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

  • Front.cheers
    MACEE BEERS joins other Fayette Elementary School students for the annual Mini-Cheer performance during the half-time break at the basketball game.
  • Family.3.wide
    CHILDREN at Stair District Library’s Family Story Time toss scarves into the air during an activity. The evening program provided a mix of stories, songs, dancing, crafts and snacks Monday evening. The program is offered at 5:30 p.m. every Monday for five more weeks. The program is designed for three to five year olds and their family.
  • Front.newpaper.2
    THE INTERVIEW—Evelyn Joughin (right) records the interaction with an iPad while Jack Varga, next to her, asks questions of Morenci Elementary School principal Gail Frey. Morenci senior Sam Cool (standing) listens. Cool serves as the editor for the newspaper written by members of Mrs. Barrett’s second grade class.
  • Front.code.2
    WRITING CODE—Brock Christle (left), a Morenci fifth grade student, takes a look at the progress being made by fourth grader Anthony Lewis. Libby Rorick, a sixth grade student, is next in a line of girls trying out the coding tutorials. This year marked Morenci’s second year of participation in the Hour of Code project.
  • Front.gym.new
    REMIE RYAN (left) tries to dodge the foam wand held by Hayden Bays during physical education class at Morenci Elementary School. In the background, Lauryn Dominique and Brooklyn Williams stay clear of the tag. Second grade students were working on cardiovascular health on the first day back from vacation. For the record, Safety Tag is a very difficult sport to photograph.
  • 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.library.books
    MACK DICKSON takes a book off the “blind date” cart at the Fayette library. Patrons can choose a book without knowing what’s inside other than a general category. The books are among those designated for removal so patrons can consider them gifts. In Morenci, new books and staff favorites were chosen from the stacks and must be returned. Patrons get a piece of chocolate, too, to take on their date, but no clue about their “date.” One reader said she really enjoyed her book for a few pages, but then lost interest—so typical for a blind date.

Melinda Drogowski wins culinary award 4.2

Written by David Green.

When Melinda Drogowski took the tour of the Lenawee Vo-Tech Center last year, she knew right then where she was headed.

Other members of Morenci’s sophomore class might not have been sure of their future, but for Melinda, the choice was clear. When she was able to enroll in  Vo-Tech classes, she would choose the hospitality program to get a start on becoming a chef.

It turned out to be a good choice. It’s been hard work, but she’s had some great experiences, learned a lot about the culinary business and she has excelled.

From a class of more than 20 students, she was chosen as a member of both Vo-Tech teams that recently competed in the state-wide ProStart program—teams that came home with third and fourth place finishes among a field of 18 competitors.

ProStart, explained hospitality instructor Corbett Day, is a two-year program that gives students the culinary and management skills needed for a career in the restaurant and food service industry.

Those classroom skills are put to the test once a year in the Michigan Restaurant Association ProStart Student Invitational. The 2008 competition took place in Lansing’s Sheraton Hotel March 8-10.

This is where students have to show respect for each other, practice good teamwork and show good listening skills, said team member Alec Rummler of Adrian.

In addition to Mr. Day’s instruction, students worked with chef Frank Marrara of Americrown at Michigan International Speedway. The class visited the kitchen there to work alongside the pro.

At the Sheraton, teams of four students had one hour to prepare a meal. The Lenawee team went with pan-seared yellow fin tuna, wrapped in seaweed and accompanied by a wasabi-pea coulis and a red pepper sauce. A Mediterranean salad was also prepared.

The effort netted a fourth-place finish, but the management team—again with Melinda as a member—did even better. The quiz bowl participation and case study project resulted in a third-place finish. Each team member was promised a $500 scholarship to the highly-regarded Johnson & Wales University culinary school.

She would like to put that scholarship to use after a couple of years at Washtenaw Community College where she would get some basics covered.

Melinda is already looking forward to second year classes at Vo-Tech where students will dig into some finer points of cooking, such as spices and sauces—all in an independent study format.

“They’re getting a new kitchen next year so it’s going to be even better,” Melinda said.

She’s also looking forward to job possibilities after graduation when the Pro-Start program is complete.

Classes end each day at 2:15 p.m., but that was far from the end of the day for several students learning the culinary arts. But with the competition over for the year, maybe there won’t be so many late nights for the young chefs.

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