for those things, determining like the start time that was going to work for everybody.”

Bresnahan, who graduated from Ohio University in 2016, said after returning to Athens three years ago she noticed a lack of events and engagement targeted at people who aren’t 18-22 years old.

“I moved back (to Athens) because of the community that I loved here, but being older and just … after COVID and lockdown, I lost a lot of social energy,” Bresnahan said. “So having this intentional event where I am putting myself back in that community on purpose was like definitely the instigating inci-

dent that made me pursue a bingo night.”

Linscott said that after the COVID-19 pandemic, The Union staff wanted to “consciously” use the space it had for something more wthan offering alcoholic beverages and hosting shows.

“There are just a lot of large spaces that you can use to organize that aren’t on campus or something and so we just kind of wanted to start doing that a little more,” he said. “We do have some older people and some community members that come to this stuff. So it just kind of checks a lot of boxes for ways that we’re trying to consciously use our space.”

Bresnahan said using The Union as a space for something more than just a bar has been incredibly beneficial to Athens. Union Bingo Night is an unexpected addition to a bar, but it provides a great space for people to choose whether they drink.

“The Union has definitely expressed wanting to continue to be a place for people who also aren’t just wanting the typical Athens experience, which is I think a lot of partying, a lot of going out, they also want to offer these events that are lower pressure for drinking,” she said.

Hosting an event that has grown to be a staple has been helpful for both the bar and for the Athens locality at large, Linscott said.

“We love hosting it,” Linscott said. “People really don’t come in for anything else. Come in for bingo trivia, they love it and they love the bar by extension. I think that’s kind of what the community gets out of it.”

Looking forward, Bresnahan said the future of Bingo Night potentially extends into philanthropy.

“We are always in search of a charitable organization who maybe would want to sponsor bingo,” she said. “They would

receive all the donations we make on bingo.”

The recurring event has gained significant traction among Athens residents and OU students, Bresnahan said. People of all ages and backgrounds come in every Wednesday for Bingo Night, and many people have become regular attendees.

“It’s a weekly event that people have really rallied behind,” Bresnahan said. “We have so many regulars who come back every week and we’re playing bingo, you know, not anything super crazy engaging, but I think it’s fun, it’s got really good energy. I just think it’s a really nice event that is free and a little different than what a lot of Athens has to offer.”

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The Union hosts bingo night with Caroline Curly, Feb. 28, 2024. (JUSTIN DELGADO | FOR THE POST)

The Gathering Place Presents The 8th Annual

Chris Knisely made history in Athens

Central Venue 29 E. Carpenter St.

Friday, April 19 th 4:30pm - 7:00pm

A FREE community event featuring handmade art pieces, member art for sale, voices of poetry, and a live performance by our band, The Gatherers!

Celebrating 48 years of mental health and SUD recovery supports, advocacy, community integration, healthy living, and personal development.



Since the formation of the Athens City government in 1805, there has only been one female City Council president: Chris Knisely.

Knisely served as the first female president of the Athens City Council from 2015-2023. Although she did not have a direct path to the role, her perseverance led her to open up future opportunities for women on the City Council.

Knisely grew up in Washington, D.C., and later moved to Ohio to obtain her bachelor’s degree in early childhood education at Ohio Wesleyan University. Soon after graduating, she realized she did not want to work in education and branched out into nonprofit work.

“I worked for a number of nonprofit organizations in Central Ohio,” Knisely said. “There was the (Ohio) Foundation on the Arts and the Ohio Humanities Council, and both of those I ended up getting a little bit of financial experience which served well. I think it’s good background for me.”

Knisely said being appointed as president was partly due to “being in the right place at the right time.” Before serving as president, she was an at-large representative from 2008-2015. Knisely was active with the League of Women Voters in Athens and the Neighborhood Association.

Serving on City Council was a logical transition for Knisely, as she had been to meetings to talk on the planning commission.

“At the time of the opening, I’d been asked several times to serve on City Council, probably two or three times, and finally they said there’s a vacancy that’s happening,” Knisely said.

In 2015, Knisely applied to become the president of the Athens City Council and was elected during that year. Toward the beginning of her term, she focused on working with the Transportation Committee and Transportation Advisory Committee to make Athens a bicycle-friendly and more walkable city. Although Knisely helped to make this positive change in Athens, she doesn’t take all the credit and instead emphasizes the team aspect of Council.

“We’re really blessed to work with some very talented people as a city,” Knisely said. “Both the previous mayor and this mayor have been instrumental (with their) sense of vision about what our community can be, and I think they act on it. That is a really nice working relationship between the mayor and his administration and the City Council.”

Knisely’s presidency left a permanent mark on the Athens community, as she was the first woman to step into the role. Throughout her term, she mostly received support but still experienced the intimidation of being one of the only women on Council.

“Walking into committees and sometimes

noticing that I would be the only female person can be a little bit daunting sometimes … (but) people were very accepting,” Knisely said.

Micah McCarey, the director of OU’s Pride Center and an Athens City Council member, met Knisely after she attended his workshops on racial equity and encouraged him to join the Athens City Council. He admires her work ethic and attentiveness to Athens’ needs while being a part of a marginalized demographic among City Council members.

“I hope the impact that folks like Chris have includes inspiring other girls and women to get engaged in community service and leadership,” McCarey said. “It also does take folks who are brave enough to bear the challenges that can come from being the only woman in charge, who was subjected to different kinds of pressures, just as a result of living in a patriarchal society.”

Eden Truax, a freshman studying mathematics, wrote a paper on Knisely for her Women and Writing class. She said it was refreshing to hear Knisely’s career did not go according to plan at first, but she still became successful in the end.

“I thought it was really interesting to just see how her life unfolded,” Truax said. “It’s always nice hearing her perspective (as) somebody who’s gone through it and graduated college and (said), ‘I’m not going to use this at all, I’m just going to do (something) totally different.’”

Knisely has also done a large amount of philanthropy work during her career, and she is passionate about the future of Athens and making sure OU students are knowledgeable about issues happening in the community.

Today, Knisely is retired but still working with the Athens City Council in a smaller capacity. Two of her main focuses are environmental work in Athens and saving the buildings part of The Ridges.

“I’m so committed to The Ridges and those buildings that are there can be saved, and also, that we develop that into a key part of the university and in the community,” Knisely said.

Becoming the first female president of the Athens City Council did not define Knisely’s career but it certainly was a large step in creating equality within leadership positions in local government.

10 / APRIL 11, 2024
DAILY CONTENT ONLINE thepostathens.com

Student Senate election engagement: by the numbers

Student Senate Votes

The Student Senate race is complete following last Tuesday’s election. According to the 2024-2025 Senate representatives’ announcement on Instagram, this year’s election yielded the highest voter turnout in nearly 10 years with approximately 10.5% of the student population submitting a ballot. Despite the over 2,000 ballots cast, students have the option to not submit votes for any given position on the ballot. Therefore, there is a wide variation in vote count across representative positions.

There were 11 representative positions present on the ballet that are omitted from the below graphs, as the lack of voter feedback did not warrant their inclusion.


Each bar represents the number of Ohio University students who submitted a Student Senate ballot in the given year.

Student Senate ballot distribution

Of the ballots submitted, the graph below depicts the percentage of votes per position. For instance, 97% of voters submitted a vote for a presidential candidate.

Senate Appropriation Commission (SAC): Allocates students’ general fee dollars to student organizations registered with the Campus Involvement Center.

Residential Senators: Individuals who hold the title of senator in the Residence Life Commission. The senators work to address students’ needs that live on campus.

THEPOSTATHENS.COM / 11 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20 2020-21 2021-22 2022-23 2023-24 2024-25 2,097 2,202 673 793 815 854 638 1,158 2,281
500 1000 1500 2000 2500 Sourced from Student Senate’s Instagram. Built with assistance from Alex Imwalle. (KATIE MILLARD | EDITOR-IN-CHIEF) President Vice
Treasurer SAC
Delegates at Large
Sourced from Student Senate’s Instagram. Built with assistance from Alex Imwalle. (KATIE MILLARD | EDITOR-IN-CHIEF) 97% 90% 91% 72% 67%

Miami leads early MAC football power rankings

With transfer portal season wrapping up in college football, rosters are beginning to take shape for many of the Mid-American Conference’s premier programs. Although Miami and Toledo seem to be above the rest of the competition heading into 2024, the top of the conference may be as tight as it has been in years.

Early MAC football power rankings:


The reigning MAC Champions, Miami, will be many experts’ pick to repeat and there should be no surprise as to why. The Redhawks’ quarterback, Brett Gabbert is poised to make a return from injury in 2024 after an incredibly strong start to his 2023 season. The Redhawks also keep two of their three leading receivers and their top two leading tacklers from a MAC championship-winning side. Although Miami lost its leading rusher and receiver to the portal, the team picked up former Purdue running back Dylan Downing from the transfer portal.


Despite the departure of star quarterback, Dequan Finn, Toledo’s immediate future is not as bleak as some may think. The Rockets return their top three receivers and their leading rusher from 2022, Jacquez Stuart. The Rockets’ all-MAC safety Maxen Hook, who finished third on his team in tackles and also accumulated three interceptions, will be an early candidate for MAC Preseason Player of the Year. The Rockets have been the MAC’s most successful regular season team for the last two years and will be a tough team to take down in the MAC’s west division.

Northern Illinois

The Huskies have plenty of reasons for optimism in 2024 after a winning season in

2023. Although the Huskies can be without former starting quarterback Rocky Lombardi, the team didn’t pass the ball much anyway. Northern Illinois’ star running back Antario Brown ran for nearly 1,300 yards in 2023 and is a strong preseason candidate for MAC Offensive Player of the Year. The Huskies also bring back their top two leading receivers. Rashein Thomas and Jaden Dolphin return as the two leading tacklers from 2023. The Huskies’ defense allowed just under 22 points per game and is poised for another strong season.

Bowling Green

Harold Fannin Jr. and Terion Stewart could make for an impressive offensive duo along with returning quarterback Conor Bazelak. Stewart, the Falcons’ leading rusher from 2023 and Fannin Jr., the Falcons’ leading receiver were both All-MAC players in 2023 and have a strong chance to make the Falcons’ offense one of the best in the MAC in 2024.


The Bobcats were decimated by the transfer portal after the 2023 season. Losing key contributors like Kurtis Rourke, Miles Cross, Sieh Bangura, Will Kacmerak and Keye Thompson to the transfer portal, Ohio will have to turn to some of its younger players to step up to compete for a MAC title. Ohio recently lost its former defensive coordinator, Spence Nowinsky, to Memphis, but its defense should still be able to make the team above average in the MAC. Offensively, the Bobcats will be led by CJ Harris or Parker Navarro at quarterback and most likely standout running back Rickey Hunt.



Ohio running back Sieh Bangura, 5, is lifted by offensive lineman, Christophe Atkinson, 66, after his touchdown against Kent State in Athens, Oct. 7, 2023.

12 / APRIL 11, 2024

Ohio looks to snap 8-game losing streak this weekend

Meet the Opponent

Head Coach: Robbie Britt (first season)

Ohio (8-20 overall, 4-11 Mid-American Conference) travels to Ypsilanti, Michigan, to face Eastern Michigan (12-19 overall, 7-5 MAC) in a three-game series. Ohio has struggled in the past weeks, losing eight straight and only winning one of its last 12 games. Ohio looks to turn things around this weekend in a tough series against a formidable Eastern Michigan team.

Game Information

Opponent: Eastern Michigan

Location: Oestrike Stadium (Ypsilanti, Michigan)

Time: Saturday at noon, Saturday at 3:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m.

Follow live stats at statbroadcast.com.

Statistical Leaders

Batting Average: Blake McRae (.364)

RBI: Cory Taylor (31)

Home Runs: Taylor, Kyle Schroedle (7)

ERA: Nick Chittum (5.40)

Strikeouts: Bobby Jones (45)


Ohio is leading in the all-time series between the two teams, winning 28 and losing 22. In those 28 matchups, Ohio has scored, on average, 11 runs a game. Ohio has been even more favorable in the last 10 matchups, winning nine of the last 10.

However, on the road against Eastern Michigan, the series is tied at 11 wins each. Ohio could take the lead in the road record

this weekend with a good performance.

Eastern Michigan Notes

Eastern Michigan is coming off a rough couple of games, losing five of its last seven. In those games, the team gave up an average of 13 runs. In the MAC, though, they sit in the middle of the conference at No. 5, five spots above Ohio, which sits at No. 10 in the conference.

Four of its players are hitting above .300, all of which have over 20 RBIs. If Ohio wants to have a good performance this weekend, it must take advantage of Eastern Michigan’s pitching staff and silence its excellent offense.

Player to Watch: Dillon Masters Masters started the season coming out of the bullpen, not starting his first game until March 8 against Northern Illinois. Since his first start on the mound, he has been the most reliable starter for the Bobcats, posting a 4.17 ERA as a starter, lower than his overall

ERA of 4.79. On top of having the best ERA on the team, he also boasts the best opponent batting average with a .288. Masters is sure to take the mound this weekend and looks to continue his stretch of good starts.

Ohio is close to putting it together despite losing streak

After the final out during Tuesday night’s nonconference matchup with Northern Kentucky, the scoreboard read 11-8 in favor of the Norse. Ohio had just lost its eighth straight game, and body language and energy from the Ohio dugout seemed to be at an all-time low.

No one expected or wanted Ohio to be at the point it’s at this season, having tallied eight straight losses, being most likely out of MAC contention, and sporting an overall sour mood.

Despite all of these struggles, Ohio still has the pieces to put it together and save its season.

Time and time again, it has been one aspect of the game that costs Ohio a victory in the end. In the first half of the year, it was typically the starting pitching that was unable to get the job done and give the offense a chance to take the lead.

However, in some games, the starting pitcher will give the Bobcats a productive outing, keeping the game in the distance for the offense to take the lead. When that has happened, the bats have gone cold, and the relievers that came into the game would eventually give up a string of hits or a home run that would blow the game open and take

Ohio out of contention.

Tuesday, it was the defense that gave way for Northern Kentucky to take a commanding lead. After starting pitcher Landon Price gave Ohio three solid innings of action, the offense was able to come through with 2 runs in the first three innings, tying the game at 2 apiece going into the fourth inning.

Price was pulled in favor of Ethan Stewart, a freshman pitcher who then made his first appearance in a game for Ohio. Stewart had a decent outing despite only being on the bump for one inning of the game. In Stewart’s inning of action 6 runs were scored, yet none of those 6 runs were earned, with defensive errors costing Ohio big time.

“We had a play we didn’t make,” said Ohio Head Coach Craig Moore. “It led to instead of just 1 run that inning it led to 5 more runs after that and a six spot.”

An error from second baseman Alex Finney on a groundball easily could have been a double play, instead the inning went on and another costly error from left fielder AJ Rausch allowed more runs to score.

“If we make a play behind (Ethan Stewart) he probably just gives up 1 run that inning instead of the six spot,” Moore said.

Those 5 preventable runs turned out to be the game's turning point. Ohio’s offense was solid on Tuesday, scoring 8 runs and actually outhitting Northern Kentucky. The

lineup is dangerous, and every spot can provide Ohio with some juice off the bat, Nick Dolan for example, started the scoring for Ohio with a 2-run home run that soared over the left-field wall.

Every player who had three at-bats or more on Tuesday recorded a hit as well, showing the versatility of the Ohio lineup.

The Bobcats seem to have just been off in certain areas of the game when others are on, and if they can find a little bit of consistency, the eight-game losing streak will be snapped soon.

Ohio right hand pitcher, Tim Knapschaefer (31), during a game against Central Michigan at Bob Wren Stadium, March 23, 2024, in Athens. (ABBIE KINNEY | ART DIRECTOR) Trenton Neuer (33) hits the ball at the game against Northern Kentucky, April 9, 2024, at Bob Wren Stadium in Athens. (MEGAN VANVLACK | FOR THE POST)

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Ohio’s persistence fuels win streak

Note: The following column was written prior to Wednesday evening’s non-conference loss.

Walk-In & Virtual Care

• Minor illness/urgent care needs ranging from cold and flu to STD testing

• Primary Care

• Physicals


• Immunizations

• Women’s Health Services

• Onsite Lab Testing and Screenings

A 1-6 start to Mid-American Conference play was far from what Ohio (20-18, 8-6 MAC) wanted. Quite frankly, that is probably the worst thing that could have happened. Teams talk all the time about playing with consistency and vigor throughout the season. As the calendar turned to March, Ohio embarked on a stretch that saw it go 5-13 in March. That number might look a little better considering the pair of wins Ohio picked up in the final two games of the month. So how does a team that looked dead in the water arrive at this point in the season with everything in front of it?

The obvious answer to that would be winning. Ohio used the final two games against Central Michigan to close out the month on a two-game winning streak. Since then, Ohio has stretched that streak to a season-high seven games.

The formula for Ohio has been figuring out how to win games late. Ohio has outscored its opponents 26-8 from the fourth inning on during this streak. Breakout stars Shelby Westler and Yasmine Logan have anchored the middle of the lineup, assisted by catcher Emma Hoffner. Each of them has taken turns as the marquee hitter on a given day for Ohio. Skipp Miller and Mikie Lieving have dominated in the circle, allowing there to be more room for error at the plate and for Ohio Head Coach Jenna Hall to allow her team to become more aggressive on the bases.

moving to second place in the conference.

One area where Ohio has the advantage over nearly all of its conference foes is in the circle. The reigning freshman pitcher of the year, Miller has been able to find her peak form again this season. Miller is joined by Lieving in the rotation as the latter makes a push for the same award that was given to Miller a season ago. Miller and Lieving employ a similar strategy of allowing the batters to put the ball in play. This is a strategy that has worked in recent weeks as Ohio’s defense has been rather crisp. When the two pitchers are on point, there may not be a better one-two punch in the conference.

One thing that has been seen at all levels of play is that good pitching beats good hitting. The adage “hitting wins games, but pitching wins championships” is something Ohio hopes rings true this spring as it attempts to unseat its bitter rival as conference champs.

This is not to say that Ohio is bound to meet Miami in the MAC Tournament and pull off a magical Cinderella-esque run to capture conference supremacy from its rivals. Maybe it does happen, but the fact is that Ohio has positioned itself very well to actually compete for the conference crown. Out of any team in the MAC, Ohio boasts the best shot at unseating Miami as the champion. Between the level of experience and the quality of play recently, Ohio matches up with Miami far better than when the teams matched up a few weeks ago.


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• Athens, Ohio

The way Ohio is playing, there is no doubt that it is capable of winning the MAC in a typical season. However, this season, Miami (29-6, 11-0 MAC) has ruled the conference. Miami’s dominant season rolls on with it continuing a 16-game win streak and 11-0 start to MAC play. Ohio was swept by its biggest rival in the most recent edition of The Battle of the Bricks in Oxford. Miami has an offense that rivals any in the country, as it has hit 68 more home runs than the next team in the conference rankings with 101 home runs. Simply put, Miami is an offensive juggernaut and a force to be reckoned with this season.


• www.holzer.org/uptown

That being said, games are not played on paper or with statistics. Ohio and Miami look poised to meet again this season in the MAC Tournament. It feels rather unlikely that, given its current pace, Miami will lose more than six of its final 16 MAC games. Ohio does not need to compete with Miami in the standings. It needs to compete with the two teams ahead of it in the standings, Toledo (18-14, 9-3 MAC) and Akron (17-20, 7-5 MAC). Those two teams are on the radar for Ohio, granting it a great chance at


14 / APRIL 11, 2024
Ohio infielder Sydney Grein (33) throws the ball to a teammate during the Bobcats’ game against Northern Illinois at Ohio Softball Field in Athens, April 7, 2024. (ETHAN HERX | FOR THE POST)

Clips of the eclipse

In order top to bottom, starting with the left column:

1. The sky darkens as the moon covers the sun during the totality of the solar eclipse in Delaware County, Ohio, April 8, 2024. (BECKETT STARK | FOR THE POST)

2. A person uses their solar eclipse glasses to take a picture of the eclipse on their phone during peak viewing at Paw Print Park, Ohio University, Athens, April 8, 2024. (TALITHA MALOY | FOR THE POST)

3. A photo illustration of the solar eclipse from Findlay, Ohio, April 8, 2024. (JACK TATHAM | FOR THE POST)

4. The North American Solar Eclipse at Blues Creek Park in Delaware, Ohio, April 8, 2023. Blues Creek Park was in totality for about two and a half minutes. (ZOE CRANFILL | PHOTO EDITOR)

5. Ohio University students watch the Solar Eclipse in Paw Print Park, Ohio University, April 8, 2024. (TALITHA MALOY | FOR THE POST)


Athens needs a European-style techno club

Although Athens is lauded as a “party school” with a strong bar culture, the town pales in comparison to the party scene in Germany. I’ve spent the last month living in Leipzig, a city with an abundance of bars similar to those on Court Street and any other college town in the U.S. However, Germany also contains a type of nightlife not seen in Athens: techno clubs. Bringing the techno scene to Athens would introduce a rich global history, diversify the going-out culture and bring big-city energy to a small town.

In Germany, the iconic techno scene was established during the Cold War when the country was divided into West Germany, controlled by the Western allies of World

War II, and Soviet-controlled East Germany.

According to NPR, the strict curfews on nightlife in both areas of the country caused a hotelier named Heinz Zellermayer to make a case to the commander of the American sector of West Berlin. Zellermayer argued that getting rid of the curfew would help the economy and boost the morale of the disgruntled citizens. West German leaders voted to get rid of curfews in 1949, which was adopted by East Germany after the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Since then, the techno scene has exploded in Berlin and cities beyond, including the nearby city of Leipzig. Clubs stay open until the early hours of the morning and offer a place of escape for many city dwellers.

For example, a club in Leipzig called Institut Für Zukunft (Institute for the Future) is just one of the many clubs that don’t allow cellphone cameras within the walls of the dance hall. Clubgoers are free to let loose without fear of being recorded and can stay disconnected from the outside world. Clubs are dark and engulfed in powerful dance music, and with no fear of being judged by social media or other clubbers, the environment is positive and free of toxicity.

While Berlin is often praised as the origin of the techno scene, the real dawn of techno clubs occurred not too far from Athens

in Detroit. According to The New Yorker, American techno began as a combination of disco and funk. Those genres were then electronically altered by Chicago-based DJs like Frankie Knuckles to create house music. This new genre of music spread from Chicago to Detroit, and then back again with new alterations, proving the inter-city connection of music is infinitely possible.

Introducing the techno scene in Athens would provide another option for those who don’t like the energy of most bars in town. Those who don’t like trying to dance to rap music and would rather go to an EDM club, where the music is designed to be danced to, would love a European-style techno club. Having a club that stays open past the usual closing time of 2 a.m. would be economically good for the town and would give the small town more of a big-city feel.

Although Exron Music cites many places in Europe on their list of the top 10 electronic music cities in the world, half of the cities on the list are located in the U.S., including Chicago, New York City, Las Vegas, Los Angeles and Miami. All but the last city on that list are in the top 25 largest cities in America, and all of them are world-renowned for their parties and going-out culture. The popularity of electronic music festivals and techno clubs in those cities is a large part of that

appeal, and bringing similar outlets of celebration to Athens would give the town the energy of a large city.

The techno clubs I’ve been to are much more accessible to a wider range of people. There’s less pressure to be intoxicated and a larger focus on dancing. The music is often too loud to hear people speaking, but there are spaces throughout the building to sit and talk. The techno scene has an expansive history, some of which began just one state over from Ohio, and bringing that history to Athens would diversify the town’s party culture and bring a slice of big-city life to OU students.

Sophia Rooksberry is a sophomore studying journalism. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnists do not reflect those of The Post. Want to talk more about it? Let Sophia know by tweeting her @sophiarooks_.

Beyoncé’s country debut stands unbound

Art, unlike anything else, is far too subjective and personal to consistently categorize. Music, like any art form, has the power to transcend political, cultural and social divides.

It feels like an obvious sentiment, but the backlash to Beyoncé’s long-awaited country debut directly contradicts this.

The country music scene, on the surface level, has a seemingly specific demographic. Its deep roots and soft-spoken vastness have the power to eliminate this stereotype; if only it wasn’t so buried.

Beyoncé’s strong and successful efforts

to retrieve country’s roots and create the nonconfining “Cowboy Carter” as Act 2 of her three-act project are simply mind blowing. With humility and grace, this album responds to those arguing she doesn’t belong in country.

Her 2016 CMA Awards performance triggered negative and racist responses from said stereotypical listeners. But, this isn’t a revenge album. She’s taking back what is inherently hers. Among others, there is one lesson to be learned here: there are more creative and holistic ways to express grievances with the music industry than a diss track.

It’s not that I don’t enjoy country music, but time and place are important. However, “Cowboy Carter” not only deserves to be uplifted in the country genre, but its nonconfining nature leaves it to be celebrated in all music scenes.

In full transparency, my inspiration for this column came from Brittany Broski’s podcast episode: “EVERYONE SHUT UP COWBOY CARTER IS OUT,” which captures my message in one short, justifiably aggressive sentence.

In natural Virgo – and queen – tendencies, this album is full of intentional and

strategic moves. The choice to make every “I” read “II” to symbolize the second of the three-album project went right over my head at first. Then, I remembered Beyoncé is pure genius. My personal favorite was the decision to title the album “Cowboy Carter” instead of “Cowgirl Carter.” This was a powerful move to stray away from the sexualized, immature and unserious connotations that the word “cowgirl” holds – because that’s not what this is.

These are the most vulnerable lyrics we’ve gotten from Beyoncé. She draws from rock, pop and folk genres to touch on her personal values and stories, her relationship with Jay-Z and those that came before her.

Collaborations with legends like Dolly Parton, Willie Nelson and Linda Martell and her rerecordings speak to her desire to be in touch with her roots as it pertains to her personal life and her music.

I’m currently in a yoga phase, and, of course, being mildly intolerable about it. However, I went to a class this weekend that was Cowboy Carter-themed. If a group of 20 strangers can gather in an unbearably hot room and enjoy only one album for the entire hour, it should win every award there is – not that she’ll need any help with that.

I’ll let Brittany Broski take over again. In the episode, she says, “Asking Beyoncé to pick a genre is like asking a rainbow to pick a color.” At first, I laughed. Seconds later, I realized she’s never been more correct. The most powerful artist of our generation can’t be contained in simple categories. Enjoy it for all that it is.

But, Beyoncé herself said it best: “This ain’t a Country album. This is a Beyoncé album.”

She’s done it, once again.

Layne Rey is a sophomore studying journalism at Ohio University. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnist do not reflect those of The Post. What are your thoughts? Let Layne know by tweeting her @ laynerey12.

16 / APRIL 11, 2024
Layne Rey Sophia Rooksberry

Sustainable lifestyles make smarter consumers

When I hear the word “sustainability” I associate it with things like the environment, businesses, materials, repurposing and health. That is because sustainability has become an incredibly popular term in the environmental science world and business world. Most large corporations have some kind of sustainability or environmental commitment page on their websites because they understand sustainability is an important consideration for consumers. But as much as we might associate the

word itself and practice of sustainability with the environment, sustainability is just as beneficial for people. Since becoming mindful about my impact on the planet, I have become more connected to the purchasing process and a smarter consumer.

Shortly over two years ago, I decided to keep sustainability in the forefront of my mind in all aspects of my life. I started thinking about how much plastic I throw away in a day, the materials in my clothes, where I buy my products from and where the products are actually produced. In doing so, I have made positive lifestyle changes.

So far, the biggest change I have made in trying to be more sustainable is how and where I purchase clothes. I have always loved fashion and dressing in ways that make me feel creative and confident. In high school and even the beginning of college, I felt pressured to keep up with rapidly changing fashion trends. That meant shopping mostly at fast-fashion retailers, who are largely responsible for the 20% of global waste water generated by the fashion industry.

But I realized it’s impossible to keep up with those trends. Instead, I only buy new clothes that I absolutely need and I buy pieces that I know will last a long time. For ex-

ample, I just bought business-professional clothes for an upcoming internship, and I will use those pieces throughout my entire professional career.

Otherwise, I try to shop second-hand at thrift stores and garage sales. Not only am I repurposing clothes, but I have fun doing it. And I have found my favorite pieces from second-hand shopping. I still feel creative in what I wear, but now I also feel content knowing I have reused materials.

I have also changed the types of products I buy based on the waste it generates. For example, I swapped my makeup wipes for micellar water and reusable cloth “rags.” And for the products I know will inevitably come in plastic, I buy in bulk like my detergent and my shampoo (I have not made the jump to bar shampoo yet, but I encourage you to check it out).

And overall, I have saved money because I am buying less and repurposing where I can. I used to get drive-thru coffees in disposable cups every morning. Now, I mostly make my coffee at home, and when I do decide I want one, I try to support local coffee shops, especially those with sustainably sourced coffee beans such as Donkey Coffee or Court Street Coffee.

And in trying to live sustainably, I have connected with the Athens community more. I have bought delicious produce from the Athens Farmers Market, walked the beautiful bike path countless times and shopped locally at stores like Kindred Market.

People often point out that it is large corporations that must be responsible for making their products more sustainable. That is true, corporations do need to hold themselves accountable, but we are responsible for the products we choose to buy. Both producers and consumers must recognize that their actions have an impact.

The changes I have made make me feel fulfilled. Buying products used to feel like a thoughtless process, but now I feel far more connected to what I buy and why I’m buying it. I will continue looking for ways I can improve my consumption habits, not just for the planet, but for me too.

Taylor Henninger is a junior studying journalism at Ohio University. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnist do not reflect those of The Post. Do you agree?

Tell Taylor by emailing her at th873120@ohio. edu.

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Police wrongfully kill Dexter Reed

March 21, four tactical-unit police officers shot and killed Dexter Reed, a 26-yearold Black man, at a traffic stop in Chicago. The officers fired a total of 96 shots in 41 seconds at Reed after pulling him over in an unmarked police car. They allegedly pulled him over for not wearing his seatbelt; however, the bodycam footage released April 10 shows that Reed’s car has tinted windows, and investigators are questioning how police could have noticed. The officers can be heard repeatedly telling Reed to roll down his windows and unlock his car doors. Reed did not comply with their commands.

Preliminary evidence has suggested Reed may have fired the first shot, wounding one officer, which then led to the other four’s retaliation. However, the Reed family’s attorney said officers did not announce they were police. The five individuals were also wearing plain clothes and thus were not easily identifiable as police officers. While this in no way justifies firing a weapon, it also does not justify the officers’ response.

Regardless of whether Reed shot first at the officers, shooting a person 96 times, in any context, is unacceptable. Even worse, the officers continued to shoot Reed after he was lying on the ground, having already been shot multiple times.

Police are trained to use force as a last resort, only in situations when it is necessary to protect themselves and others from imminent danger. There is no danger in a motionless, wounded person. The sheer number of shots fired and the rapidity of them, in addition to the continued fire after Reed was already down, is a clear abuse of power.

Within 41 seconds, four officers fired nearly 100 shots at Reed, with one of the officers firing at least 50 times. There is no situation in which that would be necessary, and there is no excuse for the way the police officers handled this one.

Police shootings are no doubt high-stress situations that can elicit poor judgment. However, police are not regular people, and they have a responsibility to stay calm in situations like those and act accordingly. The handling of this situation is inexcusable.

It is also important to note that Black people are disproportionately affected by police brutality in the United States. They account for 22% of fatal police shootings, even though only 13.4% of the population is Black. In fact, in the U.S., Black people are more than three times more likely to be killed by police than white people.

The Black Lives Matter movement began in 2012 after 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was murdered by neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman. Since

then, there has been a public onslaught of protests condemning police brutality, yet little seems to have changed.

The officers’ use of excessive force on Reed has cost yet another innocent life. Another mother now mourns her child because of the recklessness of those officers. Reed’s death is unjustifiable, and there should be consequences for the officers responsible.

It is, of course, wrong to shoot at police officers. But when five armed individuals — who are wearing plain clothes and thus are not easily identifiable as police officers — suddenly surround someone, that could certainly elicit a sense of endangerment.

Editorials represent the majority opinion of The Post’s executive editors: Editor-in-Chief Katie Millard, Managing Editor Emma Erion and Equity Director Alesha Davis. Post editorials are independent of the publication’s news coverage.

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18 / APRIL 11, 2024 Editor-in-Chief | Katie Millard Managing Editor | Emma Erion Equity Director | Alesha Davis EDITORIAL News Editor | Madalyn Blair Asst. News Editor | Donovan Hunt Culture Editor | Alyssa Cruz Asst. Culture Editor | Abby Jenkins Sports Editor | Bobby Gorbett Sports Editor | Robert Keegan III Opinion Editor | Tate Raub Asst. Opinion Editor | Meg Diehl The Beat Editor | Aya Cathey Asst. The Beat Editor | Grace Koennecke Projects Editor | Hannah Campbell Investigative Editor | Alex Imwalle Copy Chief | Addie Hedges Slot Editors | Arielle Lyons, Jackson McCoy, Ashley Pomplas, Tre Spencer ART Art Director | Abbie Kinney Asst. Art Director | Emma McAdams Director of Photography | Alaina Dackermann Photo Editor | Zoe Cranfill DIGITAL Director of Web Development | Tavier Leslie Audience Engagement Editor | Logan Jefferies Asst. Audience Engagement Editor | Jenna Skidmore Director of Multimedia | Cole Patterson Asst. Director of Multimedia | Kendall Timms BUSINESS Media Sales | Gia Sammons, Molly Wilson Director of Student Media | Andrea Lewis ONLINE thepostathens.com FACEBOOK thepostathens TWITTER @ThePost INSTAGRAM @thepostathens Volume 114, Issue 28 Advertisement Policies The Post will not print advertising that violates local, state or federal laws. The Post will not run advertisements that violate the Fair Housing Act, or the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission policies. The Post reserves the right to reject advertising deemed to adversely affect the integrity and credibility of the publication or be in conflict with the educational mission of the university or community it serves. The Post retains the right, at its discretion, to approve or reject an advertisement that negatively affects the relationship with our readers or that promotes content, services, or activities that violate our advertising policy. If an error occurs, and an advertisement is published not as ordered, please notify The Post by the end of the business day following publication, a corrected advertisement will run without charge in the next print edition. Cancellation requests for advertising must be received and acknowledged by staff no later than 2:00 pm on Wednesday for the Thursday print edition. Refunds will not be given for ads that have
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YouTube evolves throughout years of internet drama

The 2010s marked YouTube’s golden age with a height of innovative content and the creation of a global community. However, the past decade has been overwhelmed by scandals and foundational changes which have caused many to leave the platform behind.

YouTube’s controversies highlighted a problem in the system

In 2017, YouTuber Felix Kjellberg, known as PewDiePie on the platform, became the center of shocking controversies surrounding hate speech and imagery that would lead to a complete change of the platform.

The Wall Street Journal exposed Pewdiepie for paying two men to hold up a sign saying “Death to all Jews” on a live stream on his platform, causing him to lose his partnership with Disney’s subsidiary, Maker Studios.

Business Insider reached out to Maker Studios for comment, and a spokeswoman for the company said while Kjellberg’s content is generally provocative, “he clearly went too far in this case and the resulting videos are inappropriate. Maker Studios has made the decision to end our affiliation with him going forward.”

Pewdiepie was also dropped from YouTube’s preferred advertising platform, which serves as a direct way for advertisers to contact YouTube’s top creators. The site also canceled Season 2 of “Scare PewDiePie,” a reality show it had sponsored starring PewDiePie.

This sounded an alarm toward the content allowed on YouTube. Advertisers discovered in March of 2017 that their ads were placed over videos containing Neo-Nazi and ISIS propaganda. By May of 2017 YouTube lost 5% of its top advertisers, resulting in millions of dollars in revenue loss.

YouTuber Logan Paul was also under fire at the end of 2017 and beginning of 2018 for recording and uploading a video of a deceased man in the Aokigahara forest in Japan. YouTube lived under a microscope for the next year, imposing new protocols that killed

popular channels and led to many creators leaving the platform for bigger things.

The “Adpocalypse” and the YouTuber Exodus

In a video for the “Vlogbrothers” channel, online educator and science commentator Hank Green gave a rundown of YouTube’s ad system. YouTube depends on ads for money. To build their credibility, YouTube began implementing a stricter flagging system.

This flagging system categorized content into two categories: child-friendly and anything that may be deemed “Not Advertiser-Friendly.” Due to content not being necessarily family-friendly, many channels began to see their content restricted, with fewer ad placements and a lack of promotion on YouTube’s platform.

This then caused YouTubers — many of whom were using YouTube as a main source of income — to have to leave the platform for other work or turn to crowdfunding opportunities.

Popular YouTuber Liza Koshy left the platform in 2018 to focus on other opportunities outside of YouTube content creation. She has since gone on to have many acting gigs, including a role in “Transformers: Rise of the Beasts,” creating her show, “Liza On Demand,” and becoming the first creator to host the Met Gala red carpet.

Well known creator Lilly Singh graduated from her status as a YouTuber and became the first queer woman of color to host a latenight talk show.

Emma Chamberlain has become one of the biggest influencers in the world just seven years after she started vlogging on YouTube at age 15. She owns her own coffee company and hosted interviews on the Met Gala red carpet.

Another side of the exodus of YouTubers was a new biased censorship created by its new flagging system.

Before leaving YouTube and the public eye in 2020 after 13 years on the platform, Tyler Oakley became the face of a long list of LGBTQIA+ creators whose content was unfairly restricted by YouTube.

The Current State of YouTube

Many blame the “Adpocalypse” for “killing” YouTube. The stricter flagging system started flagging content that was deemed unsuitable for children. However, as was the case with Oakley and many other LGBTQIA+ creators, even educational content on LGBTQIA+ figures was taken down.

This was exacerbated by the introduction of the “strike” system, which gave channels three strikes for inappropriate content, after which their channels would be removed from the platform. First strikes are typically warnings, and can expire after 90 days if a creator undergoes policy training through Google. However, if content is deemed in violation of the same policy within that window, the channel still receives a strike.

Many creators in marginalized communities have seen unfair flagging and restrictions on their content. This is an issue that has persisted to the 2020s.

In 2022, CoryxKenshin, a Black YouTuber active on the platform since 2009, called out the platform for its biased censorship and limiting of content.

"Mortuary's Assistant," a popular horror game in the gaming community, was played and shared by Cory and others. Only Cory's video among all those released about the game was age-restricted afterward.

Cory appealed the restriction, which YouTube rejected. His YouTube representative reached out to YouTube after Cory pointed out that Markiplier, a major non-Black creator, had no age restriction on his video despite posting the same clip. Only then did YouTube remove Cory’s age restriction.

He reached out further through his YouTube representative with questions, sparked by the situation and previous feelings of mistreatment. In response, YouTube reinstated the age restriction for Cory's video and added one to Markiplier’s.

the following year when Cory’s video resurfaced after creator SSSniperwolf doxxed creator Jackfilms on her Instagram story. Doxxing refers to publishing private identifying information publicly.

SSSniperwolf then showed up to the creator's home in the middle of the night and took a video of the house, captioning it, “Let's talk like adults.” This incident is a major violation of YouTube’s “Harassment and Cyber Bullying policy” but only resulted in the temporary demonetization of SSSniperwolf’s channel a week later.

YouTube also denounced behavior on both sides of the incident. YouTuber MoistCr1tikal called out YouTube for its “special treatment” of SSSniperwolf and its lack of a timely response to her infraction of YouTube’s policy.

YouTube’s alleged favoritism, bias, limiting of ad placements and unfair flagging have caused many to leave the platform. Recently, major longstanding creators MatPat, CaptainSparklez and Tom Scott announced their retirement from YouTube to venture into other opportunities.

Others are switching to other platforms like Twitch and Kick.

There is a new generation of YouTubers bringing life to the dying platform, however. Supernatural investigators Sam and Colby have sparked attention over their discoveries about the afterlife.

MrBeast is currently the biggest YouTuber on the platform, known for his charities, special game events and his restaurant chain “MrBeast Burger.” AMP is also capturing the world’s attention, averaging 1-4 million views every video.

YouTube has served as a platform for pioneering entertainment and collaboration, shaping a global community of shared memories. YouTube’s golden age is long behind us; however, the hope of a renaissance of creative freedom may still be in the platform's future.

Other major YouTubers like Jacksepticeye and Markiplier defended Cory and echoed his statements about favoritism on the platform.

This highlighted YouTube’s favoritism in

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Vintage clothing is back in style

Social media may be harmful in many ways, but it has helped society revive many old fashion trends. One trend is vintage clothing, which is coming back due to the pandemic, social media and a resurgence of trying to be environmentally friendly.

Fast fashion was created so individuals can always have a new look for cheap, but many consumers realized they needed to consider the longevity of clothing. Influencers like Sarah Jane Adams, Katie Zamprioli and Rachel Maksy helped to pioneer the movement. Each influencer has an eye for vintage clothing and can embody it uniquely.

Even though the trend reemerged during the pandemic, people wearing older clothing has always been a fashion choice. Every decade has vintage items, and some people wear clothes from the one before. If something is in good condition, why get rid of it?

Vintage clothing and thrifting are good for the environment and sustainability. Fast fashion and clothes made quickly leads to more clothing ending up in landfills. By thrifting, consumers are reusing clothing so it does not go to waste, and they are not directly supporting the companies contributing to world pollution.

Thrifting also lowers carbon dioxide emissions. If every person bought one clothing item secondhand, it would lower CO2 emissions by 2 billion pounds, which equals 76 million cars starting for the day. In addition to lowering carbon dioxide emissions, it also lowers water usage by 23 billion gallons and energy by 4 billion kilowatt-hours.

Not only is it good for the environment, but used clothing is typically cheaper than newly released clothing. It is also much easier for busy people or parents to go out and buy multiple styles and seasons of clothing at once. They have to sift through bad clothing until they find the kind they are shopping for, but if they do it all at once, then their shopping will be complete for a very long time.

The term “vintage” is broad. Current clothing styles deemed as “vintage” are pieces from the ‘80s, such as ripped jeans, combat boots and baggy, graphic band tees. “Vintage” actually expands further, referring to anything from the ‘20s, ‘30s, and up to the 2000s. If a piece is older than 100 years old, then it is considered an antique.

People are looking to new sources to find these articles of clothing and accessories. While some are trying to find the vintage look in boutiques and chain stores, many know buying old clothing is a true way to find old clothing.

old clothing may not be as perfect as one might imagine. Before purchasing any used vintage clothing, buyers should make sure the pieces are not tampered with or damaged.

A commonly found thrift store is Goodwill. Multiple stores with clothing for less than $5 also exist in Athens, including NewTo-You Thrift Shoppe, UpCycle Ohio and Little Wing.

It may seem exciting to jump into a vintage look, however, there are some things people need to look out for. Buying people’s

Thrifting is when people go into garage sales, thrift shops, yard sales or other used clothing sales to collect a few vintage gems. In addition to garage and yard sales, some stores specifically sell old clothing, accessories or furniture.

Thrifting is not the only way to get into vintage clothing. Since the trend has picked up, chain clothing companies have been putting out older-looking clothing for people to buy new. Brands that have been doing this include Nike, Adidas, Reebok, Tommy Hilfiger and Champion. These companies are also introducing more vintage styles through

older patterns, cuts and colors.

Not everyone likes vintage clothing, but people who do are benefiting the environment and their bank accounts. While some may find the vintage look “old,” others see it as valuable.

The truth is, dressing up for “decades” parties may no longer be a historical theme. It is just another fashion style.

20 / APRIL 11, 2024

Discussing celebrity health, appearance crosses boundaries

While social media offers a platform for self-expression, communication and community, it often presents an idealized version of reality rather than a realistic representation of everyday life. It is easy for users to compare themselves to others, even if most social media posts are inaccurate portrayals of a person’s “normal” life.

Social media users, especially celebrities, often curate their images on many sites and apps to be the best version of themselves. Many social media platforms have tools for editing and filtering photos and videos. Celebrities and other users may use these features to enhance their appearance or manipulate their content.

Between the rise of plastic surgery and the photo editing app Facetune, celebrities often knowingly or unknowingly create unrealistic standards that their followers compare themselves to. Many users have developed a fixation on looks, often commenting on a public figure’s appearance because their lives are so easily accessible via social media.

Commenting on a celebrity's appearance may cross boundaries, particularly if the comments are disrespectful, invasive or judgmental. While it may seem harmless to some, these comments can be hurtful, contribute to body shaming and perpetuate unrealistic beauty standards.

Comments about celebrities' weight, particularly for women, are often riddled with criticism of their bodies and weight.

For example, pop singer Lizzo is constantly criticized for her weight. Lizzo is known for being a “plus-sized icon,” as she is one of the music industry’s few representations of this body type. While she is often praised for her body positivity, she continues to be body-shamed on the internet.

Twitter user Laya Heilpern said, “How is Lizzo still THIS fat when she’s constantly moving this much on stage?! I wonder what she must be eating.”

Although she usually ignores these comments, Lizzo clapped back with a reply on Twitter.

“I JUST logged on and the app and this is the type of s— I see about me on a daily basis,” Lizzo said.

On the opposite side of the spectrum, celebrities like Ariana Grande, Bella Hadid and Kendall Jenner are often criticized for being “too skinny.” Ultimately, some internet users comment on celebrities’ bodies no matter what size they are.

A change in a celebrity’s appearance often makes the news, whether it is an alleged plastic surgery, weight loss or gain, or a new look or hairstyle. Sometimes this type of commentary can cross a line, especially when a public figure’s health is in question.

Recently, Kate Middleton has been in

the news after not being publicly seen for months because of abdominal surgery she underwent in January. After pictures issued by Kensington Palace featuring Middleton and her family appeared to be digitally altered, rumors surrounding her well-being flooded the internet.

Conspiracy theories took over social media. Some users thought she was missing, underwent other surgeries or died. Middleton eventually posted a video explaining she was battling cancer and wanted privacy while she came to terms with her diagnosis.

Another example of this type of intrusion into a celebrity's life is Scott Disick, who was recently in the news for his sudden weight loss. Pictures of Disick featured him looking frail and much thinner than usual, with sunglasses covering his face. The rumor mill

buzzed about Disick having an “Ozempic face” or being on drugs.

Actor Chadwick Boseman’s appearance was also once a topic of conversation. Boseman posted a video to Instagram, where he spoke about the #Operation42 social media initiative, and was noticeably thinner than usual. While some were generally concerned for his health, others made jokes and memes about his appearance.

Shortly after, Boseman’s family released a statement on Twitter stating the actor had died from colon cancer. After Boseman passed, a fan, Haley Ruth Spencer, made a Facebook post highlighting the ignorance of the Instagram post’s comments.

“I remember people taking it upon themselves to make jokes, tweets, memes, etc. about the change in his appearance,” Spen-

cer said. “They called him ‘crack panther.’ And now we all know he changed because he was dying of colon cancer. I saw all of this as a reminder to please not comment on people’s bodies, especially changes in their weight.”

Boseman’s death sparked some conversation about the public’s commentary on the appearances of public figures, but it barely made a difference. The public continues making comments about the appearance of celebrities like Middleton, Lizzo and Disick.

Social media users persist in casting judgment on celebrities’ bodies, regardless of the boundaries they are crossing.

22 / APRIL 11, 2024

Fashion, chemistry creates successful press tours

After analyzing cinema’s most successful films, they all have one thing in common: a successful press tour. According to Airfoil, a company that specializes in PR and marketing, a press tour involves a company spokesperson attending events for the sole purpose of participating in interviews with reporters, influencers and media.

However, what exactly makes a press tour successful? Is it a significant factor in a film’s broader success?

A deep dive into some of the most successful films of 2023 and 2024 provides some answers. For example, the highest-grossing movie of 2023, “Barbie”, grossed $1.4 billion worldwide following an extremely coordinated and appraised press tour.

The tour attracted attention specifically for the outfits of Margot Robbie, who played Barbie. After realizing Robbie’s looks were inspired by iconic Barbie dolls throughout history, fans were eager to see what look the star would sport next.

Throughout the tour, Robbie brought the film to life by becoming the embodiment of the iconic doll. In one pink carpet appearance, she wore a custom pink Vivienne Westwood dress identical to the one worn by the “Enchanted Evening” Barbie doll of 1960. In another, she wore her hair crimped while in a funky patterned Emilio Pucci dress to pay homage to the 1992 “Totally Hair” Barbie.

Perhaps the success of the tour is a result of its consistency even after the film’s release. The star shocked fans at this year’s Oscars when her final look for “Barbie” didn’t emulate one of the dolls. Instead of the usual pink, Robbie wore a simple black dress while her co-star, America Ferrera, took the spotlight in a shimmering pink dress.

The statement was a perfect way to end the film’s incredibly successful run as it resembled both actresses’ characters at the end of the movie. By the end of the film, Ferrera’s character encourages Robbie’s character to live life as a real woman instead of a doll and Ferrera is inspired by Barbie to embrace her femininity.

A movie of similar success, “Dune: Part One”(2021), grossed $431 million worldwide after a successful press tour centered around the fashion of stars Zendaya and Timothée Chalamet.

A wardrobe isn’t enough for a successful press tour, though. Rachel Zegler is a perfect example of why interviews and media training are just as important.

The face of Disney’s upcoming remake of “Snow White” revealed some controversial opinions about the princess’ original story, giving the movie’s press a rocky start.

After telling Variety that her version of Snow White dreamed about becoming a leader rather than finding true love because “it’s no longer 1937,” fans criticized her for being anti-feminist.

One TikTok user, @CosyWithAngie, criticized Zegler’s view of feminism.

“Criticizing Disney princesses is not feminist,” the user argued. “Not every woman is a leader. Not every woman wants to be a leader. Not every woman wants or craves power. And that’s OK.”

With the amount of negative press and criticism toward Zegler, the 2025 film seems to be doomed from the beginning.

Many modern press tours rely on the internet for interviews and positive discourse around the film. Lisa Wong Masabasco of Vogue argues press tour content is in its golden age and the internet has played a major role in that.

Along with appearances on late-night shows and coverage from traditional media publications, internet-based entertainment news has raised the bar for successful PR.

The cast of “Iron Claw” (2023), for example, participated in one of BuzzFeed’s famous puppy interviews. With the rise of influencers and celebrities on social media, audiences are increasingly interested in the personalities and lives of the actors.

Unconventional interviews such as this one bring out the actors’ personalities, especially when they are asked questions unrelated to their work, like guilty pleasures.

Another unique interview with BuzzFeed was a part of the “Wonka” (2023) press tour in which star Timothée Chalamet tried sweets from around the world. Not only does the interview fit into the theme of the movie, which is about a chocolate connoisseur, but it also gives the audience a glimpse into his personality.

Interviews don’t have to be unconventional for a successful press tour, though. Another press tour highlight Masabasco points out is from an interview with Vanity Fair as part of the “Poor Things” (2023) press tour with stars Emma Stone and Mark Ruffalo.

Although the interview consists of traditional questions surrounding the film, Stone and Ruffalo poke fun at their scenes and giggle through the interview, and their chemistry shows how important it is for actors to show off their friendships in press tours. For whatever reason, audiences want to believe that the characters they see on screen are friends in real life so interview moments like this are a great way to engage that audience.

Overall, given the examples given by the most successful movies of the last few years, a successful press tour that relies on the fashion, personalities and friendships showcased by the actors can significantly boost the success of the film.



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