Archive by Author

Nutrition For The Soul: McPherson Community Garden Brings Fresh Food and Unity

23 Nov

A community garden may just seem like a way to make an area look nice, but the impacts actually go deeper than you’d think.

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Spooky Makeup to Kick Off Spooky Season

14 Oct

Oliver tries something new with their makeup to prepare for Halloween.

“Pride is Education”: What LGBTQ+ Pride Means to the Community

30 Sep

On September 25, 2021, Tower Grove held its first pride festival since 2019, where members of the LGBTQ+ community (and allies) reflected on what pride means to them.

“I Almost Failed My Classes” How Online Learning Effects Mental Health and Productivity

20 Sep

Some had a positive experience using zoom and canvas to do all of their schoolwork back in 2020, but others feel as though their time in online school was damaging to their mental well being.


From Live Animals to Weapons: The Reality of Donation Intake

17 Sep



Noah: Ezekiel LaMantia works at a thrift store, where he handles donation intake.

Ezekiel: My name’s Ezekiel LaMantia, not only am I a cashier but sometimes I work in the community donation center, also known as the CDC.

N: You may be wondering, how much stuff gets donated to a thrift store on a regular basis?

E: We have a 900lb cart times multiple carts a day, I’d say about 5,000lbs of stuff a day, possibly more. If we get multiple soft carts a day plus multiple big pieces of furniture which weigh a few hundred pounds, and then hard carts are between 600 and 800 lbs, and we get 2-5 carts of each per day. So I’d say about 5,000lbs of product or more per day.

N: Working in the donation center also means Ezekiel comes across some unusual items

E: Weirdest thing I’ve seen donated [was] probably an urn with residue. We also get people donating picture frames still with family pictures. We’ve gotten canned food donated. Somebody also tried to donate their pet bird, cage and all.

N: This job may sound simple, but it can get dangerous more often than one may realize.

E: We do get sharps donated, like if people are diabetic and they leave something in a jacket and donate the jacket, then we always have to check pockets. People will safety pin clothes, but then when they donate it not take the pins out. We’ve had swords, knives, guns, bow and arrows, crossbows. We get fireworks frequently and matches frequently and then we have to drop them in a pitcher of water in the break room. One time somebody donated a piece of furniture that had bed bugs and it infested all the other furniture in our department and we had to throw a lot of product away ,cause that sh*t’s nasty.

N: Although not exactly dangerous, workers in the donation center also encounter some unexpected guests.

E: We frequently get birds and squirrels stuck in the store because our front doors are sliding doors so if they stay open too long, animals just walk their way in.

N: Overall, Ezekiel enjoys his job, and believes thrift stores like the one he works at can provide a lot for a community, and he’s happy to be an essential part of their operation.