Monday, June 12, 2017

Local Ideas For A Fun Summer

Written by: Brandon Drapeau 

There is a week left of school and summer is right around the corner. One of my biggest problems is that I am so excited for the summer, but when it comes around I always end up home never knowing what to do with myself. So now I am taking time to think of things to do this summer and sharing them with my peers, these are not in any specific order.

1. Go Bowling!

Lucky for us, we have a perfectly well-functioning bowling alley right in the town center. You can go with some friends, bowl, a game, and maybe grab some dinner at one of the many surrounding restaurants.

2. Play Spikeball!

The best way I can describe what Spikeball is, is that it is 2 versus 2 volleyball condensed down onto a trampoline. In volleyball, you hit the ball over the net, but in Spikeball you bounce the ball off the trampoline. The twist is, you can hit the ball in any direction, so make sure you rotate with your partner to keep the ball alive. There are many beaches around Sparta, so finding a place to play will not be hard. Last year, me and 3 pals played on the beach for 6 hours and I ended up getting horrible sun burn, but it was well worth it.

3. Go To The Boardwalk/Playground!

While this may seem boring, believe it or not, spending a day at the boardwalk can be a lot of fun because you may see a lot of people you know and they have a pizza and ice cream locations within 100 feet of each other. Chances are, you have probably already done this so it's nothing new to you, but it's always a hit.

4. Go Down The Shore!

Yes, I know most of you reading this can’t just go to the shore, they have to plan it and mostly likely stay somewhere with a parent, but it is very fun and something to spend time at during your summer (and it’s also a great place to play a competitive game of spikeball.)

5. Go To Mountain Creek!

Last year I bought a season pass to Mountain Creek and I didn’t use it as much as I should’ve. It has a lot of fun water rides and very large wave pool to cool off. My most favorite thing to do was the cliff jump. It’s very thrilling, but with our next option, there is a free version of this.

6. Go Bridge Jumping!

I AM NOT TELLING YOU TO DO THIS! I am just shedding light on a possible activity you can participate in, if you so choose. The bridge is about 15 feet above the water and is so much fun to jump off and land in the refreshing lake, not that I have tried it or anything! You can climb up the side of the bridge and do it for hours... if you don’t get caught. Be careful if you do choose to do this, and again, I am not telling you to if you get caught by the security or boat police.

This is a short and simple list of things I thought you could use to make your summer a little bit more fun. During the summer, have fun, and enjoy yourself, and make sure to apply sunblock. Can’t wait till next school year where I will write about what I did over the summer!

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

The True Diary of Freshman Year

Written by: Kanita Tariq 

I’ll be honest- freshman year was hard. 

Whether it was the boatload of assignments I put off until the last possible minute, or the uncertainty of who I could or couldn’t trust, my freshman year was a big learning experience for the next three years of high school. 

I was excited about starting high school. Finally- I was a grown-up. I felt independent, smarter, and a whole lot cooler. My whole life, I’d watch high schoolers on T.V. looking so cool as they smoothly navigated their way through, with an army of friends and supporters behind them. 

This was not my reality. In the real world, I had to deal with deadlines, quarterlies, as well as the struggle of maintaining a social life in between. I was tossed into the realm of Google and its helpful resources, along with a string of technical difficulties that often outweighed the good. I attempted to push away the horrific reminders of final exams, which is not something I can forget about anymore. 

I thought I could steer clear of the drama that came along with the transition of high school. As frivolous as my issues seemed, they meant the entire world to me. People changed. I changed. With a hectic end to the year, I found myself saying goodbye to some old friends. That doesn’t mean anyone’s a villain- it just means that some relationships aren’t meant to make it past middle school. 

It wasn’t all as gloomy as I’m making it seem. I solidified some old friendships, made new ones, and maintained good grades (for now… fourth marking period isn’t over yet!). I met some teachers that changed my life forever. 

The biggest takeaway was that I learned. Not just about the makeup of an organism or Napoleon’s rise to power, but about how to treat people, how to make a difference in the world, and how to be the best person I could ever possibly be. So while I cringe at the thought of setting my alarm for 5:30 A.M. every morning for another three years, or the big, bad final exams I have to face in just a few weeks, I can rest with the thought that I can walk away with a better heart and a better mind.