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November 2011

November Elections Draw Close

Youth Connection is a product of Bellevue Youth Link

By Bonnie Pan November 8th is the date of the general elections for King County Council, Bellevue City Council, and Bellevue School Board. On October 5th, I attended a candidate forum where the contenders battled it out through concise, one-minute-or-less answers to questions ranging from the serious—transportation and our fiscal problems—to the atypical—should we build an NBA hockey rink to draw in more business? Up in the hot seats were Jane Hague and Richard Mitchell for King County Council, Aaron Laing, John Stokes, John Chelminiak, Michelle Hilhorst, Claudia Balducci, Patti Mann, and Jennifer Robertson for positions 1, 3, 5, and 7 of Bellevue City Council, and Betsy Johnson and Steve McConnell for position 1 of Bellevue School Board. So what are the issues at stake? Transportation, for one, was a hackneyed subject by the end of the evening. Every candidate at some point talked about the necessity to finish the East Link light rail, with minor variations. “My advice is pretty simple,” stated incumbent John Chelminiak, in a tone that would sum up the groups’ collective attitude, “Git ‘er done.” Richard Mitchell agreed, assert-


ing that “We cannot take a decade to discuss transportation issues” and that fixing transit problems would be his main objective, should he be elected. The weakened economy was another popular topic at the forum. Jane Hague maintains her most important goal would be to make sure the economy moves forward, that enough jobs are provided, and that the officials of King County exercise fiscal restraint to promote excellent infrastructure and quality of life. She concluded her stance with a proclamation of merit, “You know I am balanced and I have a broad basis of support.” Hague has a variety of endorsements from organizations around

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Youth Link is a partnership of the City of Bellevue and Bellevue Public Schools

Inside this issue: King County Elections 2011 p. 1 p. 2 Kids Care Coat Drive Trick or Treat for Cans p. 2 p. 3 Occupy Wallstreet p. 4 NBA Lockout p. 4 NaNoWriMo New Rock Climbing Walls p. 5 p. 5 Pumpkin Sips Recipe p. 6 Black Friday p. 6 Pottermore p. 7 Thanksgiving p. 8 Fiction Section Concerts p.10 p.10 About us

Youth Link Pushes Forth the Kids Care Coat Drive By Gigi Jirapolchet Bellevue Youth Link has partnered with Bellevue High School’s Fashion Club, to plan this year’s coat drive. This year’s distribution will be a two day event on November 21st and 22nd at the Crossroads Community Center. With an early start on the Coat Drive this year, the members of BHS Fashion Club and the Coat Drive committee plan on collecting over than 3,000 coats, the number received in last year’s coat drive. First organized by Rick Teegarden in 2004, the Kids Care Coat Drive has become a tradition. As a member of the Bellevue Youth Council, Teegarden volunteered at Youth Link’s Teen Closet monthly clothing distribution events. The lack of warm clothing brought to his attention the community’s pressing need for outwear. In response, he started a coat drive at his middle school, which later evolved into the Kids Care Coat Drive. Currently, the donation boxes have been distributed out to most Bellevue School District schools,

community centers, and other various centers. The students involved with this drive are determined to reach their high goals, and hope that the community will help as well by donating new or gently used winter wear. The coat drive has been an ongoing event for seven years now, and it has been successful every year. Schools: -Bellevue High School -Interlake High School -International School -Chinook Middle School -Cherry Crest Elementary School -Jewish Day School -Bellevue Christian School -Lakeside School

Bellevue Youth Trick or Treat for Cans By Alex Tang

On Halloween, thirty members of the Bellevue Youth Council hit Bellevue neighborhoods on the traditional trick or treat night. But this Halloween, the middle and high school students did not ask for sweet treats for themselves, but rather cans of food for the Renewal Food Bank. The Renewal Food Bank, located in the Factoria neighborhood, distributes food for more than 250 local families a week. On Oct. 19, the members of the Bellevue Youth Council, a group of middle and high school students devoted to becoming better leaders in the community, decorated bags to gather non-perishable food as part of their monthly service project, the “Trick or Treat for Cans” food drive. This is only one of many service projects the Youth Council will take part in this year. Such undertakings not only give its members the opportunity to serve their community but also give the community the gift of many capable leaders.


Community Centers: -Bellevue City Hall -North Bellevue -South Bellevue -Highland -Crossroads -Crossroads Mini City Hall -Bellevue Plato’s Closet -Ground Zero Teen Center -Bellevue First Congregational Church -Bel-Red Self Storage

99% Occupies Seattle By Julia Liu The epidemic of Occupy Wallstreet has arrived at Seattle. In this movement, participants are focused on protesting economic and social inequality, and the influence corporations have over the government. “We need the government to act for our interests, not for its own” says a protester in Seattle. “The way the government works, the rich people are getting richer while the 99% are getting less and less money. Where is the equality in that?” Precisely this question led a crowd of people to protest in Westlake Seattle. Near the protest area, signs and tents encourage passersby to join the movement and support the 99%. According to the Federal Reserve, in 2007, the top 1% of wealth

owned 33% of the nation’s wealth and that percentage has only been increasing since then. The growing income gap has sparked a national movement that recently became global, spreading to Europe, Africa,

stated, “This government, founded to protect the people, has only made the income gap worse.” You can support the cause by joining other protestors at Westlake Park or donating via

and Asia. “Right now we’re getting ready for the silent reflection,” said a woman in the Seattle crowd. The organization of events such as the silent reflection, Non-Violence discussions, and work-group meetings provide supporters with specific ways to protest. A diverse crowd of people have come together for a common cause. Men and women of varying ages participate in the nonviolent protests downtown. One politically involved youth

the Occupy Seattle website. To learn information, visit or experience it yourself in downtown Seattle.


NBA Lockout Disappoints Fans By Cody Ng

As basketball fans are aware, the NBA lockout, the result of stalled contract negotiations between the players union and the owners, has resulted in the cancellation of the first few weeks of the baskeball season. The NBA lockout is a hold and other NBA owners cut player on all activities besides negotiasalaries due to loss of revenue. The tions. It was brought about when current lockout between players NBA Commissioner David Stern and owners has put a strain on professional basketball and the season. During the lockout, teams cannot trade, sign or contact players, and players cannot access the faculty. All preseason games and the first two weeks of the 2011–12 season have already been cancelled. Some players have looked overseas for opportunities to play. The

players who have officially signed contracts with overseas teams include Deron Williams, Mehmet Okur, Kenyon Martin, Andrei Kirilenko, and Tony Parker. Other players have resorted to playing locally to benefit the communities. These players include Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant, Dwyane Wade, Lebron James, Russell Westbrook, Derrick Rose, and Brandon Jennings. Many fans, including myself, cannot wait for the season to start - if there will be one. My personal take on this lockout is that both players and owners should just hurry up the process. They already make millions, and do not need to profit more. Furthermore, most of us are sick and tired of waiting and just want our NBA back.

Getting Ready for NaNoWriMo By Rachel Lau

National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) is an exciting, fun and educational experience for all ages! Whether you want to take it easy with a 15,000 word goal or go for a more challenging goal of 50,000 words, you will feel like a winner at the end. The goal of NaNoWriMo is to get you to write. It starts on November 1st and you can write and update your creation onto the website, all the way until November 30th. If you want to sign up for NaNoWriMo this year, simply go to (for adults), or (for those 17 or younger). I am currently a 6th grader and I have already done NaNoWriMo twice - I did 10,000 words in 4th grade and the 20,000 words in 5th grade. I wrote about two characters, Jake and Grace who go on an adventure in which they stay at Grace’s mysterious uncle’s mansion. My story was based on a few books I had read before, a good basis for starting writers. There are also whole columns of advice on writing

from many professional writers on the site. It was a whirlwind of writing. Anyone who likes to write will love this journey. Also, if you meet your word goal, NaNoWriMo can give you a copy of your novel, free of charge! And until May 31st, you will be able to make revisions to your writing. Will you rise to the challenge?


Calling all Climbers! By Alisha Saxena

There is a new branch of Stone Gardens launching right here in Bellevue! The grand opening for Stone Gardens was Saturday, Oct. 22nd. It is located right next to Crossroads Bellevue shopping center. This spacious facility features expansive climbing walls for beginners and professionals alike. Stone Gardens offers climbing lessons for youth as well as adults. There are classes offered for many different styles of climbing, ranging from bouldering to

belaying. The gym is open daily and offers climbing gear for rent. It also has a membership plan for more dedicated climbers. Stone Gardens even hosts birthday parties for young enthusiastic climbers who want to share their love for climbing with friends! Stone Gardens is an exciting new addition to the Bellevue landscape. Be sure to give it a try with friends and family!

Pumpkin Sips Recipe By Rachel Lau

November Elections (Continued from page 1)

Ingredients: (makes eight 2-oz cups) Canned Pumpkin, 1 cup Milk, 3/4 cup Ground Cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon Ground Nutmeg, 1/8 teaspoon Honey, 1 tablespoon Brown Sugar, 1 tablespoon Vanilla Ice Cream, 1 scoop Steps: Mix all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Pour into small sipping cups and serve.

By Bonnie Pan the region, and she makes no secret of that. Mitchell, on the other hand, promises “honesty and integrity in public service. That’s what I intend to bring to this office.” Next, the seven running for Bellevue City Council seats 1, 3, 5, and 7 took the stage. The downtown fire station, the local courthouse, and the annexation in the Eastgate area were each brought up throughout the course of the conversation. Aaron Laing is a young father who calls himself “an empiricist at heart,” committed to “putting the servant back in public service.” John Stokes is a rather serious, owlish figure, with a no-nonsense attitude about

the city’s troubles. John Chelminiak is at ease with the audience, cracking a few jokes here and there, but never without an underlying concern for the wellbeing of Bellevue. Michelle Hilhorst is an ardent volunteer who commits to being “open and accessible” during the four years she would be in office. Claudia Balducci is calm and collected, thinking through her answers thoughtfully and tactfully before delivering smooth responses. Patti Mann is enthusiastic and eager to please, supporting business growth and fiscal responsibility. Finally, Jennifer Robertson, the only candidate running without opposition, promises

to take on budget challenges and fund neighborhood projects. Though I’m not much for politics, and the personal statements were often dry, listening to the forum gave me a better idea of what’s going on in my city. And with the occasional character jabs, carefully veiled insults, running jokes, supportive comments from the audience, I found myself very interested in what the candidates had to say. It imbued a sense of responsibility and pride for Bellevue, even though I’m not of voting age quite yet. Don’t forget to vote on November 8th!


Black Friday By Stephanie Lim As Thanksgiving is quickly approaching, many of us begin to look forward to the upcoming holiday with family gatherings, scrumptious feasts, and of course, Black Friday shopping. In today’s terms, “Black Friday” refers to the day after Thanksgiving, when the holiday shopping season official commences. It is oftentimes associated with the materialistic nature of America culture. However, the origin of the term connotes otherwise. “Black Friday” was coined by the Philadelphia Police Department in 1966 to describe the crowded streets and traffic jams the day after Thanksgiving. Another explanation of the origin of Black Friday derives from an accounting practice. Loss is recorded in red ink and the profit is recorded in black. Thus, “Black Friday” signifies the day retailers become profitable. It is also a term which references to a financial crisis September 24, 1869 when the financial market crashed following a failed attempt by investors to control the gold market. Over the years, as more retailers increase

promotional activities, Black Friday has become the busiest shopping day of the year. Virtually all retailers in the country offer the deepest discounts of the year. Stores are opening earlier and earlier to beat their competitors, and it would not be surprising to find customers camping outside beforehand. The cases of aggression get more and more extreme year after year. So to avoid getting trampled, save yourself some stress and go at a later time to avoid the mobs.

Awaiting the Debut of Pottermore By Emily Jiang

Any loyal fan of the Harry Potter series would have heard of this news by now. For all those Muggles out there who are just beginning to get into it, this is for you. Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling has partnered with Sony to create Pottermore, an interactive website for fans to experience the series they have fallen in love with. The first million fans to complete the Magical Quill challenge on the website starting were granted special access to the website to beta test the features. The site is expected to be open to the public

by late October. Users will be able to participate in online “experiences” from the books, traveling throughout chapters to “follow” Harry along


his adventures. After being sorted into a house (Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff or Slytherin), participants can collect potion ingredients, books, and galleons (wizarding coins), and compete to earn house points, just as Hogwarts students compete for the House Cup every school year. The website also allows users to duel others, create potions, explore Diagon Alley, and learn spells. J.K Rowling herself will be involved in the website as well. Along the way, she will share special information she has been keeping to herself about the world of Harry Potter.

Thanks for Thanksgiving By Noelle Kola We all know about the pilgrims who settled on Plymouth Rock hundreds of years ago and how they shared a magnificent feast with the locals, a Native American tribe. Every year, Americans and Canadians celebrate the bond that was created between the people of the New World and the English settlers. The story of the first Thanksgiving is about the valiant men and women with buckled hats and linen bonnets of England taking a wonderful voyage to escape a really mean king on the luxury ship, the Mayflower. In reality, the tale is not quite that glamorous. In September 1620, a small ship called the Mayflower left Plymouth, England, carrying 102 passengers—an assortment of religious separatists seeking a new home where they could freely practice their faith in the New World. After a treacherous and uncomfortable crossing that lasted 66 days, they dropped anchor near the tip of Cape Cod, far north of their intended destination at the mouth of the Hudson River. One month later, the Mayflower crossed Massachusetts Bay, where the Pilgrims began the work of establishing a village at Plymouth. Throughout the first brutal winter, most of the colonists remained onboard the ship, where they suffered from exposure, scurvy, and outbreaks of contagious disease. Only half of the Mayflower’s original passengers and crew lived to see their first New England spring. In March, the remaining settlers moved ashore, where they received a surprise visit from an Abenaki Indian who greeted them in English. Several days later, he returned with another Native American, Squanto, a member of the Pawtuxet tribe who had been taken hostage by an English sea captain. Squanto taught the Pilgrims, weakened by malnutri-

tion and illness, how to cultivate corn, extract sap from maple trees, catch fish in the rivers and avoid poisonous plants. He also helped the settlers forge an alliance with the Wampanoag, a local tribe, which would remain one of the sole examples of harmony between European colonists and Native Americans. In November 1621, after the Pilgrims’ first corn harvest proved successful, Governor William Bradford organized a celebratory feast and invited a group of the fledgling colony’s Native American allies, including the Wampanoag chief Massasoit. Now remembered as American’s first Thanksgiving, the festival lasted three days. While no record exists of the historic banquet’s exact menu, the Pilgrim chronicler Edward Winslow wrote in his journal that Governor Bradford sent four men on a fowling mission in preparation, and that the Wampanoag guests arrived bearing five deer. Historians have suggested that many of the dishes were likely prepared using traditional Native American spices and cooking methods. Because the Pilgrims had no oven and the Mayflower’s sugar supply had dwindled by the fall of 1621, the meal did not feature pies, cakes or other desserts. In a way, the feast could be considered a “Thanksgiving”, as the Pilgrims were quite grateful to the Native’s for keeping them alive. Now for us, it’s merely a week off of school and time for Mom to cook dinner with no complaints. So next time you heat the oven to 500 degrees and get ready to throw in that turkey, give thanks for the Native Americans who saved the lives of the Pilgrims which in the long run, saved us.


Fiction Section Curtain Closed

Prologue: The Abandonment On the dark streets of London, a shadow lurks ominously, sliding into corners, and crevices. Even the light of the shining snow, piling up on the streets does not touch it. Through the meager light of the weak streetlamps, a couple walks, the woman carrying a small sleeping baby. The shadow leaps unexpectedly and attacks the couple, slitting the man’s throat before he has a chance to fight back. The woman turns and runs, but the shadow follows close behind. Being from a richer part of town, she has no knowledge of the safe houses along the poor streets, and the shadow gains speed. Frantic, she runs past a church, and an orphanage. Blinded by her terror, she runs into a dead end. She turns around. “Who are you? Why have you done this to my family? What did we do?” she screams at the shadow. The shadow moans back, “You killed me.” The woman’s face goes white. Darkness envelopes the alley, and a drawn out shriek pierces the silence, only to be cut short in mere seconds. Introduction: The Story

By Rachel Lau A young boy of four sits on a thick Oriental rug in a room with honey-colored walls. In the corner is a small bed laden with patched pillows. In the center of the room, a rocking chair creaks under the slight weight of a middle-aged man with a slightly messy shave. “Tell me the story of the first time you met me, papa!” the boy begs. “Again?” The man says in mock indignity, his stern gaze softening. “Please?” the child pleads, his dark, saucer-wide eyes glinting. “Okay, my little monkey.” He leads the child to the bed. “If you were there, you would feel the cozy warmth of the merry, jumping fire in the fireplace, smell the spicy scent of gingerbread cookies baking in the oven, and hear the slight whisperings of snow, lightly tumbling down from the frozen sky. “It was a night not unlike this one,” the man begins as the child clambers into bed and pulls the covers up to his chin. “The snow was falling gently. There were few cars on the lonely road,” his voice drifts, but starts up again, like a sputtering engine. “But, out of all the things that are the same, there was something different. On the iced-over steps of the theatre, a baby cried, splitting the quiet twilight. I ventured downstairs, and onto the theatre entrance, and, there you were.” The clear blue eyes of the man meet the young black ones of the boy. Continuing, the man smiles, “You were wrapped up in a small threadbare blanket, barely big enough to cover your tiny toes. I picked you up and carried you into the kitchen, where Mrs. Smith and I made some lukewarm milk and fed you. You fell asleep as I wrapped you in a warm blue blankie.” He pauses as the boy yawns and hugs his blankie, the same pale blue one from the story.” I then took you upstairs, and you slept with me that night.” The young boy smiles, his eyes closing as he drifts off to sleep as his guardian watches over him.


Chapter 2: The First Victim Seth gazed absentmindedly at his watch until it registered that it was already noon—time to get back to the theatre for lunch. “What? It’s that late already?” He said loudly. Then, when everyone turned and shushed him, he bent down and bundled his books into his book bag. He ran outside and hopped onto his bike, slinging his book bag over his shoulder. Even before hearing the sirens, he knew something was wrong. He had that sinking feeling. When he arrived at the back entrance, he left his book bag in a compartment under the stairs and locked his bicycle onto the railing. He ran to the front to find “Let’s do it again, and remember to lift your arms! the place swarming with policemen. As he thought A five, six, seven, eight!” A male voice shouts. about getting through the thick crowd, a path parted Seth, in his gray sweatpants and white t-shirt has through the sea of people. He charged through, just arrived, but he knows the dance well and jumps right in, his leg extending toward his head, toe point- heart pounding when he arrived at the wall of police around the circle of yellow tape. ed. Others always said that he really didn’t need the “What are you doing here? You aren’t allowed practice, but he did anyways. Also, he didn’t want Dad in!” the young police officer told him firmly. Seth to think that he was slacking off. Step, step, step, jump, step-bolchange. After they went swiftly thought, Yes I am. Move away from the yellow tape. The officer moved aside, a blank look sweepthrough the dance multiple times, choreographer Eli ing over his features. Seth ducked under the yellow Smith called for a break, “Take ten!” tape, swaggering over to his adoptive father, Adward He then walked off, towel on shoulder and water Normeth. bottle in hand. Like every day, Seth longed to go to “What’s up?” Seth asked nonchalantly. the library instead of practice. He ran up to Eli, about “What’s up? What is up?” Adward Normath to ask, but, automatically, Eli nodded. Happily, he shouted as if it were the most alien phrase he had grabbed his books and ran off to the library. Outside the Theatre, he took a deep breath, savor- ever heard. “I’ll tell you what’s up! There’s a murderer running loose and I couldn’t find you! Where were ing the cool autumn air. Hopping on his neon green bicycle, he pedaled out onto the street. His black hair you?” “I was at the library…” Seth said, bending his poked out of his helmet at funny angles as he gained head. speed, the wind tearing his breath away. If only he “And you didn’t see my text?” Normath quesknew what would be in store for him when he got tioned, searching for a lie. back, he wouldn’t have left. “I forgot it here.” Seth answered carefully. He had found that short words were good in arguments. Normath sighed and his face suddenly fell, looking suddenly like an old man’s, “Well, then, I guess you should know what happened…” Dad led him to behind the concession stand and pointed at the floor. On the floor, lying in a pool of his own blood lay Eli Smith. It was obvious what had killed him--a knife was stuck in his chest. Chapter 1: The Theatre Sunlight filters through the trees and onto a teenage boy’s sharply angled face. A grandmotherly woman pushes open the door with a wrinkled hand. “Wake up, my sunshine!” the woman says, her eyes twinkling. The boy rubs his eyes sleepily and sits up, smiling at the bent figure in the doorway. “Good morning, Mrs. Smith.” the boy grunted. “Now you get up, Seth! Dance call’s in five minutes!” “Five minutes?” Seth popped out of bed, and sprinted to the bathroom.

To Be Continued


Concert Corner! By Alisha Saxena Here’s a look at the hottest concerts through the end of 2011: 1. Nov 4/5—Kathy Griffin at the Paramount Theater in Seattle »» Watch this Emmy Award-winning television personality and comedian take the stage live with hilarious stories. 2. Nov 9—Michael Jackson THE IMMORTAL World Tour by Cirque du Soleil in Key Arena »» Come watch this unique production combining Michael Jackson music and Cirque du Soleil choreography! 3. Dec 5/6—Sting at Paramount Theater in Seattle »» Enjoy the full Sting experience when you attend his “Back to Bass” concert, featuring timeless hits such as “Fields of Gold.” 4. Dec 16—Jay-Z with Kanye West at Tacoma Dome »» “Watch The Throne Tour” featuring Kanye West and Jay-Z performing songs from their collaborative album, “Watch The Throne.” 5. Dec 17—Tony Bennett at Paramount Theater in Seattle »» Tony Bennett, a classic pop artist, is coming to town with an exciting concert to entertain old and young listeners alike. 6. Dec 18—Jingle Bell Bash at WaMu Theater »» An annual event hosted by KISS FM, this exciting holiday concert is a huge hit every year.

About Youth Connection “Youth Connection” is an extension of Bellevue Youth Link, a youth leadership program that strives to give youth an active voice in the community and an opportunity to make a difference!

More about Bellevue Youth Link Bellevue Youth Link is sponsored by the City of Bellevue, Parks & Community Service Department, WA, USA and Bellevue Public Schools. Youth Link consists of the Youth Link Board, the Youth Council, and nine or 10 Action Teams. The Youth Link Board advises the Bellevue City Council and City Manager on youth matters and programs. The Youth Council is the main organizational body of Bellevue Youth Link which meets twice a month to plan various community projects. The council meets to discuss current and future Youth Link projects, hear updates from the action teams, and share local events in school and the community. The council also hears presentations from guest speakers about events in the community and local government, and is responsible for planning monthly service projects.


Staff 2011-2012 Editor-in-Chief Lucinda Li Layout: Lucinda Li Julia Liu Cody Ng Alisha Saxena Journalists: Emily Jiang Gigi Jirapolchet Noelle Kola Rachel Lau Lucinda Li Stephanie Lim Julia Liu Cody Ng Bonnie Pan Alisha Saxena Alex Tang City of Bellevue Staff: Helena Stephens Family, Youth & Teen Services Patrick Alina Youth Link Coordinator Gunilla Roslander Youth Link Volunteer To learn more about our Youth Link Program, please visit our web site at or call our office at (425) 4525254.

City of Bellevue - Youth Link. PO Box 90012, Bellevue WA 90012 - Tel: 425-452-5254

Youth Connection - Nov 2011  

This issue of Youth Connection features the King County Elections, Bellevue Youth Link's Kids Care Coat Drive, Occupy Seattle, and more.

Youth Connection - Nov 2011  

This issue of Youth Connection features the King County Elections, Bellevue Youth Link's Kids Care Coat Drive, Occupy Seattle, and more.