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In the state of Pennsylvania, there are about 219,300 children, between the ages of six and 21, who have a disability. Of those 219,300 children, 3,304 of them have been diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (source).
Autism’s growing commonality in children is why Autism Awareness month was created. Throughout the month of April, people across the world are encouraged to raise awareness by wearing blue and rallying support for families who are personally affected by Autism every day.
Local organization, Autism York, celebrates Autism Awareness Month with their annual event, the Autism Expo and Walk, which is held at Central York High School. The event hosts several educational booths where guests can enjoy a raffle, food vendors, bounce houses for kids, Autism information booths and a fundraiser in which teams raise money by walking around the gymnasium track.
Dresses dominate the Student Council storage room at Red Lion Area Senior High School. Dozens of cardboard boxes overflowing with lace, sequins, tulle, and satin are stacked on top of each other throughout the room. Every color of the rainbow is represented in the hundreds of dresses. Clothes, racks, and boxes of hangers are also stashed in the storage room, ready for the second annual formal fashion fair at the high school.
Annually, York Catholic hosts a competitive speech contest to celebrate the power of the written word. Finalists perform speeches in front of the entire student body. Many students create their own original speeches, like brother and sister Brian and Lauren Hand.
Although some students might loathe public speaking, the Hands relish the opportunity to speak in front of the student body.
“The opportunity to speak and share a voice with the entire student body through the speech festival is a fantastic opportunity that I greatly appreciate,” Brian Hand said.
“The speech contest is a great opportunity for students who want a chance to try out their voices and share what they have to say with their peers,” said Lauren Hand.
Nerves often get in the way of good public speaking, but the Hands say taking a deep breath usually helps.
“I always get nervous, even when I get up to speak just for my English class. But I shake it out before I go on, take a deep breath, and then let it go,” said Lauren on presenting speeches.
“While presenting my speech to the student body my nerves strangely became inexistant. Waiting back stage on the other hand was very nerve racking, but after I began to speak, the words just flowed and I didn’t feel at all nervous or nauseous. Having friends in the audience and backstage was a tremendous factor for that as well. Quite frankly I don’t remember half of it,” said Brian on speaking at the speech contest.
The Hands hold a legacy at York Catholic for placing in the speech finals. How do they write such fantastic speeches?
“I pray that I can think of a good topic and then when I do, I see how far I can possibly take it and then evaluate its potential,” said Brian.
“I never really know where they’re going to come from. I try to think of something that’s relevant to my life and then put my own spin on it. Freshman year that was the challenges of being a ginger, this year it was the challenge of writing a job resume! Usually I work on a few ideas and then pick one to use,” said Lauren.
Brian, a freshman, won third place in the speech contest for his original story about a boy and his love of Goldfish (no not the fish, but the beloved snack cracker).
We all know the feeling, seeing our March Madness bracket fall apart because of a Cinderella team or Duke choking to a 14 seed like Mercer last year. If you did enter a bracket in ESPN’s Bracket Challenge you were one of 11.57 million people. If you didn’t submit one you saved yourself stress and frustration.
Even the four play-in games has a great deal of competition. The average point differential in the four play-in games was just under five points. The first round of games offered excitement as well as shock to some teams like it usually does. With upsets such as Georgia State over Baylor and University of Alabama Birmingham’s win over Iowa State, some people may think it’s impossible to get a perfect bracket. Well your chances are actually one in 9.2 quintillion according to ESPN. It’s never been done before since the tournament was created in 1939. According to ESPN, the tournament in 1939 began with just eight teams, but has expanded to 68 teams. In 2011, the field of play was expanded from 64 to 68 teams to offer a more entertaining experience for fans and boost revenue for the four extra teams.
Under the new rules the last four teams in would have a game before the round of 64 to play in. The winner would go on to play in the round of 64 and the loser would be eliminated from the tournament. In the past three years there have only been three teams that have advanced past the round of 64. The team with the most success that had to play-in was Virginia Commonwealth University or better known as VCU. The Rams made it to the final four in 2011 but fell to Butler in the opening game of the 2011 Final Four. The Rams run in the tournament was one for the history books after beating Kansas, the number one seed in their region. The Rams won by 10 points to move on to the Final Four.
As of 5:55 p.m. Friday March 20 ESPN reported there were only 32 perfect brackets left of the 11.57 million entered in the Tournament Challenge. There were 273 perfect brackets left entering Friday morning. Then after plenty of close games Friday evening there was just one perfect bracket left going into Saturday. One of Central York High School’s students, Tommy O’Neill, was among the top 275 brackets entered of the 11.57 million entered to ESPN. O’Neill got just one of the 16 games incorrect the first day. When asked about his strategy for March Madness O’Neill said, “I just go with my gut and hope I get it right.”
Beginning in March of 2016, the SAT test will have undergone major redesign changes. Not only will this affect the material on the test, but it will change the scoring system as well.
The redesigned SAT test will feature eight new concepts (Information found from the College Board website).
Video by York Catholic’s Kenneth Clouser, class of 2015.
York Catholic’s Mini Thon, held on Mar. 7, raised more than $14,000 for the Four Diamonds Fund. The Mini Thon is a benefit to raise money for pediatric cancer research. The Thon is held as a celebration of the money raised and involves literally taking a stand for the kids (or FTK for short). Many York County schools hold Mini Thons (For a complete list of Mini Thons in your area, check out the link here) and it really brings a sense of unity to the student body for a good cause.
“Mini Thon was a wonderful time. Everyone really banded together. We did it for the kids,” said Catherine Doyle, a senior at York Catholic.
Various activities kept the student body entertained as they stood for six hours in solidarity. Students were able to try Zumba for the first time and have fun dancing with their peers.
“It was really fun dancing and trying out Zumba,” said Kelsea Dvorak.
A Family Feud style game show was held in the auditorium to show off student’s knowledge about YC. Some questions included, “What is the most popular lunch item at YC? Who is the best dressed teacher? What are YC student’s favorite subjects?”
“I liked that we had Family Feud. It was new this year, very competitive but fun,” said Cassie Moore.
The Central York varsity boys basketball team has had success this past season. The Panthers won 63-47 over the Exeter Township Eagles Feb. 18. This win by the Panthers and a win by York High over Hershey brought the same two teams together to play again Feb. 21 at 10:00 a.m.. These two teams played for the York-Adams League Championship. Central York and York High split the regular season series 1-1.
In the regular season, York High sat atop YAIAA Division One with a 21-4 regular season record overall and an 11-1 record in division with their lone loss coming to the Panthers. The second place team in YAIAA Division One was Central York with an 18-7 accumulative record and a 10-2 record against division opponents.
The Panthers played close with the Bearcats in their most recent game on Feb. 13 at York College. They still fell short because of a late game run led by Trey Shifflett and Jahaire Wilson of York High. In York High’s game versus Hershey they needed another late game comeback to cut the deficit and ultimately win to move on and play the Panthers once again. The Bearcats won 68-54 over Hershey in a game Wednesday February 18. The high scorers for York High were Jahaire Wilson with 19 points and Trey Shifflett with 18 points.
With Central York being the six seed in the PIAA county tournament they started the tournament of by playing Exeter Township. After winning and moving on to the next round they faced the York High Bearcats but lost 71-47. With the loss to the Bearcats the Panthers will face the loser of Cedar Cliff and Northeastern in a consolation game Feb. 24 held at Northern York High School at 7:30 p.m.. This shouldn’t be unfamiliar territory for Central students and returning players. Last season, the Panthers made a tournament run but fell short losing 49-47 to Cedar Crest in the tournament semifinal that would’ve given them a spot in the 2014 District 3 Class AAAA M&T Bank Boys’ Basketball Tournament. Cedar Crest went on to win their first round game versus Spring-Ford with a score of 66-52. In the following round they lost 49-43 to La Salle who earned runner-up of the tournament. Even though the Panthers lost to the Bearcats this past Saturday they still seeded in the state wide tournament.
To the cast and crew of “Tarzan the Musical” at the Red Lion Area Senior High School, March Madness does not mean basketball, it means their long-awaited performances. The cast has been practicing since January for these performances.
The show, which debuted for the first time in York County on March 6 at the Red Lion Area Senior High School.
The musical is based on the popular Disney movie “Tarzan” which follows the story of a human boy who was raised by a family of apes in the jungle.
“It is not a traditional musical.” said Hannah Kirsch, a junior at Red Lion and a part of the ensemble for the musical. “When you ask someone about musicals, they think of something like ‘Grease,’ not ‘Tarzan.’”
This musical has set many precedents in the Red Lion theater. According to Allyson Ayres, the musical producer, this is the first year that Tarzan has been performed in a high school in all of York County. Also, this is the first time that Red Lion is having cast fly.
The stage crew, led by senior Logan Arnold, has been working hard to maintain the three new flying systems that were installed this year.
“We have to make sure that we have the flying down flat,” Arnold said.
Allison Thomas, the junior who plays the leading lady Jane, has enjoyed her experience with the musical. She participates in show choir, mixed chorus, and concert choir at Red Lion. She also has a passion for acting and “Tarzan” is her thirteenth production. She is excited to have a lead role.
“I get the chance to experience having a lead role and to get out of the shell I didn’t know I have,” Thomas said.
She is also enjoying the chance to spend time with the rest of the cast.
“I try to have at least one bonding moment with everyone on the cast. I like to think of the musical cast as a mini family,” Thomas said.
The cast is made up of over one hundred students from the high school, junior high school, and elementary schools in Red Lion. The cast of apes includes students of all ages, in fact some younger students also have lead roles. Sarah Foess, a seventh grader from the junior high, played young Terk in the musical. Young Tarzan was also portrayed by Justin Danner, a second grader, and Duncan McQueen, a fifth grader.
The last day to see the show is Saturday with two shows, one at 2:00 p.m. and an encore at 7:00 p.m. Tickets can be bought at the door.