Tag Archives: Twana Pinskey

Celebrating five years

Twana Pinskey

Photo Editor

A cornucopia of talent and musical genius was evident as Saint Clair County Community College students presented “Tapestry,” the latest in the “Thursday at Noon Concert Series” April 15 at the SC4 Fine Arts Theatre in Port Huron.

This year’s presentation marks the fifth anniversary of “Tapestry” at SC4.

According to SC4 student and “Tapestry” performer, Amanda Carnat, “Tapestry” was started five years ago to offer dancers, musicians and singers the needed place to perform.

“We needed a place to perform. [“Tapestry”] is getting better every year,” replied Carnat. SC4 Visual and Performing Arts Adjunct Instructor and “Thursday at Noon Concert Series” host, Lillian Maley, discussed “Tapestry” as being a place where the students could learn.

She voiced her pleasure about the student’s performance. “I thought they were wonderful,” replied Maley.

Cello player and SC4 student, Chad Northcutt, composed an original composition entitled, “Winter Scenes” that was performed during the concert.

Accordingly pieces were performed from the SC4 choir that included 19th-20th century Folk music, Broadway as well as Classical presentations. Gasps of surprise and bursts of applause rippled through the audience as each group performed.

“The choir was wonderful,” said Jack Recor of Fort Gratiot Michigan. Recor felt the students had done a good job. SC4 students shared his sentiments.

SC4 student, Business Management major and event performer, 20 year old Sean Lathrop of Port Huron felt the “Tapestry” performance was a good way to show creative expression. “We don’t get a lot of opportunity to show off our skills and talents, so this was great,” replied Lathrop.

Upcoming events at the Fine Arts Theatre include: noon concert, “Boogie Woogie Babies” on April 22; SC4 Theatre Performance, “Young King Arthur” on May 15. Information on either of these events can be obtained by calling the SC4 Visual and Performing Arts at: 810-989-5709.

Reflections of India at SC4

Twana Pinskey

Photo Editor

   “Reflections of India,” the latest in SC4’s “Thursday at noon” concert series provided listeners with classical, Hindustani music, on April 1 at the Fine Arts auditorium in Port Huron.

   During the concert, sitarist Brock Dale of Toronto and Tabalist, Nicholas McKinlay, also of Toronto, performed selections from Bhairav, Kafi, Purvi, Malkauns, Bilawal and Manji Khamaj.

   Dale and McKinlay auditioned to be a part of the “Thursday at noon” series in an unusual way.

   “They had no CD’s of their music for use to audition with, so I listened to them on the phone,” said concert host Lillian Maley.

   Brock Dale was not seated in the usual position for a musician playing a sitar.

According to Dale, he was recovering from tail bone surgery, three days before performing at SC4. This made it difficult for him to perform at a traditional stance.

   Eastern hemisphere music, however, was not always embedded into Dale’s life.

   “I began as a student of western classical music and rock and roll, with jazz and blues thrown in as well,” said Dale. According to Dale, his mentor loaned him her sitar for a year. “I grew by leaps and bounds that year. I played every day,” he said.

   Dale said his life changing moment came when he saw sitarist, Ravi Shankar, perform. “He (Shankar) was 87 years old when I saw him perform with his daughter,” replied Dale.

   “I thought it (concert) was very relaxing and interesting,” said 18 year old Cody Kimball.

 Kimball, broadcasting major and an SC4 student ambassador, would like to see more of these types of events in the future.

   “It was nice to see a multi-cultural experience like this at SC4,” said Kimball.

   The next “Thursday at Noon” concert presentation scheduled is “Tapestry.” It will be performed on April 15 at the Fine Arts Theatre in Port Huron.

College Tuition: Priced Right?

Twana Pinskey

In-district students will pay $2.50 a contact hourin tuition increase at SC4 beginning fall of 2010. Photos by Twana Pinskey
In-district students will pay $2.50 a contact hourin tuition increase at SC4 beginning fall of 2010. Photos by Twana Pinskey

Photo Editor

   Despite recession declines, tuition costs are on the rise all over the United States. Michigan, one of the hardest hit states is not immune to these rising costs.

   St. Clair County Community College’s Board of Trustees voted to approve a tuition increase at their March 18 meeting.

   As a result, students registering for in district fall classes will pay $89 per contact hour, up from $86.50 per contact hour. This is only a $2.50 per contact hour increase for in district students.

   Out of district students will pay $170 per contact hour up from $165 per contact hour. Out of state students will face only a $7 per contact hour increase.

   SC4 alumni Kenda Pakulski, of St. Clair, feels that as a community college, the continuation of raising tuition has been ongoing since she was a student.

   “It is outrageous that instead of promoting and making the [acquirement] of an education easier, SC4 is making it harder to get an education for those of modest monetary means,” replied Pakulski.

   “A $2.50 per contact hour increase? Does that include parking costs?” asked freshman student, Carrie Sass of Port Huron.

   Ivy League schools such as Harvard are not immune to tough economic times either. According to www.newser.com, Harvard Law School had to suspend their free tuition program for students willing to work five years in public service areas after twice as many expected signed up.

   “No one wants to pay higher costs,” replied Shawn Starkey, Executive Director of Public Relations and Marketing at SC4. Starkey sited lost state aid and a decrease in millage revenues as being part of deciding factors in the minimal tuition increase.

   SC4 Student Government vice president, Chuck King, echoed Starkey’s sentiments. King said, “As much as we all hate to see increases in any form, with Michigan’s current economy all of us are going to have to bear the brunt of increased costs.”

     There does appear to be a silver lining in this cloud after all. King explained that with the passing of H.R. 4872 Healthcare and Education Affordability Reconciliation Act 2010, riders for scholarship assistance will be offered in health professions for those from disadvantaged backgrounds.  

A century of being prepared

This vintage Boy Scout handbook and plaque are among the many scouting memorabilia exhibits on display at the Port Huron Museum through April 25. Photos by: Twana Pinskey
This vintage Boy Scout handbook and plaque are among the many scouting memorabilia exhibits on display at the Port Huron Museum through April 25. Photos by: Twana Pinskey

Twana Pinskey

Photo Editor    

   Boy Scouts of America website states that boy scouts was founded to help young people attain skills necessary to become responsible, well rounded citizens.

Founded in 1910, the scouts celebrate their 100th anniversary this year.

  Port Huron Museum, in collaboration with Blue Water council of Boy Scouts of America, opened the “Celebrating 100 years of Scouting” exhibit at the Main Museum in Port Huron Feb 6th and will continue the exhibit through April 25.

   According to the “Scout-o-rama” web site, there are many celebrities who are former scouts: Walter Cronkite, journalist, television anchor; movie mogul, Steven Spielberg; Henry Hank Aaron, baseball player; Bruce Jenner, Olympic Gold Medalist; Mark Spitz, Olympic swimming gold medalist.

   SC4’s President, Dr. Kevin Pollock, is an Eagle Scout having attained this status on March 25, 1973 with troop 368 in Grand Blanc, Michigan. “It gave me a lot of opportunity to see things from different perspectives,” said Dr. Pollock. According to Pollock, the Eagle Scout ceremony and going to Camp Tapico in Grayling, Michigan were among his favorite memories of scouting.

   According to the museum’s Web site, the exhibit was designed by their curator of exhibits and collections, Suzette Brombley. “Most of the material used to build this exhibit was donated,” explained Brombley.

   The history of scouting in America is shown through exhibits such as photographs, old uniforms, patches, personal recollections of former scouts, hands on activities such as knot tying and practicing firearms skills with a laser simulator.

   According to Holly Madock, museum manager of volunteers, in addition to this variety of activities, groups can schedule an overnight stay as part of the scouting experience.

   “It went really well when we did our last overnight stay,” said Madock. She explained another overnight is being planned for April 16. Adults are required to stay with the overnighters.

   Other scouting activities offered at the museum include identification of animal tracks, and “secrets of the pinewood derby.”

   Museum hours are 11 a.m. through 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Further information on this exhibit can be obtained by calling the museum at:  810-982-0891.

A century of being prepared

Twana Pinskey

Photo Editor

Boy Scouts of America website states that boy scouts was founded to help young people attain skills necessary to become responsible, well rounded citizens.

Founded in 1910, the scouts celebrate their 100th anniversary this year.

Feb. 6, Port Huron Museum, in collaboration with Blue Water council of Boy Scouts of America, opened the “Celebrating 100 years of Scouting” exhibit at the Main Museum in Port Huron and will continue the exhibit through April 25.

According to the “Scout-o-rama” web site, there are many celebrities who are former scouts: Walter Cronkite, journalist, television anchor; movie mogul, Steven Spielberg; Henry Hank Aaron, baseball player; Bruce Jenner, Olympic Gold Medalist; Mark Spitz, Olympic swimming gold medalist.

SC4’s President, Dr. Kevin Pollock, is an Eagle Scout having attained this status on March 25, 1973 with troop 368 in Grand Blanc, Michigan. “It gave me a lot of opportunity to see things from different perspectives,” said Dr. Pollock. According to Pollock, the Eagle Scout ceremony and going to Camp Tapico in Grayling, Michigan were among his favorite memories of scouting.

According to the museum’s Web site, the exhibit was designed by their curator of exhibits and collections, Suzette Brombley. “Most of the material used to build this exhibit was donated,” explained Brombley.

The history of scouting in America is shown through exhibits such as photographs, old uniforms, patches, personal recollections of former scouts, hands on activities such as knot tying and practicing firearms skills with a laser simulator.

According to Holly Madock, museum manager of volunteers, in addition to this variety of activities, groups can schedule an overnight stay as part of the scouting experience.

“It went really well when we did our last overnight stay,” said Madock. She explained another overnight is being planned for April 16. Adults are required to stay with the overnighters.

Other scouting activities offered at the museum include identification of animal tracks, and “secrets of the pinewood derby.”

Museum hours are 11 a.m. through 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Further information on this exhibit can be obtained by calling the museum at:  810-982-0891.

Quiero tacos

Twana Pinskey

Photo Editor

   Children helping others were at the heart of the annual “Speed the Light” banquet at the Marysville Assembly of God Church Sunday, Feb. 28.

   Children of the “Youth Awakening” program spent the evening taking food orders, delivering beverages and appetizers such as nachos. Guests dined on tacos and a variety of deserts.

   Volunteer Amber Warner, 16, of Port Huron, spent the evening face painting guests for donations. “I’m thoroughly enjoying myself. It’s a lot of fun.”

   Jeff Coulter of Port Huron has attended this annual event for the past few years. Coulter, a SC4 student, is leader of SC4’s “Intervarsity Christian Fellowship.

   An anonymous donation to strolling minstrels resulted in Coulter being serenaded by the minstrels at the banquet. “This is great to see. I’ve volunteered in the kitchen the past two years,” replied Coulter.

    Marysville Assembly of God youth pastor, Jeff Turner, explained that their church has participated in this event for 20 years. Turner has been youth pastor for seven years. The annual banquet, hosted by the church’s youth, exceeded their fundraising goal last year.

   “Last year, our goal was to raise $2000 and we raised $6000,” replied Turner. According to Turner, this year’s goal was to match or exceed $6000. Monies raised from this year’s banquet, currently stand at $3500.

     According to the “National Youth Ministries” website, “Speed the Light” is a student initiated charitable program, founded in 1944, that uses monies raised to provide much needed equipment to missionaries in the United States and over 180 countries around the world.

   Information on the “Speed of Light” program and how you can donate can be obtained by calling 810-364-6164.

Homerun for Skippers

Twana Pinskey

Photo Editor

   “The other sports are just sports. Baseball is a love,” said Bryant Gumbel, sports caster and television journalist.

   SC4 Skipper’s men’s baseball team is giving back by sharing their love of baseball with children half way around the world in Honduras.

   Beginning Feb. 23 and continuing until March 12, the Skippers’ men’s baseball team, Phi Theta Kappa Lambda Mu, in calibration with Erie Square Gazette, will be sponsoring “Out of the Park Honduras Bound,” a collection  of used baseball gloves and softballs for the children of La Villa School for boys in Comayagua, Honduras.

   “I’m real excited about getting to do this;” said Skipper’s head coach Denny Dwyer. “It gives our kids a worldwide perspective on the impact of baseball and kids in other countries.”

   Megan Meyer, Director of Volunteering Housing at Apufram International’s Volunteer house in Comayagua, said, “Our little boys will play baseball with rocks and sticks if they can’t find tennis balls to use.”

   Meyer said the children often injure themselves while using the rocks. Meyers went on to explain that when using tennis balls, the kids will swat the ball with their hand because they have no bats.

   “The lack of the most basic equipment doesn’t keep the children of La Villa from participating in baseball,” Meyer stated.

   Head coach Denny Dwyer, along with the Skippers, and some of their assistant coaches recently watched a presentation about these children and wanted to pay it forward by getting involved in the collection of baseball equipment.

   Collection boxes will be outside SC4 Athletic Director Dale Vos’s office, at Phi Theta Kappa’s office and at the Erie Square Gazette from Feb. 23 through March 12.

   Further information can be obtained by calling the Erie Square Gazette Office, 810-987-5733.

Feminine Protection

Twana Pinskey

Photo Editor

   Girl’s night out is no longer mother’s “Tupperware” party for the members of  

Ladies Friday Fun Night at the Blue Water Sportsmen’s Club. It is located on Ravenswood in Kimball, Michigan.

   Picking out glassware has given way to picking up brass casings for reloading. These women would

rather ditch “Tupperware” parties for a night at the gun range.

The Ladies

   They are seated at a table, discussing gown selections for an upcoming wedding. At another table, more are sharing scrapbooks and photo albums.

   Wives, students and mothers sharing hope dreams for themselves and their children over a cup of coffee. It could be a kitchen table in any town, in any city. Not the clubhouse at Blue Water.

   Leaving husbands, children or boyfriend, to spend the evening at the gun range, learning about firearms in a stress-free, relaxing environment. That’s why these women chose the Blue Water program.

   Retired Marysville school teacher, Linda Campbell from Fort Gratiot, attended her first fun night session Jan. 22.

   “I was surprised to find out this program was here. A lot of people don’t even know it exists,” said Linda Campbell.

   Campbell expressed satisfaction in the warm welcome she received and felt she learned a lot about safety and would like to see more women come out.

   SC4 student, Rachel Kobylas of Port Huron, has participated for two weeks.

   “I have enjoyed both my experiences. I really appreciate their emphasis on safety,” replied Kobylas.        

   She was first introduced to shooting sports at the age of 11, participating in an event sponsored by the YMCA for dads and daughters camping together.

   She would use bb guns and air rifles with her dad. “I think skeet shooting is really, really cool,” said Kobylas.

   Sportsmen club member, Penny McCloud of St. Clair, has been shooting since marrying her husband, thirty years ago.

   McCloud focuses on her favorites shooting sports: the Friday fun night programs and shooting for twenty years as a member the North South Skirmish Association. McCloud is a part of the seventh Tennessee regiment. She shoots vintage and reproduction Civil War era firearms.

   “I love shooting my original Smith carbine,” said McCloud. McCloud also likes shooting her revolver, and feels she has benefited by participating in the Ladies Friday fun night program.

   “I definitely feel safe being around the people that participate because of the focus on safety,” replied McCloud.

The Instructor

   Work roughed hands, five o’clock shadow with coffee cup in hand and dressed in camouflage pants wearing a Marines t-shirt, Mark McDougal enters the downstairs basement range.

   Mark, known as “Mac” to his ladies, is the lead instructor of the Friday fun night program. 

   His voice booms out instructions to the participants. “Ok ladies, muffs and glasses. The line is going hot.”

   Each group of participants has volunteers that are men at the club standing by to offer assistance. Also to answer questions and watch to see that everyone is observing safety guidelines.

   “Women are often better students, because they are coachable,” said McDougal. “Men will sometimes come to a range, thinking they already know how to shoot and handle a firearm safely.”

   McDougal was instrumental in starting the Blue Water program over five years ago to offer women the opportunity to learn about fire arms and safety in a stress-free environment.

   During the women’s time on the ranges, the only men allowed in the room are the instructors and safety volunteers.

   “Women are more relaxed and better able to focus if they aren’t worried about loved ones, such as husbands and boyfriends watching them,” replied McDougal.

  Volunteer and safety instructor, John McCloud of St. Clair, offered that this was a non-competitive program designed to introduce women to shooting sports with proper instruction and the focus on learning safety and having fun.

   McCloud felt that the men really respect the ladies that participate in the program and the men willingly offer assistance to those who participate.

   “You bet ya, the men respect our ladies,” replied McCloud. Both McCloud and McDougal implement activities such as shooting at a paper dart board, or shooting at bowling pins, as well as games such as playing “tic-tac-toe” to improve the ladies capabilities.

   How to handle themselves in a dangerous situation is also addressed by the instructors.

“Don’t make our schools a killing zone”

   Defensive shooting, concealed carry and both sides of these issues are openly discussed. Both men and ladies fun night participants readily share knowledge about their opinions.

   If passed, Michigan Senate Bill 747 would allow concealed carry on college campus and in dormitories.  Law abiding citizens, who have concealed carry permits, would be able to carry on all public college campuses and in dorms statewide (http://www.usacarry.com and www.legislature.mi.gov ).

   “I believe that everyone who does not have a criminal record should be able to conceal carry. They should definitely be able to carry on campus,” replied Penny McCloud. 

   Sc4 Student, Rachel Kobylas, shared similar sentiments. “People who aren’t criminals who have taken the proper training should be able to choose for themselves whether or not they wish to have a concealed carry permit,” Kobylas said. 

   She felt students and employees at colleges, who have concealed permits, should be allowed to carry on campus. “Absolutely. If they have had the training, why not,” replied Kobylas.

   “Most gun owners are very safety conscious and are law abiding. Gun ownership and concealed carry has been shown to detour crime,” said Penny McCloud.

   But, not all of the women participating in the program agree.

   Linda Matthews, of Kimball Township, participates in the ladies program. She has been around firearms since she was a child, growing up in a home that had firearms.

   Matthews loves to hunt, and she is against concealed carry on college campus, for both faculty and students.

   “It’s not the gun that is the issue; it’s the person that picks it up,” stated Matthews. She explained the person handling the firearm had to know safety.

 She explained she could see both the pros and the cons on campus concealed carry.

   “I am against it. We have a lot of 18 year-olds that are hot headed kids. I just don’t think the maturity level is there,” stated Matthews. She felt that even faculty should not be allowed to carry on college campus.

   SC4 does not have concealed carry on its campus. The administration’s policy prohibits it, as it does any weapons on their campus.

 Policies regarding concealed carry on college campus vary nationwide.

   According to MSNBC, nationwide there are 38 states that ban weapons at schools.

   According to National Conference of State legislatures, 16 states explicitly prohibit weapons on campus, while in other states each school is allowed to make its own decision.

   Michigan, one of these states that allow each school to make this decision, could soon have to change policy, should Senate Bill 747 pass.

   “Don’t make our schools a killing zone,” replied John McCloud. Mr. McCloud is among those at the fun night program that felt incidents such as the massacre at Virginia Tech that left 33 dead could have resulted in less carnage if faculty and students had been allowed concealed carry. Virginia is one of the states banning firearms at school.

Respect

   Participants in the fun night program remove their muffs and glasses and begin securing and packing away their firearms as another evening draws to a close.

   Ladies smile as they make plans to gather for dinner, meet for events on college campus or simply go their separate ways.

   In this lies the success of the fun night program. Each individual is respected, no matter their point of view.

   If we want to be respected for our points of view, we must respect others point of view, even if we don’t agree with them,” replied Kobylas.

Animal Unleashed at McMorran

TwanaPinskey

Photo Editor

   Before he became a pro wrestler, he was a teacher. Born April 16, 1937 in Madison Heights, Michigan, William James Meyer would earn a Master’s degree from Michigan State University and a Master’s degree from Central Michigan University before becoming George “The Animal” Steele.

   Steele dropped the ceremonial puck in the game between Ice hawks and Flint Generals at McMorran Feb. 12 in Port Huron.

   Prior to becoming the animal, Meyers coached football at Madison High School in Madison Heights.

According to the “History of the WWE” (WWE.com), Meyers was inducted into the Michigan High School Coaches Hall and was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 1995.

   Although Steele’s wrestling career spanned from 1967 through 1989, he continued making appearances through the late 1990’s.

   The line to meet “The Animal” stretched out of the door of the McMorran Arena’s Pro Shop, around the corner and up one level into the main arena at McMorran.

   A fitting tribute to the fans that still support him.

Putting on the Ritz

Twana Pinskey

Photo Editor

   Taking a trip abroad isn’t necessary to experience an “Evening in Paris.” All one needs to do is attend Studio 1219’s Black and White Gala; “An Evening in Paris” Sat. Feb. 27 in Port Huron.

     Studio 1219’s website states they are the largest public art venue in the thumb area. 1219 hosts a variety of activities such as art classes, “girl’s night out “and birthday party packages.

   Their ability to host an event like the Black and White Gala is an easily met challenge for Executive Director, Lee Perry.

   This event invites guests to come dressed in their finest black and white attire.

   Included in the 35 dollar per person fee is an evening of music, dancing, food and wine.

   Available during the fundraising activities are, “Drawings for Dollars” and silent and live auctions as well as the opportunity to have your picture taken in Paris. Further information can be obtained by calling 810-984-2787.