The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.carry.casket
    CARRYING—Riley Terry (blue jacket) and Mason Vaughn lead the way, carrying an empty casket outside to the hearse waiting at the curb. Morenci juniors and seniors visited Eagle Funeral Home last week to learn about the role of a funeral director and to understand the process of arranging for a funeral.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.office
    NEW OFFICES—Fayette village administrator Steve Blue speaks with tax administrator Genna Biddix at the new front desk of the village office. Village council members voted to use budgeted renovation funds targeted for the old office and instead buy the vacant bank building on the corner of Main and Fayette streets. The old office was sold to Sherwood State Bank. When everything is put into place in the spacious new village office, an open house will be scheduled. Council member David Wheeler donated all of his time needed to make changes in the bank interior to fit the Village’s needs.

Creating yearbook has changed 2011.09.14

Written by David Green.

yearbook_staffBy DAVID GREEN

New technology, new ideas, a whole new approach to the high school yearbook.

Production has changed dramatically over the past 10 to 15 years, said Morenci yearbook adviser Heather Walker.

“With digital cameras and online design programs, almost everything is done on the computer—writing copy, cropping images, laying out pages, proofing and sending final pages to the publisher,” she said.

Clipping clip art, counting characters to determine the fit of a photo caption, laying out pages by cut-and-paste are tasks the current staff has never faced. It’s all old technology that existed before they came along to take their turn at recording the school’s history.

Changes in how the book is produced have led to new options in how events are covered. Last year’s staff—six of them are still part of the current team as seniors—whole-heartedly accepted a new approach and produced a Revista like none seen before here.

The 2011 yearbook followed more of a magazine style, said editor Carolyn Blaker. Smaller photos—but lots of photos—more words, and whole new approach to how students and events are covered.

“There’s a lot more writing in it,” Blaker said, “and there are a lot of photos in it. It’s definitely more work.”

Where past yearbooks consisted mostly of photographs and captions, staff members have written numerous short articles.

“”We’re forcing kids to read the book, which is good,” Blaker said, “because they’re finding out they enjoy it. There’s a lot more about what kids do.”

The staff has changed the way they think about a yearbook, Mrs. Walker said. One of those new approaches involves a concerted effort to get photos in of as many students as possible. The goal was to have at least three photos of every student, and they came close to meeting that objective.

“When I was on the yearbook staff in high school—and even more recently—the yearbook was often a reflection of the staff in terms of coverage,” Mrs. Walker explained. “The staff determined who was in the book and which events, clubs or sports were most important. It was perfectly acceptable to have a book filled with images of the same students over and over. This was part of the appeal of being on the staff—controlling which photos were featured.”

The staff is constantly coming up with creative ways to capture students who aren’t involved in extracurricular activities.

“In this way we try to capture a more accurate picture of the make up of the total student body,” she explained.

Some students are still going to appear more than others because they’re involved in more activities. That’s inevitable in a small school district.

Chronology

Another big change in the approach is to cover events chronologically, giving a running account of what transpired during the school year.

In the past there were categories, with a section for sports, a section for clubs, etc. Now a school organization that’s active during the whole school year will receive more coverage.

“It’s a more accurate historical record of the school year, more journalistically sound, and it also affords more opportunities for coverage,” Mrs. Walker said.

The staff approached the past school year in what it called triads or three-week intervals. 

“We covered events that happened during each three-week period,” Blaker said. “It’s more about what the kids do.”

Another break with tradition is to provide some coverage of what students are involved outside of school.

It takes some effort by the staff to keep abreast of what’s going on in the school and community.

Photos

A final major split from the past is to accept the submission of photos from other students and from parents.

“This is a change in the industry overall,” Mrs. Walker said. “In fact, Jostens, our publishing company, makes this easy by offering an on-line portal where parents can log on and upload their photographs for use by the yearbook staff.”

“It helps a lot when you have only eight people on the yearbook staff,” said new member Michaela Merillat.

Parents are more likely to attend every event in which their child participates, and some of those parents are capturing good images.

Parents should contact Mrs. Walker by calling 458-7502 or sending photos by e-mail to [email protected] Parents and students can also put images on flash drives and take them to school.

Many readers never noticed the theme of “three” that’s pervasive throughout the recent Revista, but Mrs. Walker doesn’t see how a student could open the book and not see the overall change that was made.

“I know our staff is really proud of the work they did last year and I hope, more than anything, that our readers can appreciate the lengths we went to to try to include every student—whether the most popular, the most athletic, or the most academically gifted,” she said.

• Books are on sale for $60—the same price as in recent years despite the change to an all-color book. Middle school student photos are included.

Advertisers account for 60 percent of the yearbook revenue stream and staff members will soon begin approaching business owners for sponsorship again.

“We’re thankful for all the individuals and businesses who buy ad space year after year,” Mrs. Walker said.

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