Tag: 2012

12/12/12 at 12:12


Photo: Rus VanWestervelt

Above are the students enrolled in Journalism 1, in addition to Co-Editor-in-Chief Karli Funk and Online Editor-in-Chief Paul Didwall, on December 12, 2012 at exactly 12:12. This picture was captured to mark the last time the month and day will coincide with the last two digit of the year until January 1, 2101.

Pictured (Left to Right): Top – Jonah, Giana, Naseem, Karli, Ethan, Michael, Darius Bottom – Paul, Carolina, Naomi, Caroline, Tanya, Sarah


The Spectacular Winter Spectacular

Article: Paul Didwall

Photos: Caitlin Martin

Ellicott City, MD – If The Winter Spectacular were a movie, and you were to watch a trailer for it, quotes would sequentially appear on the screen with sayings such as, “10 out of 10,” “Five Stars,” “Centennial Amazes Again,” “There is a reason it is called The Winter SPECTACULAR.” The annual Centennial High School event was held on November 29 and 30 this year, at 7:00 PM in the CHS auditorium. Tickets were $10 a piece and could be purchased at the door or in advance.

Prior to the 7:00 start time, the Madrigals sang the audience in to the room with songs from their repertoire. The show then started off with Santa’s journey to CHS, featuring a comical video of him driving in to the Centennial parking lot blaring holiday music, and then running in to the school getting each performing group ready for the show. Santa, played by Benjamin Evans, and two of his reindeer, Jillian Loeffler and Sarika Reddy, got the performances stared by welcoming the entire cast on stage to perform There’s No Business Like SNOW Business! Santa and his reindeer continued to keep the audience entertained throughout the night with the story of their trip around the globe.

Madrigals then took to the stage to perform Deck the Halls!, and returned at various intervals to wow the audience with more holiday tunes. The Centennial Dance Academy – an after school program for younger dances that was introduced last year – was the second group to take the stage and had a considerable number of performances throughout the night. Each Musical Theater performance was very enthusiastic and well put-together, making it easy to enjoy.

Junior and Senior Dance companies wowed the audience on many occasions including a detailed group performance of The Nutcracker Suite, featuring a solo by senior Madison Croxson. After a few more dances, a phenomenal iteration of Sleigh Ride was performed by the Strings. The show continued on with more dances, musical theater performances, and singing from the Madrigals, as well as more details of the story being told by Santa and the Reindeer.

By this point of The Winter Spectacular, it was time for Jazz Band to take the stage. The Jazz band performed Santa Claus is Coming to Town and Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas, with flawless vocal accompaniment by Anne Marie Demme. Strings played another great song between the execution of the two Jazz band songs. After the various performances by the various performing arts groups, the entire cast was again brought back in to the auditorium to collectively perform Feliz Navidad. The Band provided the instrumental music, Madrigals and Music Theater sang the lyrics, and dancers filled the auditorium aisles to dance and pass out festive candy canes. The Jazz Band then returned to play the crowd out of the auditorium, with a drum solo from Kevin Lehr.

The night should be considered a success by all involved. Congratulations to the cast and crew of The 2012 Winter Spectacular on a fantastic job.

If you missed the chance to visit this event on Thursday, I would urge you to attend tonight’s (11/30/12) performance at 7:00 PM in the CHS auditorium.

The Results Are In (Charles Regnante)

President Obama scored himself a second term in the White House on Tuesday. He nabbed every single battleground state except for North Carolina. He even snatched Florida from Romney’s grasps. By winning this race, he has proven that his message about lifting the middle class resonates with the majority of voting Americans. This election was neither a landslide nor a tight race. Obama barely won the popular vote by acquiring 50% of the votes, compared to Romney’s 48%. Romney trailed Obama by a 2%-3% margin in most battleground states. Obama won the electoral vote with ease. His 303 electoral votes triumphed over Romney’s 206. All in all, both campaigns fought until the last round. Both candidates delivered punches to the other. They both stumbled and fell a few times, but they immediately got back on their feet the next time. But in the end, it was President Barrack Obama who delivered the knockout punch.

Final Presidential Debate (Charles Regnante)

The final presidential debate between incumbent President Barack Obama and challenger Mitt Romney took place on Monday, October 22 at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida. The debate topic was foreign affairs, an area that gave Obama an advantage with his arsenal of top secret knowledge that only Presidents are privy to view.

Obama controlled the debate in a similar way that Romney controlled the first debate. He loaded his verbal weaponry and attacked Romney with rapid fire from the start. He spit out foreign policy facts and figures with the rapid fire of a machine gun. For example, he attacked Romney’s earlier campaign statement naming Russia as the U.S.’s Number.1 foreign threat by saying” The 1980’s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back…the cold war has been over for 20 years…you seem to want to import the foreign policies of the 1980’s, the social policies of the 1950’s, and the economic policies in the 1920’s.” Obama also devastated Romney with his reference to “horses and bayonets” calling into question his rival’s understanding of the modern military.

Romney’s confidence from the first debate was not apparent. While he gave a good showing on foreign affairs knowledge, he played it too safe. First, Romney failed to differentiate how his foreign policy would benefit the country more than Obama’s. When he had the chance Romney didn’t come close to attacking Obama on his handling of the murder of the American Ambassador and three other Americans at the Libyan Embassy – a subject he has hammered Obama on at every chance on the campaign trail. There were also some awkward moments when Romney answered foreign affair questions by bringing in the topic of economy.

Going into this last debate, the two candidates were tied with one debate win each. With Obama having the advantage in foreign affairs knowledge, Romney needed to tie the President or win the debate to come out ahead. While Romney held his own against Obama, he wasn’t fighting as tough as he did in the first debate. For a candidate that has attacked Obama for not being tough enough on foreign affairs, this was a mistake noted by many television commentators.

The next round of debates will not be in a town hall but in the court of public opinion. With only days left before the election, the candidates can only hope that the undecided voters continue to listen to their messages on the campaign trail. Win or lose, both candidates deserve praise for receiving the nomination of their party – a distinction held by only a few men in history.

Second Presidential Debate (Charles Regnante)

On Tuesday October 16, 2012, the second presidential debate between Incumbent President Barack Obama and challenger Mitt Romney took place at Hofstra University, New York. The debate featured a town-hall-style format with the audience consisting of some 80 undecided voters from Nassau County. Unlike the first presidential debate, no candidate scored the clear victory. Even though both candidates were pretty even, polls showed Obama edged Romney at the end of the debate.

It was a near certainty that the incumbent would improve on his disappointing first performance. And, he did that and more. Obama rushed out from his corner of the ring and “came out swinging.” He actually came out swinging a little too hard and seemed to be rather angry instead of passionate in the first 15 minutes. But he quickly altered his persona to a more serious and sedate tone and hit Romney with three sharp responses. First, he pushed back with his line about how his pension wasn’t as big as the Governor’s. Second, Obama deflected Romney’s assailment about his response to the Benghazi attack in Libya. Third, Obama dealt Romney a final stinger using his “47% comment” in his closing speech of the debate. Continue reading “Second Presidential Debate (Charles Regnante)”

Presidential Race Update (Charles Regnante)

The race between President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney is heating up in their fight to win the White House on November 6, 2012. With a couple of weeks to go before the election, the televisions have been flooded with political television ads.

President Obama’s ads boast his accomplishments on historic health care reform, the death of Osama Bin Laden, auto-industry revival, economic growth, better relations with foreign entities, the repeal of the “don’t ask don’t tell” policy, and clean energy initiatives. Romney’s ads paint a different picture of Obama, focusing on the President’s weak foreign policy, financial bailouts, high unemployment, and falling household incomes.

Governor Romney’s ads boast how in Massachusetts he used his Bain Capital business success to accomplish creating thousands of jobs, decreasing unemployment, cutting red tape for businesses, eliminating a $3 billion deficit without borrowing or raising taxes, and signing into law job-creating incentives. Obama ads have scolded Romney on his Swiss bank accounts, controversial foreign investments, avoidance of personal tax incomes bills and his recovery plan that would cost nearly 2 million jobs in 2014.

Be sure to stay tuned to The Wingspan for continued political updates. You can bookmark CHSWINGSPAN by pressing ctrl+d (windows) or command+d (mac). You can also follow our updates by clicking the “follow” button in the bottom right of this page. And of course , find us on Facebook and Twitter (@chswingspan).


Political Student Correspondent Introduction (Charles Regnante)

Here’s a chance to stay informed about national and local political issues. As the Wingspan’s new student political correspondent, I will be reporting on political issues starting with the 2012 Presidential Election. I’ll provide factual, unbiased information from both sides of the political aisle. I welcome student thoughts and comments.