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Snow Forts

By: Gabby LeBron

I dressed for winter,

a long trench coat covering my

little ankles, a wool hat

over my ears 

to keep out the aches

I never knew you had skin

under that thick sweatshirt

In fact, through squinting eyes

one may even say 

there was no difference

I knew better, I think.

I learned your song

quicker than I’d like to confess

I read your book 

deep. and cried for you

before I knew why

So what I’m trying to say,

my love,

is that I dressed for winter

In thick skin and knitted scarves

I dressed for ice and hail,

sleet and snow

Never knowing that we would be

warm enough together,

and summer would come

like sinking into molasses

There was no reason to hide,

was there?

Fall Sports: Upcoming Games, Current Records, and Student Section Themes

By: Colleen Bailey

           Within the first five weeks of school, eight sports have already begun their fall seasons. From football to gymnastics, I’ve got you covered with the next games, matches, and meets.

Football

Football is America’s favorite sport, which is reflected by the mere size of the coaching staff here at Cary. There are more coaches for this sport alone than the gymnastics and tennis rosters combined! Our Cary High football team has managed to start the season with a 2-2 record. The next home game is against Apex on September 29th; be sure to wear your best stars and stripes. Also, take note that captains Andy Kudlak, Nathan Cowles, Rylan Vann, Tyrik Bryant, and Sam Grena will be leading the football team on October 15th against Apex Friendship for the 2021-2022 Homecoming game. If you happen to catch a JV football game, keep an eye out for #26, Alpha Dominguez, the female running back for Cary who plays football and wrestles during the winter season.

Volleyball

Cary volleyball has begun the season with three wins and seven losses. Captains Alex Pierce and Kristen Schroeter are looking to lead the Imps to their fourth win of the season at home against Panther Creek on September 21st; show up wearing green and white. Also, mark your calendars for October 19th when the Imps play Middle Creek on Senior Night; the student section theme for that night is “Senior Citizen”.  

Cheerleading

           You can watch the cheerleaders perform during football games and later this year for men’s basketball. The eleven-person team cheers at Cary athletic events while also having a competition and stunt season. Beginning soon, the team will be fundraising for new uniforms, competition music, pom poms, and much more. To raise money, current Cary cheerleaders will be teaching younger kids how to cheer.

Women’s Tennis

           The eight-person tennis team takes on Middle Creek on September 20th at 3:30. The tennis team plays all their matches away from home because they don’t have a home court to host other schools. Captain Caroline Ford is hoping to lead the team to their second win of the season this Monday against Green Level. Sophomore Brianna Viets is 4-0 individually; her winning record led her to the state semifinals last year, which is quite a feat for an underclassman.

Gymnastics

           Yes, we have a gymnastics team! Consisting of five members, Cary’s gymnastics team has beat out tennis for the smallest sport. Their next meet is on October 9th at the Raleigh School of Gymnastics where they are competing against nineteen other schools from the Raleigh metropolitan area. This will be their first of four meets, all of which are on Saturdays throughout September, October, and November.

Men’s Soccer

           Starting the season with a 3-3-1 record, men’s soccer is already one-third of the way through their regular season. The team is captained by JP Keen and Will McIntyre; the former scored a fifty-yard goal in a recent game against Fuquay-Varina. Also on the team is Tad Thornton, who serves not only as the men’s soccer goalie but also as the varsity football specialist, both punting and kicking off the game. The next match is on September 20th at Holly Springs. Be there at 6:15 to cheer the Imps on against the Hawks.

Cross Country

At cross country meets, Cary athletes run a total of 3.1 miles and compete against multiple schools simultaneously. The women’s team is led by sophomore Emma Elkan, and junior, Abby Corn, who has helped the team finish third and fourth at local meets. The men’s team has placed second, fourth, and fourth again at local meets. Season records are currently held by Emma Elkan with a 20:46:20 time and Matthew Martin with a 16:53:30 time. Their next meet is the Greensboro XC Invitational on September 25th at Hagan-Stone Park.

Student Section Themes

Football
Cary vs.DateTimeWhereTheme
D.H. Conley8/277 pmHomeJersey
Scotland9/57 pmAwayBlack Out
Green Level9/177 pmHomeHawaiian
Apex9/297 pmHomeUSA
Holly Springs10/17 pmAwayPink Out
Green Hope10/87 pmAwayWestern
Apex Friendship10/157 pmHomeGreen and White
Panther Creek10/227 pmHomeWhite Out
Volleyball
Cary vs.DateTimeTheme
Green Level9/25 pmUSA
Apex9/76 pmNeon
Apex Friendship9/166 pmTie-Dye
Panther Creek9/216 pmGreen and White
Fuquay Varina9/276 pmCamoufl-age
Holly Springs10/56 pmPink Out
Green Hope10/76 pmBlack Out
Middle Creek10/196 pmSenior Citizen
All volleyball games with student section themes are at home.

The Color of Words

By: Chloe Wilson

Why do we color our words,

The same way we color the sky above us,

And the grass below?

Why do we think it’s our job

To place importance upon colors 

We do not own,

Colors upon cultures we do not understand?

Why is the white deemed innately successful, 

While the black is uncouth and loud?

Why is the pale yellow the erudite,

While the brown is stubborn and bold?

Do we subconsciously connotate words based off experience,

Or fear, or the impending norm?

Why do we willingly submit to these belittling words?

To these small minded meanings?

When we as a multitude of colors equate to so much more? 

A rainbow is diverse. 

A rainbow holds power, 

Power of the successful, the loud, the erudite, and the bold.

Because alone, a hue stands as nothing against a rainbow.

Alone a single word stands nothing against our colors. 

Stands nothing against who we are, and what we can do. 

Because as a people we are no single color, no single word.

Because we as a people are so much more,

We are us. 

Florida Judge Calls for Immediate Lifting of Gov. DeSantis’ Mask Mandate Ban

By: Charley Gilewicz 

On Wednesday, September 8th, a Florida judge ruled that Florida must immediately stop enforcing Gov. Ron DeSantis’ ban on school mask mandates.

Florida schools reopened for full in-person learning last month, and consequently, the state saw a spike in Delta Variant cases, which in turn caused more hospitalizations and deaths daily.

DeSantis signed an executive order on July 30th, which stated that “masking children may lead to negative health and social ramifications” and allowed the parents to decide if they want their children to wear masks or not.

Many districts in Florida have defied this, creating mask mandates with an opt-out strictly for medical reasons. DeSantis then threatened to withhold teacher salaries and school funding from the districts that enforced wearing masks.

Leon County Circuit Judge John C. Cooper mentioned that the Centers for Disease Control and Protection recommends students and staff to wear masks, saying that it’s the “gold standard.”

“We are not in normal times. We are in a pandemic. We have children that can’t be protected by vaccination,” Cooper said in court. “Children are at risk and they [masks] provide at least some protection by masking [the virus].” The FDA currently has not approved a vaccine for children 12 and under.

This ruling didn’t occur without any pushback, however, as Florida filed an appeal within hours, seeking to reinstate a stay as the court decides what their final decision will be.

Cooper’s ruling Wednesday currently allows school districts freedom to require masks for students and staff. Cooper says it’s unusual to lift the stay during an appeal, but, after all, “we are not in normal times.” 

Justice Department Sues Texas Over Restrictive Abortion Ban

By: Gabby LeBron

On the first of September, Texas passed a rigid law, titled Senate Bill 8, banning most abortions in the state. This law prohibits any abortions after doctors detect a fetal heartbeat, which usually occurs at about six weeks of pregnancy. Senate Bill 8 has been the most restrictive American abortion law passed since the 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision, which famously ruled strict abortion laws to be unconstitutional. 

S.B. 8 also allows any private citizen to bring civil lawsuits against a pregnant woman found guilty of seeking an abortion. The law provides an incentive of $10,000 awarded to those successful at the end of the lawsuit. Any private citizen, including family members, neighbors, Uber drivers, or abortion clinic staff, can accuse a pregnant woman of seeking an illegal abortion. This also extends to citizens outside of the state of Texas. The law does include an exemption for medical emergencies, but nothing for other extenuating circumstances such as incest or rape. 

For abortion opposers, this has been a long-awaited victory; Republican Governor Greg Abbott stated that the law “​ensures that the life of every unborn child who has a heartbeat will be saved from the ravages of abortion.” However, the law has been met with criticism from Democrats who argue that at the six-week mark most women are unaware they are even pregnant. This leaves little opportunity for them to seek out safe abortions. For these reasons, Democrats and women’s health activists have been putting increased pressure on Democratic President Joe Biden to take action against the bill since its enactment. 

On Wednesday, President Biden called Senate Bill 8 “an unprecedented assault on a woman’s constitutional rights under Roe v. Wade” and stated that, “the Texas law will significantly impair women’s access to the health care they need, particularly for communities of color and individuals with low incomes”. According to Texas health data, 30% of all abortions performed in 2020 were for Black patients despite the fact that only 12% of the state population is Black. Hispanic women, who had the highest percentages of abortions in Texas last year, may be unfairly targeted by the law as well. On Thursday, the Biden Justice Department sued Texas, claiming that S.B. 8 “illegally interferes with federal interests.”

The legal challenges between Texas and the Biden administration could continue for the foreseeable future. In the meantime, the Texas bill has encouraged Republican lawmakers to enact similar abortion bans in their states. S.B. 8 has started a larger conversation on women’s health and rights to abortion throughout the entire country that will likely not end anytime soon. 

Jump Into Fall with These Seasonal Menu Items

By: Gabby LeBron

Fall is just around the corner! Though the North Carolina heat may be deceiving, it’s time to start looking forward to Friday night lights, hot apple cider and plenty of Halloween movies! If you haven’t been able to get into the fall spirit quite yet, these delicious seasonal menu items from local businesses are sure to put you right in the mood. 

Starbucks Coffee – Everyone knows Starbucks’ famous Pumpkin Spice Latte, but did you know about any of their other fall menu items? Try out the Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew or Apple Crisp Macchiato one day this fall. After all, a perfect way to start a school day is with a trip to the Harris Teeter Starbucks. 

Caribou Coffee – If Starbucks isn’t your cup of tea, Caribou is a great alternative. This fall they have their own version of a Pumpkin Latte and a refreshing Apple Blast, their take on an iced apple cider. Check them out – they’re right off of Maynard. 

Duck Donuts – Duck Donuts did not disappoint with their fall menu options this year. Their fall donut assortment features pumpkin streusel, french toast, maple bacon, apple pie, and more. Get the full dozen in the assortment for $16 or a single donut for $2. 

Krispy Kreme – For those of you who prefer Krispy Kreme over cake donuts, head downtown to try their new Pumpkin Spice and Cinnamon Apple donuts. 

Dairy Queen – Wanting to cool off with some ice cream instead? Dairy Queen has two new blizzards this month that are perfect for fall: Pumpkin Pie and Pecan Pie. And if blizzards aren’t for you, they also have a Pumpkin Cookie Butter shake. Yum!

Andia’s Homemade Ice Cream – If you haven’t been to Andia’s yet, you’re missing out! Their newest location is conveniently located just across the street from our school. This month they have a Pumpkin Spice Latte Milkshake, complete with whipped cream and two cookies on top. If that’s not the thing for you, they have new seasonal items at the beginning of every month available  to try. 

Bath and Body Works – Would it even be fall without seasonal candles in every room? Bath and Body Works has brought back your favorite autumn fragrances: Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin, Leaves, Blueberry Maple Pancakes, Flannel, and so many more. Really – there are so many options so there’s something for everyone!

A Summer Bucket List for When You Get Bored

By: Lelani Williamson and Regan Sumy

Summer break is right around the corner (only 10 more school days!), and I’m sure everyone is ready to have an eventful summer so as to make up for last year. Here’s some ideas of things to do if you get bored over break:

Go to an amusement park:

At places like Adventure Landing and Frankie’s you’ll have a variety of activities like go-karting, mini golf, and arcade games to keep you entertained. With some friends, you could spend hours having fun at these nearby places. Not too far out (in Charlotte) is Carowinds, where you can ride large roller coasters and get the full amusement park experience.  

Take a beach trip

The beach is one of the best parts of summer. The cool water and sand make it the ideal summer destination. With all the beaches in North Carolina — such as Carolina Beach, Emerald Isle, Wilmington Beach, Wrightsville Beach, Sunset Beach, Myrtle Beach, and more — taking a day or even week trip to the beach could be a lively experience. 

Go to a water park

Hot summer days will leave you wanting nothing more than to get soaked in some cool water. As the pool once again begins to become a routine destination, try out places like Wet ‘n Wild Water Park at Emerald Pointe, White Lake Water Park, Jungle Rapids Family Fun Park, or Murrow Waves Water Park for a more exciting water experience. These water parks have large slides, lazy pools, and normal pools for you to swim in. If you want to take an overnight trip try out Great Wolf Lodge in Charlotte or Concord, you can enjoy a water park that comes with many other great amenities. 

Camp in your backyard

If you don’t want to go far from your house but still want to get outside, try camping in your backyard with some friends. You can set up tents, have a campfire, and make s’mores while telling creepy stories — just like they do in the movies! I would definitely recommend bug spray, but it could be an eventful and memorable activity to do with some friends or family. 

Have a picnic

 With all the nice parks in the area, making a meal and having a picnic could be an easy and relaxing thing to do over summer. You could try making a new recipe, creating a cool refreshing drink, or even put together a tasty charcuterie board. 

Read a book!

Now I know this may sound boring like summer homework, but finding a good book to read can be super relaxing and fun pastime for all the free time you’ll have over summer break. There are so many genres and writing styles to choose from, so there is surely a book for everyone! I’m sure if you try, you could begin to love books this summer. 

Watch a outdoor movie

Since the weather is so good over the summer, why not go outside to watch a movie to get a change of scenery? At the Raleigh Road Outdoor Theater you can drive up and watch whatever movie they have playing that night. Bring snacks, a blanket, and your friends to make this an enjoyable experience. Another option would just be to set up a movie in your backyard. Invite your friends or family and it might feel just like a movie theater at home. 

Pick strawberries

Once it’s the season, places like Hunt’s Strawberries and Page Farms become an activity worth your while. At these strawberry farms, you can go around and pick your own fresh strawberries to wash and eat later. It’s super fun and the strawberries are like none you’ve ever had before!

Other ideas include: 

  • Go for a hike/walk
  • Go thrifting
  • Have (or visit) a yard sale
  • Visit a cat cafe. These are literally the best ever! If you like cats, of course. My favorite local cat cafe is Purr Cup Cafe — they have some amazingly cute cats and brilliant coffee.
  • Go to the farmer’s market or support local shops 
  • Go for a bike ride
  • Stargaze
  • Have a mini-photoshoot 
  • Have a game night 
  • Volunteer somewhere (Foodbank, ASPCA, etc.)
  • Go downtown
  • Adopt a plant or start a garden
  • Catch (and then release!!) fireflies 
  • Make the ultimate summer playlist 
  • Watch the sunset or sunrise
  • Do a spa day 
  • Go shopping (or window shopping if you don’t want to spend money!)
  • Write a story 
  • Go to the library 
  • Have a water balloon fight or do something outside with water
  • Build a fort
  • Go swimming 
  • Write and send a letter to someone

Have a wonderful summer everyone!

After 17 Years, Brood X is Emerging Across the East Coast

By: Alexis Cope

For the first time in nearly two decades, a horde of billions of cicadas, labeled “Brood X”, has emerged and swarmed areas of the northeast. 

These insects, called periodical cicadas, live 13 or 17 year life cycles, most of which is spent underground eating roots and other plants. In the last months of their lives, the cicadas will emerge, shed out of their juvenile skin, and begin searching for a mate. That droning buzzing sound you often associate with cicadas is, in fact, the males issuing their mating calls. 

While Brood X is only going to swarm in states like Pennsylvania, Indiana, Ohio, and West Virginia, other periodical cicadas exist across nearly every eastern state. Residents of the afflicted states this year have catalogued the cicadas’ takeover; many have shared images of cicadas crawling over their faces, the ground, and jars full of collected cicada shells. Some have even begun posting recipes online for such delicacies as chocolate covered cicadas for anyone who feels like a forager at heart.

Victory Urbanstead, via Instagram

At the moment, there are a dozen periodical cicada broods on the 17-year cycle, such as Brood X, and three broods on a 13-year cycle. Brood X is the only brood which will emerge this year; the next time these cicadas will appear is 2024, when Brood XIII,  a 17-year cicada, and Brood XIX, a 13-year cicada, emerge. Brood XIX will appear in several areas in North Carolina, including Wake County. 

Periodical cicadas in the U.S., U.S. FOREST SERVICE

These periodical cicadas typically only live above ground for four to six weeks, so if you want to witness this incredible phenomenon in the wild, take a road trip up to West Virginia soon. Me, though, I’ll be staying home where I don’t have to hear the racket of those creepy-crawlies covering nearly every surface.

My Favorite Healthy Ways to Get Your Starbucks Fix

By: Kiera Kofkin-Hansen

I grew up hating being basic, but then I moved to America and discovered Starbucks! Junior year taught me that coffee is an essential, but I sadly learned that some of the best Starbucks has to offer comes at a high price–both figuratively and literally. Over the past few months, I’ve been researching–and taste-testing of course–the healthiest ways to satisfy my ever-lasting Starbucks cravings, and I’m here to share. 

Nutella Iced Coffee

I love chocolate, but I love Nutella most of all; I started drinking a Nutella Iced Coffee at Starbucks, and it instantly rose to the top of my list of favorite food/drinks. It’s not overwhelmingly sweet, yet definitely has that nutella flavor I long for on a daily basis. Here’s how to order it: 

  • Grande Shaken Espresso 
  • No Classic Syrup
  • 1 Pump Mocha
  • 1 Pump Hazelnut Syrup (Toffeenut works as well!) 
  • 2 Pumps of Sugar Free Vanilla
  • 1 Stevia

Almond Cinnamon Iced Coffee

I must confess, I didn’t love this drink. However, that is probably due to my overbearing sweet-tooth; this coffee is sweet enough, yet far from overwhelming, and is surprisingly refreshing (if coffee can be described that way). 

  • Venti Iced Coffee with Milk
  • No Classic Syrup
  • Almond Milk
  • 1 Pump Sugar Free Cinnamon Dolce Syrup
  • 3 Stevia

Egg White and Roasted Red Pepper Egg Bites

These snack-sized egg bites are on the menu as they come, and I LOVE them. Gluten free, vegetarian and full of nutrients, the Roasted Red Pepper Egg Bites are my favorite food item on the Starbucks menu. They’re available all day, but I prefer to get them at lunch, as they are bigger than expected and will keep you very full.

How to Crush the College Board (Academically Speaking!)

By: Kiera Kofkin-Hansen

Administration of this year’s AP Exams went underway this week, with Tuesday kicking off the next two weeks of stress students have been dreading since they decided on their classes last spring. The recently implemented digital format of these exams can be a blessing or a curse, depending on personal preference. However, I’m here to tell you the tricks I’ve learnt after three years of attempting to please the College Board on their wicked tests.

  1. DO NOT CHEAT

I don’t know if I’m just sensitive because I’m still scarred from sophomore year when tests were in person and HANDWRITTEN, but cheating is a no go. I have complete faith in the College Board that they can and will detect plagiarism, not to mention that they sinfully design their tests in order to allow for zero time to think, let alone look something up “real quick”. I promise you, you will score significantly better if you put your faith in yourself rather than the internet this one time. 

  1. Notes are okay (but you didn’t hear it from me)

As I mentioned, there is little time to do anything other than select the first answer that came to you whilst taking these tests, but having a few notes of important concepts next to your device is always a little helpful, even if just as a crutch. I wouldn’t consider this cheating as much as a memory boost, and I speak from experience when I say whatever you feel is important enough to have on close call will more than likely only be useful when it comes to FRQ’s and written responses (so don’t waste what precious time you have on multiple choice!) 

  1. Study, study, and study!!!

My last but certainly most important trick for these digital exams is to study. I know: boring. The worst part of homework ever. “I can’t do it because someone actually TOLD me to”. It’s cliche, yet astronomically helpful in regards to your performance, and you’ll be glad you did on the day. A trick I learned from AP Psychology this year (shout out Mrs. Richards!) is that studying a little bit consistently over a long period of time quite literally melts the information into your brain more effectively than a night-before-cram-session, and I highly recommend it. As someone who detests sitting and studying and would much rather fill out a one hundred question study guide, I’m forever grateful that I decided to actually put the work into studying this year for exams because I felt so much more confident and it made my exams less like a chore and more like another super fun activity! 

AP exams, like any other exams, are highly stressful, yet there are ways to ease the pressure on exam day in order to boost your serotonin and scores all at once! I hope my tricks help you future test-takers take on the College Board with your heads held high!