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West Side Story

West Side Story West Side Story is Iowa City West High's student newsmagazine. Like this page for updates on school West Side Story is Iowa City West High's student-run newsmagazine located in Iowa City, Iowa.

We offer updates on school events, students, news, sports, entertainment, in-depth stories, and more.

For the first time since 2015, the bird flu infects poultry farms nationwide.
05/05/2022
Avian Flu sweeps through Iowa

For the first time since 2015, the bird flu infects poultry farms nationwide.

Chores are expected on Iowa farms, but the Avian Flu is adding yet another chore to Iowa farmers’ responsibilities. Since the flu was detected in poultry farms in early April, farmers have had to kill over 24 million birds nationwide. This outbreak is the biggest since 2015 when over 50 million bi...

West high Trojans at the Drake Relays
05/05/2022
West high Trojans at the Drake Relays

West high Trojans at the Drake Relays

West High Track athletes competed at the Drake Relays this past weekend. West had 10 events between both the girls and boys teams earn “Blue standard times” or times in the top rankings, allowing them to compete at the “Blue Oval”, Drake University’s outdoor track. West High track and fiel...

Isabella Tisdale ’24 shares her opinion on the recent efforts to overturn Roe v. Wade.
05/05/2022
Overturning Roe v. Wade: A lazy solution to a bigger problem

Isabella Tisdale ’24 shares her opinion on the recent efforts to overturn Roe v. Wade.

As a teenage girl, my worries should be things like that big test in math next Friday and what I’m gonna do for college. But the reality is I am always worried about the government trying to control my body and my right to safe abortion. Roe v. Wade has been around for my whole...

West High has been named the number one high school in the state of Iowa by US News.
05/04/2022
West High ranked number one high school in Iowa

West High has been named the number one high school in the state of Iowa by US News.

“West High, Best High.” This phrase has been repeated around West High for years. At sporting events, competitions and in everyday conversation, every student has heard it. However, since 2018, this phrase ceased to be true… until now. For the first time since 2018, Iowa City West High School ...

"Everything Everywhere All at Once" is one of the most talked-about movies in the world. It's still selling out theaters...
05/04/2022
‘Everything Everywhere All at Once’ review: A game changer

"Everything Everywhere All at Once" is one of the most talked-about movies in the world. It's still selling out theaters six weeks after debuting. Read more in a new review from West Side Story:

I didn’t see “Everything Everywhere All at Once” the first weekend it was playing in theaters because it was completely sold out. The next weekend when I did go to see it with three of my friends we got the last four seats available in the entire theater. A week later, I went back to...

May the 4th be with you while you complete the West Side Story Wordle!
05/04/2022
Wordle Wednesday

May the 4th be with you while you complete the West Side Story Wordle!

​ Click the links below to play previous Wordles! April 27 April 20 April 6 March 30 March 23 March 9 March 2 Feb. 16 Feb. 23

WSS Intern Reem Kirja ’25 explains Arab culture and contributions.
05/02/2022
A beginner’s guide to Arab culture

WSS Intern Reem Kirja ’25 explains Arab culture and contributions.

It’s a humid April morning, and sounds of people getting ready for the day engulf the atmosphere. I wake up around 7 a.m., drink a cup of milk tea and head out. Most people rush to school or work, thinking it’s an ordinary April morning. Others spend their time counting down the days to their...

Robert Eggers's newest film is his most ambitious so far. Read more in a new review from West Side Story:
04/30/2022
‘The Northman’ review: Incredible(y brutal)

Robert Eggers's newest film is his most ambitious so far. Read more in a new review from West Side Story:

Robert Eggers’s third film, “The Northman”, is his most accessible yet. By no means does that make this film Easy to watch. Clocking in at 2 hours and 17 minutes it’s a little bit on the longer side, and the pace does get quite slow at points during the film; however, it’s done to establis...

04/30/2022

This week’s News Wrap Up, catch us @wsspaper every Friday as we cover weekly news from West High news, US news and, Iowa news.

Life After a Trojan: Sugarbear’s legacy continues
04/28/2022
Life After a Trojan: Sugarbear’s legacy continues

Life After a Trojan: Sugarbear’s legacy continues

James “Sugarbear” Hall graduated from West High in 1986, while at West he participated in various sports, even becoming a state champion in track coached by the legendary Coach Hollingsworth. He would end up being an all-american 800 meter runner for Iowa State University. Today he works as the ...

Have you ever wondered what your teachers looked like in high school? Well you can find out! Here's your teacher's best ...
04/27/2022
Teachers relive prom

Have you ever wondered what your teachers looked like in high school? Well you can find out! Here's your teacher's best prom looks.

Prom is an iconic and classic experience for most teenagers. Everyone looks forward to the moment when they can dress up and have a good time at the end of the year. It’s a great way to honor all the work that the upperclassmen have accomplished in their high school years. This year, West is...

Another edition of Baking Through the Seasons featuring Tessa Gibson '24, Eleanor Weitz '24, Reef Persons '24, and Ijin ...
04/27/2022
Baking through the seasons: Spring

Another edition of Baking Through the Seasons featuring Tessa Gibson '24, Eleanor Weitz '24, Reef Persons '24, and Ijin Shim '24! Spring has finally come and along with it comes a lot of super fun recipes.

Spring is a time of colors and fun when the warm weather finally comes after the surprisingly long winter. The recipes that have been picked out embody this with their warm coziness and their country comfort. They are easy to make and simply delicious. You just have to keep an eye on that caramel an...

Happy Wednesday! Play this week's West Side Story Wordle.
04/27/2022
Wordle Wednesday

Happy Wednesday! Play this week's West Side Story Wordle.

​ Click the links below to play previous Wordles! April 20 April 6 March 30 March 23 March 9 March 2 Feb. 16 Feb. 23

Columns Editor Helen Zhang ’22 discusses the importance of recognizing toxic positivity and how to avoid it.
04/27/2022
Helen’s Hot Takes: Problematic positivity

Columns Editor Helen Zhang ’22 discusses the importance of recognizing toxic positivity and how to avoid it.

Our society often portrays optimism as a virtuous trait for people to possess. We admire those who can see the bright side of every situation and stay positive through extreme struggles. However, there is a difference between being optimistic and having an excessively positive attitude. In fact, the...

Several teachers at West High were once students there, two of which happened to develop a unique relationship with some...
04/26/2022
Teachers teaching teachers

Several teachers at West High were once students there, two of which happened to develop a unique relationship with some of their teachers. Learn more about their relationship.

West High’s tradition of excellence spans over five decades, with hundreds of students coming and leaving, and hundreds of teachers departing and staying. It is no wonder that some teachers might have already crossed paths before becoming colleagues. The relationship between a teacher and a studen...

WSS photo gallery: a collection of photos of West High events from the past two weeks.1-3 :Cindy Wang ’24 runs distance ...
04/24/2022

WSS photo gallery: a collection of photos of West High events from the past two weeks.
1-3 :
Cindy Wang ’24 runs distance at the Eastern Iowa Track and Field Festival April 16.

Moustafa Tiea ’25 runs distance at the Eastern Iowa Track and Field Festival April 16.

4: Cameron Reimers ’22 tees off with her driver at the Finkbine Golf Course April 12.

5: Miguel Cohen Suarez ’22 runs for the ball in hopes of a goal at the soccer game against City High.

6: Christian Janis ’23 runs a relay at the Eastern Iowa Track and Field Festival April 16.

📸: Ceci De Young ’24.

7: Audience members take part in a silent auction held to benefit students attending Camp Courageous April 21.

8: Pammie Quintero-Rodriguez '23 sings "Write This Down" by George Strait April 21.

9: Luka Keeney '25 plays "Hello Hello" on the guitar during the Community Inclusion Club’s annual Talent Show April 21.

📸: Sachiko Goto ‘23.

For the April issue's cover story, WSS explores houselessness in Iowa City and how community members can help:
04/21/2022
Home

For the April issue's cover story, WSS explores houselessness in Iowa City and how community members can help:

Iowa nice: the term describes the overwhelming kindness members of the Hawkeye State practice. It refers to Iowans’ tendency to greet strangers on the street or make conversation while checking out at a store, whereas in other states, residents may walk past or shift focus to their phone. How far ...

04/21/2022
West Side Story Publication 4/21/22

Make sure to grab your copy of the April West Side Story today. Copies can be found on the magazine rack near room 111 or distributed by WSS staffers.

UNICEF Club will be hosting UNICEF Olympics, a charity fundraiser and community event, the week of May 16. More informat...
04/21/2022
UNICEF club to hold UNICEF Olympics

UNICEF Club will be hosting UNICEF Olympics, a charity fundraiser and community event, the week of May 16. More information about the event and how to sign up:

West High’s UNICEF Club will be hosting UNICEF Olympics, a charity fundraiser and community building event, the week of May 16. The event will take place after school and will feature events such as Ultimate Frisbee, Capture the Flag, Yoga Ball Soccer. The club will offer prizes of $20, $30, and $...

Did you miss us? Don't worry the West Side Story Wordle Wednesday is back!
04/20/2022
Wordle Wednesday

Did you miss us? Don't worry the West Side Story Wordle Wednesday is back!

​ Click the links below to play previous Wordles! April 6 March 30 March 23 March 9 March 2 Feb. 16 Feb. 23

On this episode of Recruiting Trail, learn about women's soccer player Makenna Vonderhaar's recruiting process as she mo...
04/19/2022
Recruiting Trail with Makenna Vonderhaar

On this episode of Recruiting Trail, learn about women's soccer player Makenna Vonderhaar's recruiting process as she moves on from being a Trojan to a Hawkeye.

Senior Makenna Vondehaar committed to play soccer for the Iowa Hawkeyes her sophomore year of high school. Learn about her recruiting process and how her recent ACL tear is affecting her and her senior season.

When a trend of self-development and improvement called the “that girl” trend rose to popularity in May 2021, it soon be...
04/18/2022
That girl and her toxic development

When a trend of self-development and improvement called the “that girl” trend rose to popularity in May 2021, it soon became many young women’s downfall.

Wake up at four in the morning, put on your expensive monochromatic workout set, go to the gym for hours, and get coffee from your local coffee shop. Then return to your clean minimalistic apartment to work your small business job where you are your own boss. This is a dream that many chase, but...

04/16/2022

This week’s News Wrap-Up hosted by Audrey Parrish covering West High News, Iowa News, Us News, World News and, weird news.

The boys soccer team picked up one set of bragging rights this week after taking down cross town rival City High. More o...
04/16/2022
Boys soccer takes down City High

The boys soccer team picked up one set of bragging rights this week after taking down cross town rival City High. More on the Trojans 4-2 win.

Coming off a tough loss to the highly-ranked Lightning the boys soccer team had a chance to pick up one set of bragging rights this week as they faced off with cross town rival City High. The Little Hawks got on the board early when Jacob Eisenberg ’22 found the back of the net on...

The West High boys tennis team defeated Prairie at their first home meet on April 14th.
04/15/2022
Boys tennis sweeps Prairie

The West High boys tennis team defeated Prairie at their first home meet on April 14th.

Even with the immense gusts of wind, the undefeated boys tennis team remained on top. The Trojans took down the Prairie Hawks with a score of 9-0 on their home courts. “No one wants to play in the wind but it’s just something that you have to do,” Jayden Shin ’23 said. Team captain Luca...

In a heart-filled matchup, both the City and West girls soccer teams joined together to honor the late Trojan Bolt swimm...
04/15/2022
Girls soccer falls to City High

In a heart-filled matchup, both the City and West girls soccer teams joined together to honor the late Trojan Bolt swimmer, Owen Skelley during the final fourteen seconds in the first half.

The girls soccer team traveled across town on April 14 to face the rivaling City High. With the occasional steal from the whipping winds, the Trojans were not able to maintain a handle on the ball. After a back and forth start, the Little Hawks found a hole and scored with 25 minutes left in...

High school movies are so wrong! I can't even enjoy this movie now! This is a universal experience. Like to hear about i...
04/13/2022
The truth behind high school movies

High school movies are so wrong! I can't even enjoy this movie now! This is a universal experience. Like to hear about it?

In high school, specifically West High, there aren’t really real people who follow the personalities seen in high school movies and shows. Don’t get me wrong, they still exist but they’re more like vague whispers of the people that we see on the screen. This happens because of a theory called ...

A look into staff’s perspectives on the incorporation of sixth grade and junior high.
04/13/2022
ICCSD School Board combines sixth grade with junior high

A look into staff’s perspectives on the incorporation of sixth grade and junior high.

Earlier this year, the ICCSD School Board made the decision to move sixth grade from elementary to junior high. Several areas in Iowa, like Clear Creek Amana and Solon, are already using this middle school model. This will come into effect in the fall of 2024. This will add about 400 students to the...

On Monday, April 11, a weapon threat was discovered at West High.
04/11/2022
Weapon threat called into West High

On Monday, April 11, a weapon threat was discovered at West High.

On Monday, April 11, an automated weapon threat was called into West High. This message was discovered early Monday morning and Superintendent Matt Degner and the authorities were contacted. An email was also sent to parents and staff, and later forwarded to students. Police officers arrived quickly...

CrossFit isn’t just a workout for Ethan Titus ‘22 but an opportunity to push himself to the limits.
04/11/2022
Crossing the limits

CrossFit isn’t just a workout for Ethan Titus ‘22 but an opportunity to push himself to the limits.

One step into Iowa City’s CrossFit Kilo 2 and all you can hear is Eminem’s ’Till I Collapse, barbells rattling, stationary bikes roaring, and sweat hitting the floor as it drips off of everyone’s forehead. Among them is West High senior and CrossFit athlete, Ethan Titus. Titus has been famil...

Spring is in the air! Here's some bucket list ideas to make this spring better than ever before.
04/11/2022
Spring bucket list

Spring is in the air! Here's some bucket list ideas to make this spring better than ever before.

We’ve all been struggling through the harsh temperatures and ever-lasting snowfalls of an Iowa winter but it’s finally begun to give way to spring. With the nice 70-degree weather that comes with spring, many more activities can be done. Here are some ideas of things to do to make this spring on...

04/09/2022

This week’s News Wrap Up, catch us @wsspaper every Friday as we cover weekly news from West High news, US news and, Iowa news.

One show down, three more to go. After Theatre West's opening night, meet the cast and crew behind the scenes of 'Anasta...
04/08/2022
Behind the curtain of Theatre West’s ‘Anastasia’

One show down, three more to go. After Theatre West's opening night, meet the cast and crew behind the scenes of 'Anastasia'.

‘Anastasia’ is finally taking the stage, but what goes on behind the scenes? With more than two hundred cast and crew members, Theatre West has had a profound impact in its members’ lives, including promoting future careers. “It has definitely inspired me and shown me that there’s more bey...

AP classes can be very stressful but with the right teacher, that burden can be relieved just a bit. AP teachers also ha...
04/08/2022
The unique teaching style of Andrew Bloom

AP classes can be very stressful but with the right teacher, that burden can be relieved just a bit. AP teachers also have a lot more freedom in the way that they can teach. West Side Story staffers have decided to place the spotlight on Mr. Bloom who is an AP teacher with a pretty unique teaching style.

The door opens, and posters of the globe fill your vision as students are conversing with the teacher of the room. The students are at ease and are able to retain information all while answering him with a witty comeback. This is the comfortable environment AP World teacher, Andrew Bloom, has create...

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Cool Leonard and the Band © 2019 js (thank you broadway) We are the streets We are the knife wielders Bam /Slam/CUT You pushed to far Meet you at the playground Bring fatso Dancing over the gates You got no escape You know who we are The gang That listened to the crap Watched the crap Was overheard by the crappers Take my cell And go to hell Tea in the bay Coming your way You’re so easy You’re not a government You’re a predicament Rattle your missiles Blow up the world You will not be forgiven “Gold medal kid with the heavy weight Crown…..Spirits go on Here come the pros Tear down your fu***ng wall Here come the pros “On the whole bugging Fu***ng loving street “ Who knows? Bright as a rose Just out of reach” Get your pitchforks Time to march “Somethings coming It’s gonna be great” “Come on deliver To me” Woodstock survivors Come on in Have you forgotten? We are the streets! Our time is wasting
Another excellent edition- great job by the entire staff!