Christmas in Puerto Rico

Christmas (Día de Navidad) is a popular holiday celebrated in Puerto Rico. Christmas celebrations in Puerto Rico begin in early December and continues until almost February. The holiday is celebrated by joyous music and with family and friends and by consuming large amounts of food. In Puerto Rico the majority of people go on Parrandas (caroling). Three Kings’ Day is basically a second Christmas Day for the people of Puerto Rico. Many cities in Puerto Rico host festivals and parades on Three Kings’ Day to celebrate the event. Three men will dress as the three kings and give out gifts to children. All in all, Christmas in Puerto Rico is all about spending time with family and friends and enjoying each other company.

By: Amia Shyree Frazier





Dia De Los Muertos in Mexico

Dia de los Muertos

Dia de los Muertos means the day of the dead. Dia de los Muertos is celebrated from October 31-November 2 in Mexico. It is also celebrated by Hispanics in the U.S. This holiday is being celebrated because this is when Hispanics honor and remember their dead loved ones. During this particular days they are not sad. They are thinking of their loved one in the most happiest ways. This is a very special holiday. This is when they have colorful skeletons. They have altars built in the room. The altars are used to invite and welcome the spirits into the home. On the altars are special foods and also things that their loved ones once liked. The foods that are on their is sugar skulls, Pan de Muertos, a special bread for the season. They also have flowers on it, the name of the flowers is cempasuchil. Some people might think that Halloween and Dia de los Muertos are the same because they both come from death, but they’re different holidays.  So next time when you see a colorful skeleton you will know what day it is. 

-Jasmine Grier

Christmas in Jamaica

In Jamaica, Christmas Eve is “ grand market.” In every town and city in the country, there is a cross between a festival and market. On the day of the “grand market,” Jamaicans go shopping for Christmas foods, sweets, toys and other things. At 6:00 pm the evening part of Grand Market starts and   ends the next morning. Its street vendors selling food like jerk chicken, boiled corn and sweets like candy canes and  sugarcanes. Then some of the people will go to a midnight mass church service and  others will party all night. Lots of people will go to a church service on Christmas day before the end of the grand market. The Christmas day meal is usually prepared on Christmas Eve. They eat curry goat, stewed oxtail, rice and peas. – Aurielle Hinton

White Day Asia

A Husband giving White Day gift to his wife

As all of us should know, the day of romance we call Valentine‘s Day is about the many people who exchange cards, candy, gifts or flowers with their special “valentine.” We also know that Valentine‘s Day is widely celebrated basically everywhere around the world, but did you know that there is another holiday that comes one month after it, that works in similar ways to each other except its all about the guys giving gifts?

You’re already aware that Valentine’s Day is a few months away, and Easter is the next chocolate holiday to come after it. But Valentine’s Day would not be over just yet in other places, a holiday celebrated on March 14, one month after Valentine‘s Day is called White Day. In Japan and other Asian countries including Taiwan, South Korea and China, will celebrate White Day.

 Typically, women shower men with chocolate and gifts on Valentine’s Day, and White Day is when men are supposed to return the favor by buying two to three times more expensive gifts for the women on White Day. The name stems from the giving of primarily white giftslike white chocolate and lingerie, by men as an answer to Valentine’s Day gifts. In recent years, the exclusively white nature of the holiday has changed to include both dark and white chocolate, other shades of lingerie and non-chocolate candies like lollipops. Many convenience stores set up large displays out in front of their shops, with a heavy focus on chocolate and chocolate candies like Ferrero RocherTwix and Chupa Chups.

There is a strong tradition of women giving chocolates to men on Valentines Day. There are two types of chocolates, “Giri-choco” (obligation chocolate), and “Honmei-choco.” Giri-choco is meant to be for friends, colleagues, bosses, and close male friends.“Giri” means obligation meaning that Giri-choco has no romantic meaning involved. On the other handHonmei-choco is given to a boyfriend, lover, or husband with true love.
Here is an interesting fact to know about:
 Japanese women often prepare the Honmei-choco by themselves as many of them think it is not true love if they just buy the readymade chocolate at shops.

Another interesting fact to know about: Lovers in Taiwan have not one but three Valentine’s Days to celebrate, which just goes to show you that Taiwan is a little island big on romance. People celebrate the Western Valentine’s Day on February 14th, the Chinese lunar Qi-Xi on the 7th day of the 7th month of the lunar calendar, and the one that originated in Japan, White Day. -Donato Castrejon-Solis

Christmas In Mexico

The people of Mexico prepare and celebrate Christmas a little earlier than most of the people in the United States. They have their own traditions. A lot of them like to celebrate 9 nights earlier up until Christmas Eve so they start on December 16 because of the posadas and continue to celebrate every night until December 24.

The posadas are when the neighborhoods gather together and visit a different host house or store each night. The people at the host house give out gifts and food, Normally they give gifts for the kids (such as toys.) The food they give out to the many people includes tamales, empanadas, and bread. The next night, everyone meets at that place then walks together to the next house or store. On the way, they like to sing songs. This  most likely the same routine until December 24, which is often the largest gathering.

People walking with candles during a posada.


Festival of Deepawali at Nepal

Festival of Deepawali

Tihar is one of the most well known Hindu holiday/festivals  throughout Nepal and in different parts of India. Tihar is also known as the Festival of Lights. Tihar is mainly divided into 5 days in October.

Day 1 is known as Kag Tihar which means “crow worship day.” Crows are worshiped and fed early in the morning. People leave different food items outside for crows to eat. Crow is considered to be the messenger of death because back on the days at World War I and II Nepal did not have the kind of technology to inform or get any information about Nepalese soldiers, so every morning if they heard the crow making a specific sound they believed that their loved one is no longer with them.

Day 2 is Kukur Tihar which means “festival of dogs.” People celebrate this because they believe that dogs are the the most loyal friend of mankind. Dog Puja  is done by putting a red tika powder on their forehead and a flower garland around the neck and offering them their favorite foods. Male dogs are worshiped most because people believe that dogs can see danger and death coming. Usually whenever dogs cry, people believe that someone is going to leave them and go far away where they cannot return back with them.

Day 3 is Gai Tihar which means “cow worship day.” Cows are worshiped with light sesame oil, garlands of flowers and the color red all over their body. In Hindu culture, people who don’t have their own mother worship cows as their own mother because they believe that they get older by drinking their milk. Others worship Lakshmi, a god and the mother of wealth and prosperity. Later in the afternoon they clean their houses and decorate with flowers and lights. Then when they are done they make small footprints in front of their main entry in belief that Lakshmi has  entered their house, then the family comes together, worships and asks for blessings. When the night comes, people start to light the candles and electrical lights and hang out with family and friends.

Day 4 is Goru Tihar which is also know as worshiping Oxen. On that day, people perform three different puja (worship). People also do govardhan puja which is done by making a hill of govardhan parbat which is literally cow dung. People in Nepal give much importance to cow dung because they use this for light at night and they paint their house floor with it. They believe that without this their festival is incomplete.

Day 5,  which is the last day of the festival, is Bhai Tika, which means “celebration of brothers.” On this day, sisters put different kinds of colors on the foreheads of her brothers, to ensure his long life and health. Then, brothers do the same thing for their sisters and give them gifts and money. On this day, brothers who are far away from their sisters try to make it to their sister’s place and share happiness. Some brothers don’t have a sister, so they go to the temple or they also “adopt” their friend’s sister or go to their neighbor and ask for favor to become their sister. Later on at night people go out and have parties. – Lachu Adhikai


The name Kwanzaa comes  from the phrase “matunda ya kwanza” which means “first fruits” in Swahili. families celebrate Kwanzaa in its own way, but celebrations often include songs and dances, African

drums, storytelling, poetry reading, and a large traditional meal. On each of the seven nights, the family gets the candles and a child lights one of the candles on the candle holder. The principles are values of African culture which contribute to building and reinforcing community among African-Americans. Kwanzaa also has seven basic symbols which represent values and concepts reflective of African culture. These are some of the symbols.

Unity:Umoja (oo–MO–jah)
To strive for and maintain unity in the family, community, nation, and race.

Self-determination: Kujichagulia (koo–gee–cha–goo–LEE–yah)
To define ourselves, name ourselves, create for ourselves, and speak for ourselves.

Collective Work and Responsibility: Ujima (oo–GEE–mah)
To build and maintain our community together and make our brother’s and sister’s problems our problems and to solve them together.

Cooperative Economics: Ujamaa (oo–JAH–mah)
To build and maintain our own stores, shops, and other businesses and to profit from them together.

Purpose: Nia (nee–YAH)
To make our collective vocation the building and developing of our community in order to restore our people to their traditional greatness.

Creativity: Kuumba (koo–OOM–bah)
To do always as much as we can, in the way we can, in order to leave our community more beautiful and beneficial than we inherited it.

Faith: Imani (ee–MAH–nee)
To believe with all our heart in our people, our parents, our teachers, our leaders, and the righteousness and victory of our struggle.

source :



Culture Fair is April 2nd

By Christina Izquierdo and Canisha Crawford

The Culture Fair will be held at Garinger from 2:30-5 p.m. April 2.

Ms.Stanley, who is in charge of promoting the fair, is looking for people to perform such as poets, rappers and singers. She is getting help from her fellow students and trying to plan for the weather that day so events can be held outside and food and donations inside the building.

She said people should be involved in the culture fair because we are all from some where, and we have not embraced other cultures as we should. We should get to know and understand each other from different backgrounds.

Those who want to get involved should see Mr. Shelton or Ms. Stanley.

Garinger’s first All-American

Tresor Mbuyu scores a goal in the second round of playoffs against Watauga HS. (photo by:tarheelsportsphotography)
Tresor Mbuyu scores a goal in the second round of playoffs against Watauga HS.                                                                (photo by:tarheelsportsphotography)
Mbuyu warms up before the second round of playoffs.(photo by:tarheelsportsphtography)
Mbuyu warms up before the second round of playoffs.     (photo by:tarheelsportsphtography)

By Francisco Gonzalez
Earlier this season, senior Tresor Mbuyu was nominated for Top Drawer Soccer All American team and put on the watch list. On Friday October 24 he was officially named All American, making him the first All American at Garinger and the only player from North Carolina to be on the All American team for 2014. On Sunday December 7 the NSCAA, the official national soccer coaches association, also named Mbuyu “All American.”

“It wasn’t a surprise for me” said David Garrett, the Garinger varsity soccer coach, “Tresor is one of the best players I’ve seen… his passion and dedication make him what he is.”

Mbuyu had an outstanding season, beating his records from his previous season. Last season Mbuyu was all conference, all state, the Charlotte Observer’s Player of the year and had a total of 34 goals. This year Mbuyu earned All conference, All Region, All State, Charlotte Observer player of the year again and All American for Top Drawer Soccer and the NHSCAA. He scored 56 goals in his favor, making him the top scorer in the state.

“Its an honor to be nominated for All American and without my teammates I would have never made it to where I am this season.” Mbuyu takes great pride in his team, he said he knows its not just the individual achievements but the team effort  that counts.

The Wildcats made it to the third round of playoffs this year, the furthest any Garinger soccer team has ever made it. This being Mbuyu’s senior year, he hoped to win a state championship.Although the wildcats season came to a tragic end, as they lost 3-0 to the now state champions Reagan High, Mbuyu said he is proud of what they accomplished.

“I just wanted to finish the season off strong,” he says. With his high school season over and college recruiters on the hunt for Mbuyu, he says he hopes to be in college next year (he has a few offers already), continuing to do what he does best which is “playing the beautiful game of soccer.”

Wildcat named Player of the Year

By Jaden Jones

Garinger student Tresor Mbuyu was named the Charlotte Observer’s Player of the Year in men’s soccer. – Photo by Jaden Jones

From birth he was destined for greatness, one would say.

Charlotte Observer player of the year, Tresor Mbuyu, an all-state junior from Garinger High School, has achieved greatness all his life.

The future seems bright for the gifted young forward from Congo.
Moving from Congo at a young age of 13, Tresor had begun his interest in the sport of soccer. Tresor’s opportunity to play for the Garinger Wildcats has earned him the respect of his teammates and coach. When asked how he feels to have this amazing honor, Tresor simply replied, “I am thankful for having great players and this was the most amazing season I have ever had in my life.”

Tresor’s respect for  his teammates, peers, and his coach is enormous. “They’re proud of me and they were excited to win the conference but we didn’t win it all,” Tresor said.
Tresor was also asked about the other awards he has achieved over the years and how they compare to this award, and he simply answered, “It’s kind of the same, but this is my first time winning Player of the Year.”
Another question was asked about the support of Tresor’s friends, teammates, coaches, and family. He replied, “My coaches train me and I also train myself. My friends and family also help me train.” His motto is “I learn about life with a soccer ball at my feet.”
Tresor’s father also impacts him on and off the field.

“My dad helps me with training and he also helps me with staying in school,” he said.

With the awareness of his future approaching, Tresor has not yet made a choice of the college he would like to attend.  “I want to play for college and go play for the pros.”
Tresor was asked of his final thoughts over young his career. He replied, “Without God I would not be where I am now.”

Born to play

Tresor Mbuyu
Tresor Mbuyu

By Vanessa Robles

As early as he can remember, he’s been touching a soccer ball.

His parents are proud of him and his dad attends every soccer game he can.

Throughout his life he’s been asked to go play in Europe, and he is only at an age of 16.

Playing as forward in his past and present teams, Tresor Mbuyu has always has of luck of scoring goals. Tresor says he doesn’t know what motivates his goals, he just scores them.

Coming from Congo at an age of 13, he started playing soccer there and still continues playing so he can grow in skill.

As of now, Tresor attends an academy named One7, where he has been honored to travel and play in  such games as the regionals in Virginia and nationals in Chicago.

Garinger High is the school Tresor attends. The school has also given him an opportunity to play in the school team.

“If I had to choose between school and soccer, I’d choose soccer,’’ claims Tresor. As a junior, he is close to graduation and plans to play college soccer. Tresor is not decided on what college he wants to attend but he’s sure that he wants to make it to college.

His favorite player, a Brazilian named Lucas Moura Rodrigues, is also a part of his inspiration.

At the end of a game, Tresor’ s dad gives him words of inspiration, such as “you did great, I’m proud of you son,” and that is what touches him the most, Tresor said.. The emotion after each win touches Tresor as well as his coaches, family and friends.

‘’It simply did not take countless hours of training, money, extra time, etc… For me to be a good player somehow I learned all about life and the game with a ball at my feet,’’ he said.

Soldier honors Garinger with a patriotic gift

By Kimberly Monge

David Breton and his fellow soldiers hold the flag in front of the helicopter in Afghanistan.
David Breton and his fellow soldiers hold the flag in front of the helicopter in Afghanistan.

A flag from more than 7,000 miles away was presented at Garinger on Friday, November 8, thanks to a Garinger teacher and her son.

Doreen Bourque, an OCS teacher, received a flag and a certificate from her son David Breton, who is in the Army National Guard and stationed in Afghanistan. The flag was flown at an American Army base in Jalalabad, Afghanistan for 1.1 hours on September 27, 2013.

David Breton is a mechanical engineer and a pilot in the army. David sent the flag to Garinger because he wanted to inspire students, especially in JROTC, to achieve their dreams and to show respect for his job and United States. He hopes it will be meaningful to those who want to join the army straight after they graduate from high school.

“Every young man and woman should see it and think about all the people
that came before them that made the choice to serve their country. I made the
decision while I was in high school and not a day goes by where I think back
to then and thank God for all that I have today,” Breton wrote in an email to his mother.

Why is Garinger receiving such an honor? Breton sent the flag to Ms.Bourque because he wants to show respect for her as a teacher at Garinger as well as a mother.

At 1 p.m.  Friday there was a tribute to veteran’s ceremony at the flag pole in front of the school. Mr. Cofield played the National Anthem, while JROTC cadets raised the flag. Captain Brown gave an overview about the importance of honoring the veterans. Each veteran was saluted while their name was announced.

Captain Brown presented the flag and Ms. Bourque presented the framed certificate to Principal Drye.   The certificate recognizes Garinger’s support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Principal Drye gave a speech about being grateful to receive two honorable gifts and appreciating the veterans serving our country. Lastly Captain Brown gave a closing remark.

“My son has served in Iraq and Afghanistan as well, and our flag represents that freedom isn’t free. There’s a cause. There’s an ultimate sacrifice that our young men and women put on the line everyday of their lives. So, freedom isn’t free,” said Captain Brown.

Ms. Bourque said that her son gift is a legacy that will inspire someone else who wants to join the army. She said when she sees the flag; she feels that her son is here on campus with her.

November 8 was a special day for David Breton because it happened to be his 36th birthday. It is the same day that we celebrated his gift to us.

“I’ve deployed three times now and sure it’s hard, but I think of my family and how I’ve paid for them and myself to live in our Country. I love my country and I serve to show it,” Breton wrote.

Montagnard’s struggling life

By Diu Romah

The Montagnard people of Vietnam are the people who live in the mountains, which is why the French called them “mountain people.”  They live in Vietnam’s Central Highlands.

Montagnard includes five languages: Jrai, Rhade, Mnong, Koho and Bahnar. Their traditions are the same, except they are different languages.  They are all having different struggles through life; it is like part of their survival. Vietnamese people are the people who have a better life. They live in a richer way, which is why the Montagnard people work for them and earn enough  money to get food.

A Montagnard teen’s life is very different from the teen’s life in the United States. Teens struggle through school and jobs. They do not have enough food; all they have are  potatoes and rice. Their parents  have to work for Vietnamese people to get meals for their if their kids go to school.

Some of the parents die young and early because they can’t handle working too much with not enough food. Some kids go to work by helping their parents grow crops. Teenagers who do go to school often do not have enough money to pay for their supplies. Some teenagers’ parents end up not letting their kids go to school; they just want their kids to work and be able to have their own money.

Teens in the United States have a better life than teens there. Teens that are born in the United States act a lot cooler, and very differently than teens back there.

They go to school, but then they have free time. Here they stay busy by working and focusing on their school, but back there the teens don’t focus on their school or education – they just don’t care.

That is why many Montagnard people move to America. They were poor and their parents just wanted their kids to go to school and be able to have a good education, and be successful. Teens back there struggle more because even though they are young, they still have to work. In addition, they have to go around searching for food for their family to eat.

The school back there does not have as much stuff as in the United States. United States has calculators, but there the school does not provide any calculators and it is much harder, especially if they are in high school.

Some of the teens just don’t want to go to school. Kids can drop out of school at any age, it does not matter if you are young or not. In addition, it does not matter if they attend school at a higher age, they do not go by age as in the United States.

They also allow kids to drive before 18 years old. If you know how to drive, then you just have to drive, you do not have to get your permit and driver license.

Life in Vietnam

By Khon Kosor and Hung Rocham

Have you ever stepped foot in Vietnam?
Vietnam is an eastern Asian country near the Pacific Ocean. Once you step your feet in Vietnam, you can visit beautiful places.

If you go into the villages, there are many tribes which are the native people in Vietnam. You can learn about their culture and how they live their lives.

The native people in Vietnam are called Montagnards, which means “mountain people.” In Vietnam, most people speak two languages, which is Jarai, the native language, and Vietnamese, which is the second language that we learn in school.

School in Vietnam is very different from the U.S. Most kids walk to school or ride bicycles. There are two different sessions of school, which are mornings (7-11 a.m.) and afternoons (1-4 p.m.)

We have recess during school time, but there is no free lunch in school. If you want food during school, either you bring it from home or buy in the small stores around the school.

Some of the teachers in Vietnam are very strict. We have to wear uniforms, but if your uniform is dirty or your hands are dirty the teacher will hit you with a long and thin stick.

In the villages, most kids do not have an education. Most Montagnards do not go to school because their parents cannot afford it, so they start working at an early age.

Life is hard in Vietnam but it is also a beautiful country to visit. Most kids enjoy their lives during night time. The moon is very bright. Most kids come out and play around midnight. They light up a fire and just enjoy their time. You can hear every sound. We let our dogs, chickens and other animals just run around. We get fresh water from a pond or river that is about 20 minutes or more from our home.

It so sad how kids in Vietnam miss out the opportunity of education and in the U.S people have free education and many don’t take advantage of it.

We should be happy what we have here because in other countries most people do not have what we have.

The Cultural Fair

Karina Cortez, left, and Ms. Perreras, right, performing at the Cultural Fair. Photo by Keonna Wilson

By Eric Salinas and Keonna Wilson

On March 28th the feel of success and enjoyment was present in the cultural fair.

A large crowd was attracted by the scent of the diverse types of food, vivid colors from different flags and music from different countries. The cultural fair is an event that started in 2012, at Garinger High School it has been arranged by Ms. Perreras.

This portrays the great cultural diversity that is present in our school.
Students and teachers that volunteered were a great part of this event. Many of them made expositions of the country they originated from or the country that they were interested in. Some people even brought some of the traditional food from their countries and they also wore some of the traditional clothing.

Attendees were able to learn new things from different countries.The event ended with the performances of some of the students who volunteered.