STATE LARGE GROUP SPEECH
By Holliday Mertens, freshman, staff writer
State Large Group Speech was to be held Saturday, Feb. 3 at Ankeny Centennial. Panorama’s very own Readers Theatre (Avery Bahrenfuss, Riley Gibson, Hadley Klein, Maddox Nunn, Noah Poldberg, Gracie Richter, Jaysen Stagg, Meredith Woodworth and Taylin Woolheater), Choral Reading (Piper Godwin, Emme Hardisty, Sabrina Huitt, Evelyn Hummel, Aubrey Lincoln, Anna Thompson and Nick Turner) and Musical Theatre (Emme Hardisty, Noah Poldberg, Jaysen Stagg, Anna Thompson and Taylin Woolheater) were supposed to compete to, hopefully, advance to All-State. However, only Choral Reading was able to perform. A bomb threat cut the competition short. All were evacuated immediately, and no one was harmed. The contest was moved to Monday, Feb. 5. On Saturday, Choral Reading, performed “Tell Tale Heart” by Edgar Allan Poe, which earned a score of 1-2-1, bringing their overall score to 1.
On Monday, Musical Theatre performed selections from “Avenue Q” by Jeff Whitty, which received a score of 1-1-2, making their overall score a 1. Readers Theatre earned the highest score of 1-1-1 with “The Norse Mythology Ragnasplosion” by Don Zolidis. All-State competitors were announced on Tuesday. With that, congratulations to Readers Theatre for being selected as a non-performer at All-State. Congrats to Musical Theatre and Choral Reading for making it as far as they did. Go, Panthers!
SENIOR SPOTLIGHT: GRACIE RICHTER
By Jessy Randol, freshman, staff writer
Gracie Richter will graduate from the class of 2024 with the plan to go to college for medical school or a business major. During high school, Gracie has been active in track and large group speech. Gracie’s proudest accomplishment was getting her four steps down in hurdles. Throughout her time at Panorama, Mrs. King was her favorite teacher because she enjoyed how she taught and she is a kind person. Gracie’s biggest advice to younger classmates is to be respectful to your teachers. Throughout her high school career, her biggest challenge was stressing out about things that could easily be solved.
Gracie grew up in Adair. Her favorite meal is chicken alfredo. When Gracie has free time, she likes to watch “Grey’s Anatomy” or hang out with her friends. If Gracie only had three words to describe herself, they’d be as funny, hardworking and kind. Gracie looks up to her mom because she has taught her to discipline herself and she has sacrificed a lot to get Gracie everything she needs. Overall, we will all miss Gracie’s joyous and spunky personality in the student section. We wish her luck in all of her future activities.
SENIOR SPOTLIGHT: ASHTON STAUFFER
By Hailey Hellman, freshman, staff writer
Ashton Stauffer is a senior at Panorama Schools. He is involved in basketball. He grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, and Adel. Ashton’s biggest challenge all through high school was transferring schools for his senior year, having to leave behind all the people he knew in Adel and come to Panorama where he hardly knew anyone.
Ashton looks up to his mom and his dad because they have had a big impact on his life. Mr. Little is his favorite teacher because of his great jokes. If he could go back and tell his younger self something, it would be, “Cherish every moment.” Coach Peasley’s quote, “Dare to be great” is his favorite.
He would describe his last four years as fast, COVID and basketball. The most challenging task as a senior has been learning how to use his voice in basketball and communicate. He hasn’t chosen where he’s going to attend college but does have some schools in mind. He plans to achieve his goals through hard work and dedication. Overall, Ashton Stauffer wants to be remembered as a hard worker. In 10 years, he imagines himself settled down in either Iowa or Nebraska and just living life.
SENIOR SPOTLIGHT: MADDOX HAMMERSTROM
By Jessy Randol, freshman, staff writer
Maddox Hammerstrom has been an active student at Panorama. He has participated in basketball, soccer, football, golf, track and band throughout his high school career. His plans after high school are to attend Northwestern to play basketball. Maddox plans to achieve his goals after high school by working hard and following God because he believes everything will work out from there. He would describe his last four years of school as hectic, fun and, overall, way too short. His most proud achievement is having the opportunity to play basketball in college because that has been his dream since he was younger.
Maddox grew up in Panora. He spends his free time either golfing or playing basketball. His most impactful coach throughout the years has been his basketball coach, Coach Peasley. The biggest advice he would give an underclassman is to work hard and, most importantly, have fun. As the years go on, he wants people to remember him for basketball. As you can see, Maddox sure does have a passion. If he could go back and tell his younger self something, he would say to not worry so much and chill out. Maddox is a well-known student athlete around the community of Panora, and we will miss him next year in all of our activities. We wish the best of luck to Maddox as he begins this next chapter of his life.
PANORAMA HONOR BAND
By Bjoerg Skovgaard, sophomore, staff writer
On Jan. 26, some of the Panorama band members went to the UNI Northern Festival of Bands for Honor band. Honor band is an opportunity for students to learn and experience musical challenges. “Honor bands are always a special trip, as it allows students to play with other students from other schools,” says Panorama band teacher Mr. Shorey. This music festival is a particularly special one for him since it was hosted by his alma mater. Mr. Shorey also mentions that he had participated in many other honor bands in high school, so he felt comfortable coaching these kids through a major festival, such as NFB. He recommends that underclassmen participate in the Honor Band since the focus of this honor band, in contrast to others such as All-State, is education in all areas of music performance. The kids were provided a chance to learn from composers on how they interpret their own music, worked with the UNI faculty in masterclasses, and heard many chamber ensemble concerts in between their rehearsals. It is a great experience for any high schooler, and it lets them see what’s out there for music after graduation.
For Mr. Shorey, the best part of the Honor Band is watching the kids in rehearsal and seeing their growth and becoming a completely different band and musicians. “In the student’s own personal development, they enjoyed getting to play with about 10 times more players than we have in our band here at Panorama. It was an opportunity for them to experiment more with dynamics and presented new challenges, such as coordinating with many players who are far away from themselves,” says Mr. Shorey. The only disadvantage was that the students needed to be more mentally prepared, and it can be difficult for kids to have only a little downtime. Even so, the students are already looking forward to next year, and that was a huge surprise for Mr. Shorey. Additionally, for Mr. Shorey, there is something special about taking select students who are dedicated to the program and giving them an opportunity to flourish. He believes that is what this trip was all about — watching these underclassmen mature into independent musicians.
This was as close to the ideal trip as Mr. Shorey could possibly imagine. At his alma mater, with highly dedicated students, learning all about band, and working with world-class musicians — you can’t have a better trip.
PANORAMA’S GOT TALENT
By Miyah Small, eighth-grader, staff writer
The Panorama’s Got Talent is a talent show for the students of Panorama. The participants ranged from sixth grade to seniors. The students showcased their talents for the community. The acts could be anything such as singing, dancing, magic and more.
For this year, the show was on Thursday, Feb. 8 at 7 p.m. in the auditorium. There were no judges; instead, the audience voted for their favorite act. The admission was free for all who wished to watch and cheer on the participants.
Results for the talent show were: Middle School division – first place: Evynn Stagg and Nella Rivas, who sang and danced; second place: Kaylee Michaelson, who also sang; and third place: Ava Thorn, who danced. High School division – first place Donovin Delp and Riley Gibson, who danced; second place: Lindy Nelson and Arilyan Steenblock, who sang and acted; and third place: Nevaeh Joynes, who sang. Thanks to all who participated in performing, cheering on the contestants and voting.
LEARNING ABOUT THE HOLOCAUST
By Marlee Herring, eighth-grader staff writer
Mrs. Dorhout’s eighth-grade language arts classes are learning about the holocaust. Students have been studying why the holocaust started, and what happened during and after World War II. The students have done a lot of research and activities during this time and have created many projects. Some of these include the seven steps to immigration during the war and creating a poster about a specific survivor of the holocaust. The students have been learning many different aspects of the war including why people got persecuted, what Hitler deemed the “perfect race,” why people couldn’t escape, and many more interesting topics.
The students have also been reading the play, “The Diary of Anne Frank.” Students are getting a firsthand account by reading a character’s part and being immersed in their story. They get a look into the life of a group of people hiding from the Nazis in an annex. Mrs. Dorhout has done a great job helping students understand both the tragedies and triumphs of these important historical events.