Election day behind the scenes families >p. 5 reflect during national adoption month > p. 9
The Student Vote what do you think should be the main focus for the president? Education
4% 10% 10% 10%
14% Foreign Policy
We polled one hundred students to get their opinions on presidential issues. Here’s what they decided on. Source population 100 students Infographic by Madison Moss
Issue 3, Volume VII - Friday, November 14, 2008 Prince George High School’s Student Newspaper 7801 Laurel Spring Rd. Prince George, VA 23875 804-733-2720 - www.trnwired.com
WE JUST MADE PRESIDENTIAL HISTORY... NOW WHAT?
100 STUDENTS SHARE WHAT THEY THINK SHOULD BE THE PRESIDENT’S PRIORITY p. 13 Regardless of recession, students continue to attempt to find jobs during the holiday season p. 11
Page 2 -The Royal News - November 14, 2008
Policy keeps politics outside of school
veryone has his or her own perspective and philosophy. As Americans, we are entitled to our own opinions and freedom to express them according to the first amendment. However, restrictions are necessary to keep order and to protect the rights of others. In schools, by policy, teachers are not allowed to express their political view for obvious and moral reasons. In a recent article from the New York Times, Stanley Fish discussed the issues about high school and university teachers being prohibited from wearing political buttons, placing campaign stickers on their cars, and ultimately sharing their partisan identities. Politics is a sensitive topic especially since ideals and platforms of a party can be associated with someone’s beliefs and religion. Because of the separation of religion and state and the possible connection between political philosophy and religion, it corroborates the policy that does not allow teachers to express their political view. Also, people are passionate about their personal beliefs. If a student and a teacher have opposing beliefs, it is inevitable for these characters to clash and cause unnecessary friction. For example, there are valid arguments for pro-choice and the prohibition of abortion and debates can go on for hours. This can interfere with the learning atmosphere if there is tension in student-teacher relationship which can affect the class as a whole. Because teachers are very influential figures and their job is to educate, students may feel that their teachers’ beliefs in politics may seem forced on them. In a lesson a teacher may present information in a biased perspective, which can influence and affect the student’s own perspective. Students who want the approval of their teachers may just blindly agree with the teacher’s beliefs. This can also hinder students from doing their own research and forming their own beliefs. Someone who is not well-educated about both political parties, can be extremely impressionable. For the right of their students, and to protect their own reputation, teachers should not be allowed to openly express their political philosophy in the school.
letters theRoyalNews Smoking in school brings disgust from many Smoking on school property has and continues to be an issue. Whether one is walking through A-wing on their way to class, heading out to their car in the afternoon, or trying to enjoy a football game, the smell of cigarette smoke is an unwanted interruption. To those of us who wish to die of another cause, the unavoidable breathing of secondhand smoke is a nuisance. If a person is so inconsiderate that they cannot wait until they leave school grounds to smoke, something should be done about it. Considering that we have had a full-scale, personal search, this should no longer be a problem. Perhaps the penalty of smoking on school grounds should be heightened. Junior Molly Nicol
Teachers assume different roles during search I was against the way in which teachers had to take on the responsibility of searching the students in the recent school search. I believe the majority of teachers took their position extremely too seriously. They were taking things such as body spray, itch cream and gum. I can honestly say that I have no idea how gum can be used as a narcotic. Itch cream was personally confiscated from me; with the excuse that it can be used as an inhalant, within approximately one hour. I was simply given it back; so what was the point? The teachers should be properly informed in the future, in regards with exactly what to look for.
ur mission as the school newspaper for Prince George High School is to provide a form of media that represents all aspects of student life. The goal is to present factual accounts of newsworthy events in a timely manner. Our publication will be informative, entertaining and reflective of the student body’s opinions. It is the desire of the staff to reach every student and tell as many of their stories as possible. We invite your commentary: The Royal News Opinion page is a forum for public discussion and shall be open to all students. The Royal News will print as many letters as space will allow. The Royal News reserves the right not to print a letter. The Royal News publishes a wide variety of opinions. Send letters to: Letters to the Editor, The Royal News, PGHS, 7801 Laurel Spring Road, Prince George, Virginia 23875, or bring them to room A6, or e-mail them to firstname.lastname@example.org We reserve the right to edit for clarity, brevity, accuracy, legality, spelling and grammar. Please include your name, address and phone number. Anonymous letters will not be considered for publication. 500 word maximum. The next chance to submit letters will be for the December Issue. Thanks for all the letters.
Editor-in-Chief Chelsea Nave
Section Editors Liana Elopre - News Erica Bulger - Op/Ed Mia Norman - Features Katie Adams - Ampersand Kayla Carneal - A&E Josh Stewart - Sports Kenneth Wooten - Sports Spencer Lambert - Sports Taryn Langley - Double Truck Brittany Carpenter - Photo Savanah Stricklin - Photo Shereese Blanks - Copy Editor Madison Moss - Webpage manager/Ads manager Alexandria Binford - Circulation
Writers Tori Anderson-Jami Davis-Colby Eliades-Nate HuntJessica Lee-Jordan Minter-Devyn Pachmayr-Amir Vera
Editorial Cartoonist Tori Anderson
Adviser Chris Waugaman
The Royal News, PGHS 7801 Laurel Spring Road Prince George, Virginia 23875 804-733-2720 The Royal News is printed at The Progress-Index in Petersburg, Virginia
Junior Ben Kendall Professional affiliations & awards Columbia Scholastic Press Associations Gold Medalist 2008 National Scholastic Press Assoc. 1st Class Award 2008 Virginia High School Association Trophy Class 2008 Quill & Scroll International 1st Place 2008 SIPA All Southern 2008
November 14, 2008 - The Royal News - Page 3
LOOKOUT! Donnybrook in the hallway
he other day I was innocently sitting in class, twiddling my thumbs or some other equally fidgety activity I’m prone to, when suddenly a loud shriek – not unlike that of a mother baboon protecting her young – pierced my ears. Shocked, my eyes widened like a baby doe (I’m not Erika Bedwell sure where all these animal analogies are coming from. Just bear with me.) and I wondered to myself, “What in the world is going on?” Luckily, that question was immediately answered for me. “There’s a fight going on outside!” a fellow pupil of mine cried. “C’mon, let’s go watch!” And with those two short, instigated phrases, a small mob leapt from their seats and ran towards the door. Honestly, I haven’t seen anyone so excited since I saw all those people wearing capes at the midnight showing of The Dark Knight. I’ve never been the sort of person to take interest in school fights. The way I see it, I can watch Kimbo Slice on You-
Tube in my own free time. I go to YouTube to be entertained. This might make me sound like a total square (actually, the usage of the word “square” might make me sound like a total square, but whatever) but I don’t come to school to be entertained – I come to learn. And I have a really hard time learning when my peers are punching each other in the face or pulling out each other’s hair. But maybe I’m biased. I haven’t been in a physical altercation since preschool (I won by the way) and don’t care to get in one now. And even though I won that fight in preschool, chances are I wouldn’t be capable of doing that today, in addition to being as intimidating as a baby koala (Are you keeping track of those animal analogies?), I’m also not the strongest person physically. My arms hang limply from their sockets like wet noodles and I have legs that could proportionally fit a Christmas elf. If I want to hurt someone, my only hope is to do it through words. And even then, I’d probably stutter. But I’m getting off track. Like I said, we come to school to learn, not to beat each other senseless. One of the subjects we learn is history, where we study war after war after war. If you get to the very root of the cause of most of these
wars, you’ll find that we could have avoided the violence and destruction had we settled our problems peacefully. Note: There should be a light bulb going off over your head right now. And if you’re one of those people who have been suspended for punching your ex-boyfriend’s ex-girlfriend’s exboyfriend’s cousin, you should really be paying attention to this. We don’t just study wars to memorize the dates of battles or the names of important generals. We study them so we don’t repeat the mistakes of the past. But just because that spat with your best friend doesn’t take place on an international level doesn’t mean that this doesn’t apply to you. Whether you’re all hot and bothered about an unfounded rumor of weapons of mass destruction or the unfounded rumor of Cassie flirting with your boo, it’s wise to take a deep breather, find your chi, and walk away before you do something you regret like, say, slap someone upside the head. All I’m saying is; give peace a chance. It feels much better than a black eye.
Quit complaining; do something
s it just me or has anyone else noticed that the gas prices are quickly dropping faster than the Berlin Wall in ‘89? I am a little bit overwhelmed. I’ll go to fill up my gas tank one afternoon, and gas will be at, say $2.95. I fill up, thinking I’m getting the best deal for a couple days, and then while driving to school the next morning, it’s drastically dropped down Madison Moss to $2.79! It’s ridiculous. The prices are changing faster than I have a chance to actually fill up. Now, I’m not complaining about the falling gas prices, I do not, in any way, find it a bad thing. But one thing that really gets on my last nerves, is when people complain about gas prices being
too high. You’ll be at the pump, having a nice little small talk conversation with the person on the other side of you, and they start complaining that the high gas prices are burning a hole in their pocket. Then they finish pumping, and hop into their giant tank of an SUV. Really? If you can afford a $33,000 SUV, I would think you’d be able to afford your gas for it also. It frustrates me, when people who actually have the ability to go out and buy a more gas efficient car don’t even attempt to save their money. Driving around in a gasguzzler doesn’t make you any cooler, and it sure isn’t saving any money. In this ‘recession’ our country is going through, it really disappoints me that people are spending more time complaining about it than trying to help any of it, especially with the gas situation. There are plenty of solutions to help save money on gas. One, you could
stop filling up with the highest quality. Your car isn’t going to fall apart on the highway if you fill up with medium grade instead of premium. If you’re one of those people who just NEED to have a sports utility vehicle, it might be a good idea to invest in a crossover hybrid. They still have the style of SUVs, but they are definitely more gas efficient. I think my overall message is that if you aren’t doing anything to help the situation, please just be quiet. You can take initiative into making the fuel crisis a little bit better, so why don’t you? I am! I’m driving around in a 95’ Chevy, and I fill up, once, maybe twice every two weeks. It’s not that hard to make little sacrifices here and there when it comes to gas, and when you do, your wallet will thank you.
Making The Grade A B B-
Ring dance is quickly
approaching. On November 15, juniors and their guests will happily celebrate the distribution of their class rings. Saturday night will be full of fun and excitement starting with a ceremony that begins at 7:30 p.m.
Report cards are being
sent home November, 14, marking the end of the first quarter of the school year. Students may now reflect on their work they have done for the year. With the first quarter completed, only 3/4 of the year is left remaining.
The Mock elections
resulted in a great turnout in the number of votes. The large number of voters showed that students were taking an active part in the elections. The two candidates were tied in the number of votes received.
Retractions Oct. Football Game Back Date - the location of football match against Page the Meadowbrook on Oct. 10 was actually an away game.
Oct. Club Information in Op/Ed Letter - in a letter to the the statement that Page editor dual-enrollment students were not considered students at PGHS. Was not true.
Page 4 - The Royal News -November 14, 2008
Has Thanksgiving lost its meaning? Two sides debate whether Thanksgiving has lost its meaning as a holiday. Has it become a conventional holiday or is it still the same thankful holiday it’s been known for?
hanksgiving has lost its meaning in the original sense of the word. Thanksgiving is a time of celebration, a day when the founders of this country came together with Native Americans and ate in total agreement. The delbria Walton Native Americans, together with the colonists, sat and feasted and for one day there was no fighting and peace was restored within the colonies. Today, in our fast paced society, most see Thanksgiving as an extra day out from school, a time to eat, or see it as just the day before Black Friday. To some, it is a time to receive the comfort of family and food as everyone basks in the company of each other. Many others prepare themselves for the day ahead; they have a goodnight’s sleep, a full stomach and then they are set for discount shopping and exclusive items. Thanksgiving has been commercialized as it turns a huge profit for businesses that endorse it. The Macy’s Day parade is a prime example of promotion but not for the reasons that you may think. It promotes the festive nature of thanksgiving and not its actual meaning. No one takes the time anymore to reflect on what this holiday actually means to us as a whole. This time is not spent to go around the table as we all adorn the turkey, the dressings, and the rolls, to say what we are thankful for. Are we thankful for the year that we’ve been brought through or are we thankful for the year that lies ahead? Statistics show that the main focal point of Thanksgiving is not the meaning behind it, but the dinner that people have spent all day slaving over only to have tons of leftovers that will be used for lunches for the next week. I think that maybe one day the true meaning of Thanksgiving will be celebrated but as for now most just look forward to that big turkey.
Viewed “seen as an extra day out from school, a time to eat, or see it as just the day before Black Friday”
“(it) is about being with our family and being thankful for what we have gained, achieved, and currently have.”
Focal Point “Statistics show that the main focal point of Thanksgiving is not the meaning behind it, but the dinner that people have spent all day slaving over”
n Thursday, November 27th families across the nation will sit with their relatives and closest friends and practice there own traditions. Some, however, seem to think Thanksgiving has lost it’s meaning. daniel pead People tend to think that the holiday shopping of black Friday has taken over Thanksgiving. Some think the media once again has struck and ruined the infrastructure of our society with the broadcasting of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. I do not agree. Families have just simply worked that into there personalized traditions. Thanksgiving is a holiday that is about being with our family and being thankful for what you have gained, achieved, and have. Just because a family sits around all day watching a parade on the tubes, scurrying around preparing dinner, or are playing the annual family football game in the front yard does not mean they do not respect or have forgotten the true meaning of the holiday. It simply means they enjoy doing what they do on this day, so they have worked it in to their tradition! They do it as a family, they intermingle, and they eat. People automatically want to say that nobody is ever thankful for these luxuries. To me an individual does not have to verbally express the fact that he is thankful for something to be thankful for something. As long as they realize that they are thankful for their blessings it shouldn’t be a problem. And for those who think that Thanksgiving has been commercialized by events such as the Macy’s Day Parade; it’s a tradition. That’s what holidays are: celebrations of traditions.
November 14, 2008 - The Royal News - Page 5
Preparations for election day events Special presidential race forced long hours, new recruits
Virginia State University representative will visit Monday, Nov. 17, at 1:00 PM
Shereese Blanks trn copy editor
he wait during Election Day is unnerving, the constant anticipation that within hours the country has a new President. In order to keep track of votes the state and county are divided into precincts. The Prince George Registrar is in charge of all voter registrations and conducting all elections in the county. The Registrar has a three member electoral board that is appointed by a circuit court judge, and the three members then appoint the General Registrar. “The county is our precinct but we are also governed by federal and state law,” General Registrar Katherine Tyler said. The electoral board then appoints the officers of election, also known as poll workers. “Some volunteer, the local republican and democratic parties recommend people, a lot are new this year because it is such a big election,” Tyler said. These members of the registrar are usually appointed every February and serve a one year term. “Since this is such a big election we are still getting names for officers of elections,” Tyler said. Names were taken until two weeks before the election. To prepare for the task at hand the officers of election go through all day training before the Election Day. The number of officers of election assigned to each precinct depends on the quantity of registered voters in that precinct. For example, a precinct of approximately 700 voters will have six officers, while a precinct with approximately 3,000 will have 16 officers. The county has a total of approximately 20,600 registered voters. The county has eleven precincts: Richard Bland, Templeton, Union Branch, Rives, Harrison, Cap, Blackwater, Brandon, Courts, Jefferson Park, and Bland.
News briefs Scholarship fair registration due Friday, Nov. 21. Register at www.infinite scholar. org.
Voters are assigned precincts to vote when they receive their registration card. Sgt. Carlos Taylor casting his secret ballot at the Courthouse. Photo by Shereese Blanks. The work of the officers of election does not start at 6 a.m. and end at 7 p.m. The officers have to arrive at the designated precinct at 4:30 a.m. to set up the voting equipment, setting up signs and posters, and generally getting organized for the day ahead. Rose Scott was the chief officer of election for the Courts polling area. “It’s a lot of responsibility to be chief, you have to make sure things run smooth, do reports at end of the day and make sure everything is accurate,” Scott said. Scott has volunteered for the past ten years with the Registrar’s Office. “I just do polls, I don’t work at the Registrar’s Office,” Scott said. Then after the polls close, which is not always at 7 p.m., the officers then have to clean up the precinct, count, and do paperwork. Virginia law allows voters who are in lines before 7 p.m. to vote, therefore an officer is never certain when he or she will leave. The paperwork consists of a statement of results, tickets from the election, and the officers have to keep track of every voter and vote, to make sure that there are not too many or not enough votes. “You have to count for every ballot, if someone has a spoiled ballot, you have to count for those too,” Scott said. The officers of elections have strict laws that they have to follow. They are not allowed to vote before or after the
polls close, they could not look at actual ballots or explain a candidate to a voter. While a major part of the polling/ voting process, officers of election were not the only part of the process. Ted Atkinson is a lawyer who stood outside of the Jefferson Park polling place to protect the voters’ rights and answer their questions that they had. “I got an e-mail saying that attorneys were needed in the state of Virginia, so I decided I could be of special help,” Atkinson said. “I am basically here in case there are any troubles like with ballots or with the ID required, or if people are told they are in the wrong precinct,” Atkinson said. In order to do such a service Atkinson went under a legal bootcamp. “I had to learn a 40 page manual as well as all the Virginia laws,” Atkinson said. Atkinson ran into questions such as if voters could take pictures of their ballots after they casted them, for sentimental value. Another question was whether it was a problem for soldiers to register to vote the day of the election. These problems were resolved without any complications. “Everything flowed smoothly, everyone was patient there were no problems at all, I got home by 9 p.m.,” Scott said.
George Mason University representative will visit Monday, Nov. 24, at 9:00 AM
club news briefs Model judiciary club interest meeting after school on Monday, Nov. 17, in A-18. SGA meeting on Tuesday Nov. 18, directly after school in the library. National Honor Society will sell feathers for the fat turkey contest until Nov. 21.
Page 6 - The Royal News - November 14, 2008
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R Juniors anticipate joining their upper classmen in this ringing tradition
Jami Davis trn writer
n Saturday, November 15th, a hush will fall over the auditorium as the junior class prepares to receive their class rings. After the ceremony, the students will break the quiet and head into the cafeteria for the dance which will last until midnight. The junior class this year has the most students of any of the three grade levels. Of the more than 1200 students enrolled, over 450 of them are juniors. “Sometimes the ceremony can get a bit long, but a majority of our juniors do come to both the ceremony and the dance afterwards,” junior Jennifer Peterson of the ring dance committee said. The ring dance committee and their sponsor, Carol Bolyard, have been working to prepare for the ring dance and ceremony. The committee has been
November 14, 2008 - The Royal News - Page 7
l a y Affair meeting every Thursday since the end of September for up to an hour after school to get the event planned. “We already have our theme and color scheme chosen. Now we are working on assigning roles for the ceremony, decorations, and creating the tickets. Our theme this year is ‘A Royal Affair’ and the colors we have chosen to decorate with are purple, black, and silver,” Peterson said. Date forms must have been turned in by November 13th and tickets were on sale from October 30th until November 14th. Tickets this year needed to be purchased prior to the ceremony, and there was some importance to the time the tickets should have ben bought. “Tickets are sold way in advance, but make sure to buy them at the same time your date does so that when the seating charts are made for the ceremony, you can end up sitting beside your date,” Peterson said. This ceremony means many different things to the juniors but one theme seems to stand out to a majority of the students attending the dance, and even those who are not. “Last year the ring dance meant that I was finally a junior because I got a ring which is a big accomplishment of being in high school. The ring is a symbol of being a junior and it basically means you only have one more year left in high school,” former member of the ring dance committee Roxy Crawford said. Some teachers also agree with this opinion of what the ring, ceremony, and dance actually represent in a students
high school career. “It is a right of passage for students. It means they are finally upperclassmen. It is an accomplishment for juniors and it means they are going to be able to be successful and complete their high school career,” AP U.S. History teacher Cynthia Hasley said. Many students do realize the importance of the ceremony and dance in their high school career. “This dance is more serious because you know you’re growing up,” junior Austin Adams said. Even though all of these serious underlying themes present themselves throughout the ceremony, the ultimate theme of the dance is for juniors to have fun. After the ceremony has ended, the dance begins soon thereafter. The dance will have a D.J., food, and drinks. Also, attendees will be able to have their pictures taken at the dance. “The committee is providing the food this year, and we are going to have a professional D.J. to play music at the dance,” Peterson says. The night can turn into an event of realization for the students of their successes in their high school careers. Juniors attending the dance may receive more than just a ring on their finger, but also an understanding of what their time left in high school means. “Enjoy the ring ceremony. You will regret it if you don’t because it means you are officially a junior, and just have fun with your friends at the dance,” Crawford said.
What do you look forward to about the Ring dance?
“Getting my class ring, dressing up and dinner. I’m going to the Bistro in Petersburg.” Nikki Howard, 11th
“Looking all pretty and seeing my date. He is going to look really handsome in his tux and of course my ring.” Jenny Harrison, 11th
“I’m looking forward to dressing up and having a good time with my friend/ date. I’m excited to get my school ring and walk across the stage. It’s going to be a lot of fun.” Joanna Santiago, 11th
“Getting my ring, being with all of my friends and hanging out afterwards.” Van Powroznik, 11th
Page 8 - The Royal News -November 14, 2008
Adoption makes family an option Students chime in on their personal experience with adoptions
Junior Brock Congleton
Junior Katy Cash
Chelsea Nave trn editor-and-chief
eing thankful is a trademark thought of Nov. and this month thousands of adoptive families across the United States are taking this to heart as they celebrate
their families. November is National Adoption Month and in addition the 15th is set-aside for families to finalize their adoptions in courthouses across the country. One of the aspects of this month is to celebrate their joined families. “I have a mom, a step-dad and then four out of the five (children) are adopted and biracial,” senior Whitney Barringer said. “It’s big and it is definitely mixed,” sophomore Jordan Barringer said. The Barringer sisters both want to adopt biracial children when they are older because they are adopted less. “I learned that from my mom because when I was adopted, the Richmond Adoption agent told her that most of the time black families want all black kids and white families want white kids,” Whitney said. One of the goals this Nov. is to advocate
Sophomore Jordan Barringer the need for adoption of the 129,000 children still in foster care according to www.nationaladoptionday.org. Another goal of this year is to commemorate families who adopt. “I plan on adopting,” junior Brock Congleton said. “It means a lot to me because I was adopted and I want to keep it instilled in my family.” Jordan not only wants to adopt biracial children because they are adopted less, but she feels that it gives a better chance for the child in life. “I think it is a good source for kids who would be raised badly,” Jordan said. “It is a second chance.” Junior Katy Cash, who was adopted from Russia, also believes in this idea of a second chance and making the most out of a situation. “It’s a good lesson that there is always hope and always an option even if things go not as planned,” Cash said. “It’s a good example of a mistake turned into a good thing. Other people might learn that later on down the road, but I have always known
By the Numbers
1,600 foster care 1 in 4 of those not children in VA are waiting for a permanent home.
adopted will end up in jail within 2 years of leaving foster care.
Senior Whitney Barringer it. It was a good thing to learn, a good lesson. There’s always an option.” Whitney believes that adoption can help everyone involved. “I think that it is a good alternative to abortion because people who can’t have children can adopt. It is a better life than being in an abusive home or a family that can’t support them financially,” Whitney said. In the Barringer sisters’ cases, the adoption was closed. This means that it is not legal for Whitney or Jordan to find out about their birth parents until they are 18. “At 18, I will most definitely try to find out,” Jordan said. “You just wonder who your real parents are and who you resemble. I also want to see who the rest of my family is, not just my parents. Whitney will also begin her search when it is legal. “I can go to the Richmond Adoption Agency and they will give me my original birth certificate, my biological parents address and the last known phone number,” Whitney said. “I have a half sister and I am
Fewer than in of those not adopted from foster care will earn a high school degree.
going to try to find my mom so I can find her.” Other adoptees, like Congleton, have been able to get in contact with their birth parents. “I recently just found them,” Congleton said. “I have not spoken directly to my birth mother, but I have spoken to my brother.” Congleton located his brother using a popular network website. “I found him through MySpace,” Congleton said. “He’s 18 and the exact opposite of me. He’s tall with blond hair and blue eyes.” Although the range of adoption age can vary widely, the Barringers, Congleton and Cash were all adopted when they were very young. “The day I was born, I was adopted,” Congleton said. Cash took a little longer partly due to adoption requirements. “I was 13 months,” Cash said. “It took a month to get all the stuff done.” For sophomore Dallas Pitcock, whose family adopted Laney Zhou Christen from China six years ago, the process took a lot longer. “It took about two and half years to three years,” Pitcock said. “With the adoption agency it is a lot of paperwork. You’ve got to get approved. It goes back and forth between China.” Although Cash and Pitcock were on the different sides of adoption, it has made a very positive impact overall. “It feels good knowing you saved someone’s life,” Pitcock said. “One of the best things is having someone look up to you and knowing that you’re a role model. I am trying to do the best I can for her.” “My family is the perfect type of family to get adopted into. I’m lucky to have a family that wants to include me just as much as if I were born into it,” Cash said.
More than in of those not adopted from foster care will be homeless after turning 18.
According to: www.chsva.org
November 14, 2008 - The Royal News - Page 9
Coach Paul Cash’s Remarks on Adoption “I don’t ever regret going through all the headaches to adopt Katy or my son Eric (adopted in United States).” How did Katy come to your family? “We went to Russia to adopt her. She was in an orphanage in Sochi, Russia.” Can you tell me about the process that led you to adoption for your family? “Whooo, long, six tons of paperwork etc, etc, etc, but it’s definitely worth it. You go to classes for foreign adoption, you have a home study from a social services, six tons of paperwork from both governments (U.S. and Russia), fly in the big, steel bird to Russia, fill out a bunch of more paperwork using Russian translator, visit orphanages, fill out more paperwork, fly to Moscow with Katy for a physical, fly back to Sochi, fill out more paperwork, fly back to Moscow, more paperwork at the embassy, fly big steel bird back home, kiss American soil, once home finish paperwork and then change a lot of diapers.” Is there anything about adoption that you wished someone had told you? “I wanted to adopt three or more in Russia. I wish they had told me to be a lot more assertive and pushy to get what we were approved for – that was three children. And also to be more leery of the Russian facilitator who sets up everything. How did you choose the country to adopt from? “It was probably the most convenient, easiest government to work with in 1993.” What do you think about the new restrictions some countries are putting in place with adoption? “I wish they weren’t putting the restrictions on because parents that want to adopt from this country have so much to offer the orphaned children throughout the world. The conditions are unfortunate for some of the children in some of the orphanages.” Did you rely on any adoption support systems – groups, family? “No, it is virtually impossible to adopt on own in foreign land. We had to go through Catholic Charities.” Why would you recommend adoption for others? “Definitely for those who, for whatever reason, are unable to have children. It makes it possible to have a family and to give a family life for some children that are in orphanages.”
Page 10 - The Royal News - November 14, 2008
Squads bring array of skills JROTC focuses on variety of after school competition teams Colby Eliades trn writer
hey are present at every assembly, pep rally and graduation. They present our state and national flag and lead the pledge. They are the members of the Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps after school activities. There are numerous activities involving JROTC after school that any JROTC student can join. These activities include Air Rifle Team, Marksmanship Team, Raider Scout Platoon, Drill Team and Color Guard/Honor Guard. “After school activities are a lot like extra curricular activities in school. They enhance the high school experience and you will have many more experiences,” JROTC advisor Colonel Chandler said. Skills are learned through these after school programs, and students that are in
these programs will gain more leadership skills than students who are in JROTC. Students may gain these skills by being a team commander or assistant. “Most team leaders are level three or four cadets, and have above average leadership skills. They have also been on the team and want to do it again,” Chandler said. Another thing about after school activities is that they do not practice every day, giving the members time to do other things. “Practices are one afternoon a week from three to five o’clock,” Chandler said.
AIR RIFLE TEAM Members of this team learn to focus and to have discipline, while competing with other air rifle teams. The competition consists of shooting an air rife that fires at .177 caliber at a target while in the standing, kneeling, or prone position. “We just had a competition last Wednesday. We won 1st place for Prince George. I got the top score for my team,” junior Terryll Brunson said. Brunson has been on Air Rifle Team for two years, and finds it easy. He likes competing with other teams because he gets to see them every competition. Some students do not think that being on teams will help them in the future, but Brunson disagrees. “Yes I think it does, from a military
point of view,” said Brunson.
ARMED DRILL TEAM This team competes in drills and ceremonies using replica rifles. “I’ll have better leadership skill and discipline in order to overcome life’s obstacles,” Stephen Remos said.
UNARMED DRILL TEAM “I like competing and learning new steps,” sophomore Taejah Walker said. Walker feels that she has become somewhat of a leader through being on Drill Team. “I am able to teach others new things and to reassure younger people that Drill Team is fun and that you can learn a lot from being on it,” Walker said. Walker will join Drill Team again next year and eventually hopes to become the commander.
RAIDERS Raiders is the biggest after school group. The Raiders would be the equivalent to the Rangers of the military. “They run for endurance, and for cardio workouts they do suicides. Raiders also go into the woods and find points with a map to practice land navigation, learn how to assemble a rope bridge, and train in first aid. The members of Raiders must complete these in the 3 stations at competition,” Brunson said. Raiders practices on Thurs. after school.
Senior David Moody and junior Terryll Brunson inspect junior Joshua Mayes during Raiders practice. Photo by Brittany Carpenter
COLOR GUARD/HONOR GUARD Color Guard/Honor Guard is the most visible after school team and they do a lot. They do all ceremonial activities, present the colors, and do function’s on Fort Lee. “You learn how to march and hold the flag correctly,” junior Bruce Woodford said. Woodford like the rewards he earns for doing things well, like medals. Woodford also feels that he can teach others the things he has learned. “If anyone needs to know how to present the flag, I know what to do. The team also gives you discipline,” Woodford said. Whether the students are on Air Rifle Team, Drill Team or Color Guard/Honor Guard they all get additional leadership training, and gain additional leadership skills the may not receive in JROTC. They also get to compete against other teams and gain even more leadership skills. All of this through JROTC after school activities. “If you are involved in other things than just going to class, then you will have more experiences and more memories,” Chandler said.
November 14 2008 - The Royal News - Page 11
Working hard or hardly working?
What motivation is there to work during the holiday?
Regardless of recession students try to find jobs during the holiday season
“To have money to buy presents for other people and have extra cash.”
Tori Anderson trn writer
photo by Savanah Stricklin
ith the economy on the rocks, mortgages failing, fluc tuat ing gas prices, and more layoffs each passing month, students trying to find a job during the holidays may be out of luck. Or are they? However, there has been evidence that businesses hiring will have little to no change this holiday season. Competition for jobs is increasing as the economy changes; many think it is more difficult to find jobs, especially teens with very little job experience. Businesses simply cannot afford to hire new workers, and do not have the time to train them. But some places have not changed their hiring methods, such as fast food restaurants. “There hasn’t been much of a change in Arby’s hiring while I’ve worked there. I mean, people still need to eat,” senior Jesse Adams said. Bath and Body Works, Arby’s, and Sebera’s still hire the same amount of people, because the demand for their products has not gone down, even in the face of the financial crisis. Despite the lack of money for many people, gas, food, and bathing are apparently still essential and as thriving businesses as usual. For grocery stores, there has not been a change in the amount of hiring. However, at Ukrops, there has been a change in who is being hired. They have become more selective as to who is hired, but that may be due to the desire
April Capps, 12th
A sign outside Macy’s advertises job availabilities for the holiday season. It is opportunities like this that students take advantage of despite the economy. for better quality service than economic problems. “I’ve worked with Ukrops for a little over a year,” senior Ronnie Glickman said. “They still hire more during the holiday season rush. Ukrops hiring process is a little different than when I was hired, but the same amount is still taken on.” In light of this, there has been one significant change: hiring age. Many places have increased their hiring age to eighteen on their applications, such as Spencer’s Gifts at Southpark Boulevard Mall. Businesses simply do not have the time to train new workers, or the money. Sebera’s is having the opposite problem that most other businesses share. It has a shortage of employees, however, they too are only looking for experienced workers. “My shift has changed because we are so understaffed. A lot of people have to leave early now because of the economy, and three people have quit,” Sebera’s worker Jacob Barnes said. “But Sebera’s is only looking for people who are already trained, and who are ready to work right away.” Bath and Body Works is not changing their hiring amount either. A few weeks
ago they sent out their yearly ‘now hiring’ emails- one of the few places that actively campaigns for new employees. So is the economy really affecting the holiday job hiring rate? Different places show different things. But the overall consensus is that businesses will still hire seasonally, even if they change the methods by which they do so. No one feels as if their job is at risk, at least not in the immediate future. “Since I’ve worked at Ukrops so long, I don’t think that my job is in danger. They treat experienced employees really well. In fact, I’m getting a raise and having my hours changed,” Glickman said. Recently hired workers do not seem to be at risk at many places, either. “I hadn’t really thought about it. I mean, I hope it’s not at risk. I don’t think it is,” Adams said. “They hired me just a couple of months ago.” The job market pickings may be slim, but teens shouldn’t be too worried about finding a job this holiday season.
“To make money to buy Christmas presents for people. To buy yummy delicious cookies from the snack line.”.”
Matthew Skinner, 10th
“To get into the holiday spirit and to work in a holiday environment.”
Kendall Newman, 12th
“So that when you go holiday shopping you get employee discounts.”
Brittany Garter, 12th
Page 12 - The Royal News - November 14, 2008
Personal Preference E
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November 14, 2008 - The Royal News - Page 15
Page 14 - The Royal News - November 14, 2008
* l a i c e p *S ns o i t a z i n ga dent Or
Designed by: Taryn Langley
Clubs: On the Menu
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Bread & Condiments
Creating interest for the club with ways for people to express creativity, individuality, common interests, and positive ideas.
Meat Getting approval from parents, and administrators with a outline for the basic purpose for the club. Then the final, getting the school board to approve the club.
Lettuce & Cheese Getting members for the club. Advertising with PGTV, spokespeople and flyers.
How to make a club
tudents start new school organizations to express themselves, through a positive and effective outlet. “Anyone in good standings may participate in student organizations,” Assistant Principal Chris Romig said. It is one of Prince George County Public School policies to allow the organization and operation of both curriculum and non-curriculum related student organizations as well as permit these organizations to meet during noninstructional time. “If it’s a positive organization just go for it,” junior Laura Young, an executive board member of the SGA said. The school embraces positive new ideas for clubs. Through school organizations students gain the opportunity to express their creativity, individuality, as well as share their common interests, and positive ideas. “I was a part of the Gay/Straight Alliance, because I really liked what it stands for,” senior Dimphy Johnson said. Getting involved in clubs is a great way to make new friends, learn in a different environment, and participate in exciting events. “I got involved, because overall I like doing volunteer work,” Cultural Awareness club president senior Sam Siltz said. With so many traditional clubs such as the Student Government Association, Beta Club, Spanish Club, and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, many people are discouraged from starting new organizations, but as long as there are new ideas and desire, an organization can be created. With the proper planning, implementation of the club can be smooth. It is required by county policy that a student with a new idea must first gain the approval of their parent/legal guardian. After getting their guardians approval the student must find a sponsor who can regularly attend the organizations meetings as an advisor, and supervisor to the meetings members and activities. The club sponsor serves to advise club decisions, ensure that the club is being appropriate, and handling any tasks that student cannot such as monetary responsibilities. The student and sponsor will then set an appointment to meet with the principal, at which time they will present their club idea verbally as well as in a written outline. The outline should entail the overall goal and basic purpose for the club. If the principal supports the idea then the club will be presented to the school board, who will then approve or disapprove the club. After getting a club approved there are several other things the new organization must do. The most important objective is getting student support and accomplishing the club’s goal. “We try to have a lot of student outreach programs, I believe they make us more active and successful,” Siltz said New clubs must gain the support of interested students. Flyers and announcements on PGTV are common methods many clubs choose. “We are looking forward to starting many new activities, hopefully there will be a lot of posters,” Siltz said. Students look for many things when deciding whether they want to participate in a particular organization. Knowing these things can allow them club to achieve success. “Organization. They have to know what they are doing,” Young said is a major factor in whether or not she chooses to join an organization. “I’m not looking for just another random club,” Young said. Making clubs worthwhile, active, and enjoyable to the student body are important elements to making a club survive. With the proper time, effort, and dedication a club can achieve their overall goal.
Page 16 - The Royal News - November 14, 2008
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November 14, 2008 - The Royal News - Page 17
AMPERSAND Current economy changes “Black Friday”
Top Five Gift Ideas:
Alex Binford trn writer Beep Beep Beep. It is three in the morning and the alarm clock goes off. Stumbling out of bed, still groaning and complaining from the huge plate of Thanksgiving food you only engulfed a few hours ago. Black Friday is the busiest shopping day of the year and has become more popular over the years and is still growing. According to a New York Times 2007 article, the name Black Friday comes from the fact that stores traditionally are profitable that day. Being in the red would mean that they are not making the profit that day. Junior Megan Barglof goes Black Friday shopping every year. “I go because I get really good sales and I also have fun bonding with my mom,” Barglof said. Black Friday is either the day people hate or the day they love. Getting up early, catching the sales and successfully getting through the crowded store. The question is whether Black Friday is still just another day, or if it has become a national campaign. Black Friday is a day for going out, bonding, and shopping. Others are not even aware what this day is about. “I usually get up between three and four in the morning, but when I get up I usually just roll out of bed and put on whatever is warm and half the time I am still asleep,” Barglof said. Like with anything else the Internet has all kinds of sites dedicated to Black Friday, but the official site is www.theblackfriday.com. Many stores participate in this national event around the country, including Ace Hardware, Ikea, Old Navy, Walmart and many more. “I go anywhere there are good sales and I really like going to Kohls because they have amazing sales and you can get stuff dirt cheap,” Barglof said. With the economy at an all time low and the cost of living on the rise, will the turnout be lower, or will the deals lure more costumers? It is a day of super deals that can ease the wallet from the taxing holiday season.
1: Playstation 3 2: Touch Screen Computer 3: Digital Picture Frames 4: iPod Touch 5: Digital Cameras
Top Five (economically friendly) Gift Ideas: 1: Anything sentimental 2: Homemade items (Food, Candles, etc) 3: Used Video Game Consoles (GameStop) 4: Used Mp3 Players (Target) 5: Gift Cards
Source: Based on a 75 student survey
Quote Of The Month:
“A man’s errors are his portals of discovery” -James Joyce
The PG Players invites you to share in a wonderful year of productions.
Be sure to catch Midsummer’s Night Dream & The Cabaret
123 days left The section formally known as “Variety” will now be called “Ampersand”. An ampersand is that key on your keyboard used to make the “&” symbol. It means “everything else” and in true Variety tradition, that is truly what this section is about. This section is for all the miscellaneous subjects that the newspaper as a whole doesn’t cover.
Page 18 - The Royal News - November 14, 2008
Covenant Presbyterian Church Located at 201 Walnut Ave, Petersburg, VA
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By the lake behind the new Food Lion on S. Crater Rd
Please join us for our Community Thanksgiving Service
Sun., Nov. 23rd at 4:00 PM
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~Dec. 1st-5th ~Sold during lunch blocks ~$50 ($4 for Senior icon)
Senior Ads due Tuesday, Dec. 2nd. Please turn in between 3:00-7:00 PM in the Commons!
November 14, 2008 - The Royal News - Page 19
Band completes successful season
Jessica Lee trn writer
rumpets, drums, and clarinets are just some of the instruments one would hear in a marching band. The band appeared at a competition on Oct. 25, at the Virginia Band & Orchestra Director’s Association competition in Fredericksburg. “We looked forward to doing VBODA and were confident going into it,” junior Gage Walker said. With the many different sounds blending into what they want, the band prepares to go into the competition feeling comfortable with their music. They practice three times a week for two hours and practice doing the different formations they will do in the competition. “The most important thing about being in the band is to understand it is not just about you, it is teamwork. You cannot have one person doing their own thing while everyone else is trying to
do the performance together,” junior Givonie Johnson said. At the first competition of the year, Prince George received six out of six trophies, made first in a triple A class, and also received second place overall. They received these awards because they enjoyed themselves and gave it their all. Confidence in the notes one plays is key in competition. Whether the instrument is easy or hard, to play, the person playing it has to know what they are playing. Songs that get you hyped are even easier to play. “’Raiders of the Lost Arc’ is my favorite song to play because that is when I get to play the loudest,” sophomore Wayland Huckaby said. Regardless of how long a band member has been playing, they can all get pumped before a competition. Some just concentrate on the music, while others decide to sing songs. If you are more ready to go out there, the more you can enjoy it. “Before a competition, we try to concentrate on the show and try to just put marching band into our heads,” Huckaby said. Practicing before the competition
helps greatly also. Johnson tries to practice on her own time on the weekends. It helps to practice, because as the old saying goes, practice makes perfect. Though the competition went as planned, many people were not in attendance for they did not know if the competition would be rained out. The band played their best and that was all they could have wished for. “‘Over the Rainbow’ was the best song we played. It is always the best one we do,” junior Courtney Wall said. ‘Over the Rainbow’ is usually a very good song for the band to play because they have such an instrumental part in the middle that it just makes them feel good. It is the type of feeling that just makes you want to play more and not stop which helps the band members get even more hyped for the competition. Usually, placement in a competition would be first through last. In the band competitions, they receive numbers. At this competition, the band received a rating of 3 out of 5. The highest a band can score is a 1. That is, a superior rating. “I thought they had a really good show. It was the best show to me since
Seniors Karl Lothamer, Heejung Lim, Jaymine Davis, Lee Anderson play their last halftime show. Photo by Jessica Lee I got here,” director Michael Warnock said. A number of different things ran through the members’ minds and affected the performance. The dreary weather played a big role in the minds of the performers. Still, they tried their best. “Not everything went right. Some things were great while others could have been better,” Wall said. Wall was concentrating the most on her personal best and what she could do to improve her performance. When the band comes back from a competition, they try to learn from their mistakes and go into the next competition with an even better score. “We do not have any more competitions for this year, but next year we have to be more disciplined and practice hard basically to improve on our score,” Johnson said.
Page 20 - The Royal News - November 14, 2008
Toad’s Place vs. The National
Twilight movie competes with Harry Potter
t’s a Friday night and you are looking for a good show to go to. There are several music venues in Richmond. So how do you choose one? You could start with either Toad’s Place or The National. Toad’s Place Kayla Carneal is located at 140 Virginia Street and The National is at 708 East Broad. Neither one of them have their own parking areas. There are parking decks available around both venues. There is a parking deck right behind The National. The furthest you will have to walk for a parking deck is about three blocks, which is good because no one wants to walk 100 miles to get to the car. There are different options for getting tickets. The box office for Toad’s Place usually opens two hours before the doors to give plenty of time for music lovers to purchase their tickets. The National’s box office opens one hour before the show. For both venues you can also order them before and pick them up at the box office, or just print them off at home, my personal favorite. Toad’s Place and The National are both general admission venues, meaning that there is no assigned seating. You stand. Giving you the ability to get as close as you want. There are available seats on the second floor of the venues. Toad’s Place has “skyboxes” that you can rent. The National is a newer venue than Toad’s Place. It has state-of-the-art-VDOSC sound system. There are only 6 in the country and 3 on the east coast. Toad’s Place is a little older and has stateof-the-art Claire Brothers sound system with a fully digital Yamaha soundboard designed to accentuate the unique shape and construction of the space. The rules for them both are relatively the same, no smoking, no moshing, and they have to check with the artist on professional cameras. So which one to choose? Newer is not always better, but in this case I would say it is. The National wins.
Two series stand out as the best books of the generation Mia Norman trn features editor
wilight fans look anxiously forward as their favorite book series is scheduled to transform into a cinematic fantasy three weeks earlier than previously thought. The reason for the more recent release date is the delay in the release of the upcoming Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince movie, which was moved to show during the summer of 2009. Both book series’ have an extremely dedicated fan base, and with both books having storylines and characters that take on similar imaginative aspects, rivalry between Twilight and Potter enthusiasts has grown into a disagree-
ment that continues to be expressed on message boards and forums across the web. Although both Twilight and Harry Potter include elements such as werewolves, wizards, powers, and vampires; the storyline is fundamentally different. Twilight is the story of a young human girl named Bella who falls in love with Edward, a handsome 17 year old, who just also happens to be a vampire. Harry Potter starts off as a story of an 11year-old boy who is sent to Hogwarts, a wizarding school, after learning of his magical abilities and having many adventures and battles with his nemesis, Voldemort. Twilight is full of romance and love between Edward and Bella, which many teenagers can relate to. “Twilight is more our age, it has interesting plot twists and the characters are more believable,” ninth grader Lauren Swope said. “I like Twilight better because I love the romantic scenes and the storyline is really good,” sophomore Lindsey Story said. Harry Potter is set in an imaginary place in London, instead of rainy Forks, Washington where Twilight takes place. Harry Potter also boasts a plot full of quests and adventures that vary within each book.
“I prefer the Harry Potter series, because it is more suspenseful, making it more enjoyable,” ninth grader Todd Moore said. “Both books are really good, but I really like the world that J.K. Rowling created,” sophomore Lauren Core said. The Twilight movie is to be released on November 21st, 2008 with Robert Pattinson playing the role of Edward. Pattinson is no stranger to fantasy movies, portraying Cedric Diggory in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, and while Cedric made an attractive character, teenage girls across the nation are captivated by Edward Cullen. “Edward is my favorite character because he is how all guys should be. He is Bella’s Prince Charming,” Swope said. This Halloween, the Appomattox Regional Library in Hopewell held its own Twilight bash between six and eight p.m., proof of just how absorbed people can get into these worlds, if the packed aisles at Books-A-Million for their midnight book release parties wasn’t proof enough. These midnight releases have been held for both the Twilight and Harry Potter book series’ and each time, the store is packed with fans eager to get their hands on the books that have quickly become a cultural phenomenon.
November 14, 2008 - The Royal News - Page 21
Gospel Choir guided by higher spirit
Janai Cunningham trn writer
allelujah…. This is the hymn that is heard echoing throughout the halls of F-wing. Who is the source of this song? It is the Gospel Choir, a group of individual voices as one strong spiritual note. Students join Gospel Choir through choral. Gospel choir is an after school elective consisting of a group of musically gifted students who love to give praise to God through song. “Its energetic, free-willing, everyone can be themselves with their own style,” senior alto Brea Cambell said. “I’m more outgoing [because of gospel choir]. I sing louder and connect with my audience.” Sophomore soprano Faith Gilliam stated that she joined gospel choir because she likes to sing and also loves the Lord.
“Hopefully this will give me a better relationship with the Lord and I can calm down with my rambunctiousness,” Gilliam said. The one who creates the harmony is Director Monique Woodard. Woodard does not only guide the soulful sounds of her students into one, but also helps them reach closer to God. “I’ve seen students in terms of a spiritual level [change],” Woodard said. “I’ve seen them become closer and more of a family unit, more towards the positive direction.” Junior Assistant-Director Clarence Bell, who has been in choir since the third grade, helps out. “At times I’ll have to yell to get them focused more,” Bell said Bell describes himself as a wellrounded guy. He is actively involve in his community by being apart of his church choir as well and loves to perform. Bell stated that it does not matter where he presents as long as it is on stage. He enjoys different performances and being invited to sing. Junior tenor Keon Chapman stated that the gospel choir has showed him how to harness his fustarations through music.
“Gospel Choir has been a big part of my life,” Chapman said. “So far the most exciting thing about gospel choir I would have to say is learning the music because a lot of people think gospel choir is about people getting up there and singing loud. It takes a lot more to produce a sound and to give praise to the Lord.” Gospel choir helps students improve their way of thinking. It helps them think about their actions and the responding consequences. “I think about stuff differently. I put religion into what I do so I make fewer bad decisions,” junior soprano Elizabeth Johnson said. The gospel choir in itself is a community service. They give praise to God through their high energy and up beat songs. “I just enjoy myself and believe in what I’m singing. I’d just be happy to touch one person in the audience,” Gilliam said. No stranger to the stage the Gospel Choir has performed at churches and choir competitions over the years. Some of these include St. Paul Baptist Church, Unity Baptist, Bacorial Service, Sacrite Heart, the Fiestaville competition and
Director Monique Woodard teaches as Elizabeth Johnson plays the piano and Breas Cambell sings. Photo by Jessica Lee so on. “You can look forward to great things from this group,” Woodard said. “Even though they are the newest group to competition. They love to sing whether they compete or not.” Their first performance was on Halloween, Oct. 31 at Unity Baptist Church in Hopewell. They got positive feed back from the audience. “We had to adjust to the way the setting was,” Woodard said. “Overall I thought it was cool.” They sang a variety of gospel songs that got the audience interested and kept them entertained. Lord Prepare Me, for example, was recognized by the church goers although the gospel choir transformed the beat into their own style. The audience was so pleased with the gospel choir that they wanted them to stay for an encore!
Page 22 - The Royal News - November 14, 2008
- Bibles for Adults, Teens & Children - Books for all ages - All types of Christian Music - Latest DVD’s, Games, & Children Enteratinment - Unique Gifts - Church Supplies to Support Your Ministries - We Can Burn Your Favorite Music Instore!
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November 14, 2008 - The Royal News - Page 23
Runner-up claws back to top Boys Volleyball achieves goals set out by returning seniorsbrought waves
Amir Vera trn writer
ast season the boys varsity volleyball finished the season with only four ‘ district wins. Unlike this year, they finished the regular season 8-3 and in second place in the Central District. In addition, they accomplished this task with a new coach and a new set of captains. Boys varsity volleyball coach John Pelter, took lead of the team after having coached junior varsity for two previous years; this year was his first as the varsity coach. Pelter was familiar with the players because he had coached them on junior varsity. “I knew most of them from junior
varsity; I’ve coached all but two of them. The hardest thing was them getting used to my style,” Pelter said. Pelter’s style, according to the players, was more verbal than the previous coach, Chris Waugaman. Everything else, they believed, was still the same. While his style is not as different as Coach Waugaman’s, one thing that is different is the experience. Pelter only played volleyball in college for fun, never on a team, so he had a lot to learn. “My real experience comes from Coach Waugaman, and I learn the rest from the players,” Pelter said. Along with a new coach, comes new leadership. This year, seniors Joey Taylor and Brett Koch are the captains of the team. Each felt differently about the new positions. “It feels great, I’ve been waiting five years to lead this team,” Koch said. “ It feels pretty good. Me and Brett have been holding the team together through bad games,” Taylor said. Both Taylor and Koch played for Pelter when they were his JV players, so the three were close. Throughout the season, the two captains and the coach would rely on the strength of this relationship. There would be grueling games, but there would be great ones as well. The best game of the season, according to all three, would be their first game against
Matoaca. The game ended with the Royals winning three games to one. “It was our best game because it was dominant and it was the best defense we played all season,” Pelter said. In contrast the worst game was the second game against Thomas Dale, the two captains believed. The Royals would lose one of the games 25-5 due to lack of passing and the dominance of the jump serves from Thomas Dale. “It was the worst because we played scared and should have won,” Taylor said. But, in Pelter’s opinion, the toughest game was the second game against Matoaca where the Royals lost three games to two. “It was the worst for two reasons. First, we were up 2-0, then lost 3-2. Secondly, we lost any chance at a regularseason district title,” Pelter said. Though a tough loss for the team, the players and the coach never lost sight of their original goal. “Our goal all year was the district title. I just reminded them that we could still go to the district tournament and go to regionals and states,” Pelter said As the season came to a close, the players and coach only had one thing on their mind, next season. With all the seniors leaving, there will only be one
The boys volleyball team waits for the start of the game against Colonial Heights. After struggling against the Colonials in previous years, the Royals defeated them twice this season. Picture by Taryn Langley varsity player returning next season, junior Travis Spain. “I’m the only returner. I’m a little nervous because I’m going to be with the junior varsity players,” Spain said. Coach Pelter also realizes the impact of only having one varsity player returning. “I’m going to miss the seniors for two reasons. First, next year we are going to be a really young team. And second, its going to be hard without the seniors, I’ve been coaching all but two for the last two years,” Pelter said. Although next season seems frightening to Spain, the older players believe that with hard work and the new skill coming up, the Royals can have a pretty decent season. Coach Pelter also believes that with determination, next season could be successful. “Next season will be challenging. But I don’t believe in lowering expectations, so the expectation of a district title will stay the same,” Pelter said.
Page 24 -November 14, 2008 - The Royal News
Records are made to be broken
Players lacking commitment hurt Putting themselves team, school pride in the record books
tudent athletes need to have numerous attributes and qualities to excel in high school sports, but the most useful of all would probably be commitment. This commitment requires dedication, perseverance, and resolve that push you onward to a goal. A goal of becoming a better person and being able to look back on one’s accomplishments and feel pride in yourself Josh Stewart for sticking with something and following it through to the end. Yes, commitment in sports is a worthwhile sacrifice that must be made if you want to succeed at what you do, but failure to commit can also bring negative effects onto a situation as well. Lack of commitment is giving up, throwing in the towel, or failure for lack of a better word. If you start a sport at the beginning of the season you should at least see it through to the end of that season if not more. No matter what sport, individual or team, don’t quit because of some petty excuse like being sidelined, not having a good game or practice, or even a suspension for a week or two. If you don’t like something a coach is doing, brush it off, put it in the back of your head and don’t let it get in the way of your competing, but under no circumstances should you give up. Doing this will only harm your team, bring down your school, and most importantly of all hurt yourself. Swallow your pride because there are more important things on the line than yourself. When you participate in a school sponsored sport you represent our high school and should strive to present it in the best light possible not mar it by failing to complete something you set out to do. Sports require a dedication of time, body, mind, and effort if you want any type of success in what you do, this success leads to not only honoring ones school, but obtaining ultimate self- satisfaction.
among goals of track athletes this upcoming season Jordan Minter trn writer
he tr ack season is rapidly approaching, but for some it is not coming fast enough. Athletes have been r igorously preparing since the conclusion of last season in order to leave a lasting mark in the record books. To achieve these records requires great dedication and personal discipline even in the off-season. Preparation includes gaining knowledge at camps, experience at the track, and fitness training at home. “In the off season I went to the track three times a week and went to the gym on Fort Lee,” senior Amber Pierson said. The preparation not only applies to
sprinters, but other aspects like track and field event as well. The pole vaulters had opportunities to attend two camps over the summer in North Carolina, and every Tuesday and Thursday morning some individuals would practice at the track with coach Cash. The team continues to practice hard as the coaches stress daily practice goals during two hour practices five days a week. Daily practice goals ensure that each athlete is working to get better. Athletes look to breaking records for inspiration and encouragement while trying to reach the highest level of competition possible. “I aim to break an Olympic record because it inspires me to work harder. Also, it allows me to set small goals on my way to a bigger goal,” said senior Taryn Saunders. The coaches, however, feel that aiming to break records can be detrimental in the long run. “I think, for them, it is a great way to set reachable goals, but records should not be the only goal because they could be setting a ceiling on their goals.” Coach Paul Cash said. An indiv iduals goals may set restrictions on the entire teams abilities and hurt group unity, therefore, hindering the teams success as a whole and keep the team from progressing towards increased team goals. “Too much focus on individual records causes a loss of focus on the team. That’s not healthy. When team members worry too much about personal gain,
they don’t focus on helping each other. For that reason, as a coach, I do not emphasize anything but doing it the best way, the right way, and improvement. I always emphasize team concept even in individual sports. They must help each other by encouraging and correcting others’ technique and then relate it back to themselves.” There are many opportunities for the track members to officially break records. They can break them at any track meet sanctioned by the Virginia High School league. These meets are usually on Wednesdays, Fridays, or Saturdays. “Districts or regionals is probably the best time for breaking records, because it is at the end of the season and they should be peaking at their best performance.” Coach Paul Cash said. When at the meets, individual preparation varies for everyone. While most agree that the most important preparation is practice, everyone has little tendencies and pre-game rituals that they believe helps give them the extra edge over their opponent. “Before I participate in a track meet, I pray and listen to uplifting music,” Tarn Saunders said. Whether emphasizing personal records is a positive or negative practice is still undetermined and will continually be debated by coaches and players, but regardless of this fact our athletes are prepared to work hard and to continue to build on their talents and reach as high as possible into the ranks of the top track teams in Virginia.
Melissa Negron - Field Hockey 1.What are your pre-game rituals? “I drink a lot of water and stay quiet to get focused. I do the control-box, and I like to dribble the ball on my stick so I can get my hand-eye coordination down.” 2.How do you keep in shape outside of school? “I run around the neighborhood, I do crunches and sit-ups, and work on my ball.” 3.What is a lesser-known fact about Field Hockey? “It’s similar to soccer. The positions and strategies are the same, the only difference is that there are sticks.”
4.How long have you been playing? “ Four years.” 5.Do you eat anything specific before a game? “I always eat pasta for lunch on game days.” 6.What position do you play? “Right Defender, known as right back.” 7.What was your most successful play? “As a defender, it was pretty exciting when I scored at Midlothian and Hopewell district games.” 8.Do you plan on playing in college? “Probably club or intramural, just because I love the sport and I don’t want to stop playing now.”
November 14 , 2008 - The Royal News - Page 25
Success starts in preseason
Running, as well as strength training highly emphasized in teams preseason conditioning program Spencer Lambert trn sport editor
lot of running,” junior Jonathon Burton said. It is a general consensus among the members of the wrestling te a m , w h o a re participating in the teams preseasonconditioning program, that running is very prevalent in their workout regiment. “Running is pretty much all we do,” senior Jason Schrinel said. It is crucial for the wrestlers to be prepared for the upcoming season. Attending conditioning and participating in the vigorous running ensures that a
wrestler will have the needed endurance during matches. “Running is a really big deal because you have to have stamina,” junior Tay Bell said. “You have to be conditioned so you don’t get winded during matches,” Schrinel said. During matches it is key that the wrestler be able to perform at their highest caliber from the beginning of the match to the last period, which is where being conditioned is an advantage. “It is really important to build up your endurance for the season, because when you are in a match and you are in the third period you really need that stamina,” senior Chris Dooley said. “We need to get in shape for wrestling so we can last all three rounds,” Bell said. Along with stressing endurance, the players are also focusing on building their strength to achieve more power so they can dominate opponents. In the teams strength training a large amount of focus is placed on legs. “We focus on leg muscles,” Bell said “That is key, because you need a powerful base to wrestle.” “A lot of emphasis is on legs, because in wrestling the majority of your strength comes from your legs,” Dooley said. Conditioning also serves as a time for the players to hone skills that are crucial in
matches, and develop their technique. “We do a lot of mat drills like bear crawls, penetration step, crab walks, forward and backward rolls, Kelly shuffles, and lots of pushups,” Dooley said. The players who have gone through conditioning in previous seasons, especially the seniors, have an advantage over the newer players who are experiencing conditioning for the first time. “The new guys have trouble getting used to the workload, because they don’t know what it’s all about so a lot of them dropout,” Dooley said. For the newer players preseason conditioning allows them to catch up both physically and mentally with the veteran team members. “I think we are pushed harder because we need to get in shape more and need to learn more,” Bell said “It’s a challenge learning maneuvers and battling more experienced wrestlers. Others however see the entire team as being pushed equally. “It seems we are all pushed equally, at least for now anyway,” Burton said. “Everybody is equal, the seniors try to help out the others and keep up the pace,” Schrinel said. This year’s team features several seniors, who are looking forward to their final season as high school wrestlers. The seniors have high hopes for their final
Senior wrestler Tyler Kovski and junior Adam Relford engage during a practice match during the teams first practice on Monday November 10th . The team has conclude their preseason conditioning program and are turning their focus towards the season. Photo by Brittany Carpenter
season, placing lofty goals and striving to achieve them. “I want to place in regionals, and make weight every match,” Dooley said, “I am working as hard as possible.” “I hope to get first in district for the team, and make it to states,” Schrinel said “I am working harder after school, running, lifting, weights, and just practicing extra.” The younger players are also setting goals for the season. Although their goals are not quite as lofty as the seniors they are still striving for success and are even working outside of the teams conditioning to get better. “I guess not to get pinned,” Burton said, “ I condition on my own, I keep running on my own and I keep up the stretches.” “I am working hard and working out,” Bell said “I just want to be good enough to win.”
Page 26 - The Royal News - November 14, 2008
Cheering their way to victory Hard work and dedication brings excitement , second place finish in District competition ought Kenneth Wooten trn sports editor
’ clap ‘G’ clap ‘H’ clap ‘S’ clap, Let’s Go Royals”. This was just one of the many cheers that the varsity cheerleaders had performed during their biggest competition of the year. With smiling faces, determined spirits and open minds, the cheerleading squad had gone into battle and ended up coming out amongst the top with a second place finish. “We had prepared by practicing almost every chance we had and had performed the routine so many times until it was perfect,” senior Sydney
Chappell said. Each of the cheers that the cheerleaders performed required much practice, which started during the summer and went up until districts. Every cheer was meant to help the cheerleaders win. “Our routine was really difficult because it was designed to give us the most points possible,” junior Kimberly Stolz said. To do each cheer, it required physical endurance, balance and memory of what movements to accomplish. “The routines are extremely difficult until you master them,” Chappell said. For most of the athletes who participated in this sport, conditioning started as early as school had let out in June of last year. Most of the training was meant to keep each cheerleader in excellent shape to help perfect the routine even more. “The routines were especially difficult because we had to do one hard trick after another while cheering and smiling at the same time,” junior Shana Little said. Besides each athlete being individually prepared for each routine, each member must also be great in synchronization, or in the ability of performing each movement as a whole or as a team. “The best teams breathe together.
That’s what we strived for,” senior Kayla Hughes said. Being able to be in sync with every member increases the chances for perfecting each routine and also scoring more points. When they were scored though, each member tried to refrain from making mistakes whether it was from tumbling over to falling to not being in sync. “We tried to make as few mistakes as possible,” Hughes said. Along with the fact that winning districts would have been a great goal to accomplish, most of the cheerleaders just wanted the chance to compete. “I think most of us were just ready to compete and show everyone what we had been working so hard on,” Hughes said. Districts for cheerleading may had required much time for practice since each member practiced for three months; but in the end they only three minutes was given to them to perform in front of the judges. Winning districts was their main goal, but being able to beat their rival, Thomas Dale, was also a major goal that each member wanted to accomplish. Although, they were not able to beat Thomas Dale, they ended up coming in second and still felt great about it.
Top: Juniors Chelsy Kovski, Caitlin Haydt, and sophmore Samantha Dalton yell to encourage crowd reactions while waiting for the judges score for their performance. Photo by Devyn Pachmayr
“I felt really excited after getting runner-up. I felt like we had done the best we could have done,” senior Paige Gibbs said. Along with their desire to win, the point deduction system was another thing that was always on their mind. Almost each and every action done by the cheerleading squad individually was either beneficial or harmful to the team on the point scale. “We normally start out with 100 points from each judge. Altogether there were three judges. Then depending on how we do, deductions are taken off for each mistake we have,” Hughes said. For the team to score the best out of all the other schools, each cheerleader must be able to hold out and try to limit or make no mistakes. The better the team does, the less they are marked. “The whole performance was the best we could do. The worst thing though for me was that it was my last year,” Chappell said.
November 14, 2008 - The Royal News - Page 27
Students experience reverse roles Powderpuff Recent History Year 2004 Class of 2004 12 Class of 2005 10 Year 2005 Class of 2005 7 Class of 2006 0 Year 2006 class of 2006 18 class of 2007 15 Year 2007 Class of 2008 28 class of 2007 25
Annual game gives girls chance to tote the rock while guys cheer them on, excite the crowd Devyn Pachmayr trn sport editor
rince George will be holding its annual Powderpuff Game on Tuesday, November 25, at 3:30. The tables turn as the girls take over the football field and the brave boys of Prince George push all stereotypes and ridicule aside and put on their short shorts. The class of 2009 won the previous year, and if they win again this year it will be a school record. “Nothing could prevent the seniors
from winning this year, we want our bragging rights. Losing is not an option. But the game is totally all in good fun,” senior Tava West said. As the girls prepare for the big game, both competitive and nervous feelings stress the environment. The encircling tension can be felt through the air. “The game is going to be very competitive, but we’re all looking forward to the experience,” junior Elizabeth Walsh said. “The juniors are definitely looking out for Meredith Powroznik, she’s a great soccer player, so my strategy is to bring my ‘A’ game,” Walsh added. One must remember the drive behind the football players; the cheerleaders. Their zany antics and dangerous stunts are creative and motivational. The girls are all looking forward to watching the boys take on their backwards roles. Some of the girls even volunteered to help them learn cheers and donate clothing. “The seniors are going to win, absolutely and positively. Our rigorous cheerleading is going to give the senior team that extra push that will lead them to victory,” senior Ryan Montgomery
said. This years Powderpuff game is the second game Montgomery has participated in as a cheerleader. The participants are all teeming with excitement. The tension is rising. Even the coaches are feeling the energy. “I’m looking forward to coaching the girls. It gives me a chance to share my teaching skills out of the classroom with students I don’t really know,” offensive director Chris Waugaman said. The game is not all for fun, some of the team members are taking this year’s game very seriously. “The overconfidence of the seniors is going to be our downfall. I’m going to focus on keeping the girls in check. I’ll make sure they don’t get too confident,” senior Meredith Powroznik said. Certain students who are being watched are expected to excel in the game. “I’m watching Amanda Tomlin; she’s fast, and one of the best runners on the track team. I’ll be watching her like a hawk,” Powroznik said. Kenisha Brown and Meredith Powroznik are included in the “must watch” list according to some of the junior girls. The practices will be held on
Senior Meredith Powroznik runs the ball as quarterback against the 2008 seniors during last year’s Powderpuff game. Powroznik and the rest of the juniors were victorious Photo taken by Phillip Bingham November 17, 18, 19, and 20 from 3:00 to 5:00 after school. Here the coaches are going to teach the girls the basics of football and get them used to working together as a real team. The game will be played with the same rules as regular football, only hard hitting will not be allowed. The game will be played as flag football. The Powderpuff game is an opportunity for the girls to learn cooperative skills, sportsmanship, and of course, how to play football like the guys. It is a chance for the guys to let loose, learn some serious cheers and stunts, and to show their school spirit in the most extravagant ways they can come up with. The Powderpuff game can ensure a good time for both participants and visitors alike as a memory they will carry on throughout their years.
Football gets a hard won victory for their last game against Petersburg to finish off the season with a 4-6 over all record.
Varsity field hockey lost a heartbreaking match to Lee-Davis in double overtime and penalty shots in the first round of the regional tournament.
Both boys and girls volleyball lost in the first round of the district tournament, concluding their successful seasons.
Competition squad finishes runner-up in Central District pg. 26 photo by Devyn Pachmayr
Sophomore Sam Dalton, Logan Blystone, Junior Alyce Daniels, and Seniors Jessica Adkins, Katelyn Akers and Sydney Chappell finish off their routine in the Central District Tournament.
Boyâ€™s Basketball against John ComeVarsity Support the Royals by attending Marshall
one of these upcoming home games: Wrestling: Tri Hopewell /Dinwiddie/Clover hill 12/03 Boys Basketball : Sussex Central 12/02 Girls Basketball: Appomattox Regional Governorâ€™s School 12/02