CHS Chilli-Chatter #9

May 7, 2021

Bethel AME Church to Teach History for Years to Come

by Leah Lourenco

Nearly 150 years ago the Black community of Chillicothe worked together to fund and build the Bethel African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church in Chillicothe. It was the first of its kind to be built after the Civil war on the north side of the Missouri River. This church was an important part of local Black culture from the time it was built in 1868, to the time it was closed around 2010. Several years after its closing, the plan was to demolish this important piece of history. Ms. Pam Clingerman, the curator of the Grand River Historical Society Museum, along with the board of directors, led the efforts to save the church. The church building was moved through town September 18, 2018, to sit across from the museum. Since that time there has been considerable work done to restore the church and convert it to the Bethel Black History Museum.

Ms. Clingerman was kind in letting me do an in-person interview where I was able to tour the unfinished Bethel Black History Museum. There is an upstairs area, which is the main chapel of the church. This area already has displays, including information about the Black experience as well as the Quilt Exhibition. There are plans to add many more quilts to the walls of the chapel. There is also the basement area, which will house the Ron Wilder Traditional Arts Center, a place for classes to be held to teach traditional arts to the community.

The Black History Museum already portrays the struggles of the Black experience. The informational displays teach the horrors of the Middle Passage, the details of the Underground Railroad, and the truth about African textiles. The Quilt Exhibition outlines the use of quilts as a form of communication during the era of the Underground Railroad. During that era, there were many unique patterns that were used by safe houses to communicate with escaped slaves. They were used to communicate a warning or maybe the location of a friendly house. These quilts were a way to communicate and help escaped slaves, without raising attention from people who were proslavery. The Quilt Exhibition will eventually display a variety of these patterns.

Ms. Clingerman believes that the introduction of the Bethel Black History Museum will serve to give people a better understanding of the Black experience. Future generations will continue to appreciate the preservation of such important history. The grand opening of the Bethel Black History Museum will be by invitation only on May 29th. Among attendees will be donors and people who were members of the church prior to its closing--many having been members since childhood. The opening may also be attended by the last pastor of the church, who, after many years, will be able to see the preserved beauty of the historic church. The Bethel Black History Museum is projected to open to the general public on May 30th, so start counting down the days!

The Return of Vintage Fashion

by Kadence Shipers

We have seen many fashion trends come and go in our lifetime, but we never really think about where--or when--they originated. Most fashion in the 21st century has derived from other decades such as the ‘60s, ‘70s, ‘80s, and ‘90s. From scrunchies to corduroy pants, let us take a closer look at all our favorite fashion trends that obtained their popularity from previous decades.

Most of today’s fashion is resurrected from the 1980s: bike shorts, chunky sneakers, puffer jackets, mom jeans, scrunchies, and high-waisted jeans. However, we can see other decades come into play such as the 1950s with silk scarves, 1960s with tie-dye clothing and bell-bottom jeans, 1970s with corduroy and plaid, and the 1990s with hair clips, barrettes, halter tops, and platform shoes. Here is what you would look for and the specific decade it was revived from:


During the 1950s, silk scarves were very popular accessories for both men and women. They come in a wide range of colors and patterns. Today you can see them being worn as hair accessories, crop tops, and around the neck as they were intended to be worn.


The 1960s were known for the hippie look of tie-dye clothing and the bell-bottom jeans. The tie-dye shirts mostly included a spiral pattern and bell-bottom jeans usually fit tight at the top and flared out at the bottom.


The 1970s focused more on patterns and color rather than new types of clothing style. People usually sported plaid, corduroy, and darker shades of color (burgundy, olive green, and browns).


In the 1980s, denim was really popular as they had different styles of jeans; mom jeans and high-waisted jeans (bell-bottoms were also still being worn) were highly popular styles. You were also likely to see someone rocking large, chunky sneakers with an oversized puffer jacket or biker shorts, all while sporting a hair scrunchie.


The 1990s were mostly known for bright colors and accessories; platform shoes, barrettes, and butterfly hair clips were in high demand in this time period. Ladies were known to wear crop tops and halter tops, while men would wear leather and patterned button-up shirts.

Vintage clothing has remained popular throughout subsequent decades and is still used in mainstream fashion today. You can scan through your parents’ and grandparents’ closets and spot articles of clothing that were popular in their time, but also regained their popularity in the 21st century. It is up to you to decide what fashion is taken off the rack and what gets hung back up.

Journaling with Tiktok

by Draya Shady

During times of COVID-19 and self-isolation, we as students began to learn more about the world and about ourselves. In quarantine, one of the biggest questions was where do we go with our thoughts?

On TikTok, many people have taken up the hobby of journaling. Journaling can be an easy way to let your feelings out without people around to hear them. One account that is very popular is youjournal_ which has 348k followers.

This account gives you a daily journal prompt. Some recent prompts include: “What is something you could do forever and never get bored of?” “What is a moment you experienced that felt unreal?”

Many people find these journaling accounts and post their replies on their own accounts. When people share their personal responses to journaling with the world, it opens up the eyes of everyone around them. While people might believe that sharing your personal thoughts with the world is weird, many TikTokers have noticed that journaling not only expands your own mind but sharing it with others allows the people around you to feel comforted for relating their own experiences.

A recent post from the University of Rochester Medical Center states that “regularly writing down what’s on your mind can help you release emotions and make sense of what’s going on in your life. It can also help improve your relationships with others, lower your blood pressure, and decrease symptoms of depression.”

Overall, taking up the habit of writing in a journal is a brilliant way to express yourself with emotions and knowledge. It is a great way to reflect on your feelings, fears, concerns, and things that make you happy.

CHS End-of-Year Senior Activities

by Dimitri Dickerson

Although we tend to think that we have had a rough time this year, things don’t look so bad when we look at last year’s senior events. Instead of the tail end of senior year being a blur of activities with breakfasts, luncheons, rehearsals, and practices, the seniors of 2020 missed out on many of the usual end-of-year activities due to COVID-19.

Last year, Prom was postponed until July and was held outside. Last year's seniors missed out on the Senior Breakfast and were instead given gift bags with coupons for various businesses in town as well as with their senior favor. They did not get to participate in spring sports. They were not able to attend the Senior Assembly, the assembly at which the winners of various scholarships are announced. It was instead held online in a slideshow format. Last year's seniors also had an online Baccalaureate as opposed to the traditional one. Each part of the ceremony was taped individually and streamed to the students. An outdoor graduation ceremony was held in July instead of the traditional indoor ceremony. The senior barbeque and graduation parade, where the seniors parade past the elementary schools in their caps and gowns, were cancelled entirely along with the senior movie. Decision Day, a day when students wear a shirt from the college or business they will be attending next year, was instead replaced with a slideshow showing each senior in their chosen shirt. To make up for this lack of activities, teachers and other staff from the high school put up signs in each senior’s yard to recognize them.

The seniors of 2021 will be allowed to participate in all of the activities last year's seniors didn’t; however, family attendance to many of these events has been limited. For Grand March, each attendee received two tickets to admit family members. Graduation will be outside just like last year, but late reports say that attendance will not be limited since it’s an outdoor event.

Overall, we cannot call this year normal, but our end-of-year activities will be much closer to normal than last year’s graduating class.

Binge or Bust: Seaspiracy

by Lexie Walker

This week on Binge or Bust is Seaspiracy. A documentary on the streaming service, Netflix, took the world by storm with its wild claims about the effects of commercial fishing on the environment and the health of our oceans. The documentary features many wild statistics about fish population depletion, the ocean's role in mitigating global warming, and “sustainable” fishing companies failing to regulate their catching methods. To back up these very strong claims there were many interviews featured with top officials at some of the richest companies headlining the fishing industry. The main conclusion that the documentary draws is that eating fish and supporting the fishing industry is killing the ocean. To further solidify this notion in viewers’ minds, many graphic and polarizing scenes display the bloodbath that comes with commercial fishing.

The documentary follows a British filmmaker, Ali Tabrizi, as he travels the world to dig deeper into the true nature of the commercial fishing industry. He films many scenes of fishing barges, whaling voyages, and dolphin slaughter. As one can imagine, there has been major pushback following the documentary’s release. Many sources claim that it fails to accurately represent the aquaculture industry or other groups that would support commercial fishing at all. The documentary has also come under fire for using outdated statistics. While the fishing industry has failed at sustainability and clean practices in the past, efforts are being made to bring a brighter future to fishing; this was hardly represented in Seaspiracy.

While I did appreciate the attention brought to the downsides of commercial fishing, some of the intense scenes and relatively threatening nature of the film as a whole brought down its appeal. It felt like a fear-mongering tactic to scare the population into supporting the agenda of the film. I do think a majority of the points made were completely valid and a healthy ocean is the foundation of life on Earth, but the criminalization of the fishing industry, coupled with the failure to include many points of view, reduced the authentic feeling of the film. I suspect that a majority of people do not enjoy the thought of ocean species disappearing or an ocean too polluted to support life, but cutting all commercial fishing and driving people to completely eliminate seafood consumption is not realistic. Weigh in on the debate by watching Seaspiracy today.

Backpack Woes

by Emma Rule

The expression “a weight off your shoulders” simply does not apply to high school students. The further that I get into high school, I feel the heavier my backpack gets. I know that I am not alone in this feeling because I have heard of other students’ plight with backpack weight. The American Chiropractic Association dictates that students’ backpacks be no more than 10 percent of their weight: a 120-pound student should have no more than a 12-pound backpack; a 170-pound student should have no more than a 17-pound backpack and so on. When backpacks are worn incorrectly (over only one shoulder or too low and past your waist) or are too heavy, students lean forward to compensate; this can compress the spine and cause shoulder, neck, and back pain. It can also change a student’s posture which can influence balance in the long term.

In a survey taken at Chillicothe High School of 160 students, more than 85 felt their backpacks were too heavy all the time and another 48 felt it was too heavy some of the time. When asked how much their backpacks weighed, the majority of students said their backpacks weighed more than 20 pounds with the average weight being between 15-25 pounds--this is well over the 10 percent of body weight maximum. Why is this? When asked about what the heaviest things in their backpacks were, most students answered Chromebooks and textbooks. While the Chromebooks are important and beneficial to learning, the model of Chromebooks that the juniors and seniors carry are the heavier models. More students also added that their backpacks were made heavier by the textbooks that they carry with them.

While most would think to put the excess weight and the textbooks in a locker, that was not possible this year because of COVID-19. Students were not able to use their lockers in order to prevent hallway loitering. Even though students were not permitted to use the lockers early in the year, students in “regular” years have not used them much. With about six minutes between class periods, most students believe visiting a locker to be a waste of time. Also, students’ schedules rarely put them in the correct wing of the high school to pick something up from their locker as they pass through the hall on their way to class. This is not to say that lockers are not beneficial to students as they can hold things like coats, jackets, and extra notebook paper--it is a matter of luck. This is evident in the fact that over 90 percent of students do not use their lockers.

In this age of technology, it is surprising that students still carry so many paper-based items, along with their Chromebooks. It is a feat of strength and resilience that students continue to carry such weighty backpacks with them at all times. This is the kind of strength that will inspire the world and the coming generations in the future if only we can get over our back pain and take the weight off our shoulders.

Food Trends

by Claire Ripley

Trying any type of food can be exciting because of the flavorful taste and appetizing look, but adding style or a modern twist to the cuisine can add a fun aspect to tasting. From years past trends involving food have gone everywhere from rainbow colored food to charcoal colored ice cream and waffle cones, to rolled ice cream and foods that contain dry ice. Now, Tik Tok and other social media platforms are shining a light on more trends including whipped coffee and cloud bread. No matter what the trend is at any given point, Americans seem to be willing to try it.

Recently, the social media app TikTok has been a hotspot for the latest food trends. One of the newest trends is a baked feta pasta dish, which has now earned the name “Tik Tok Baked Feta Pasta.” The reason for the dish’s popularity is that this recipe is easy and can be done quickly. In a pan full of cherry tomatoes there is a block of feta cheese in the middle covered with olive oil. It is then placed in the oven for 40 minutes as the pasta cooks; once done you combine the pasta with the cooked tomatoes and feta, and stir.

Charcuterie boards are making a comeback, and it's big. Designing a slab of wood topped with deli meat, a variety of cheeses, various fruits and other little snacks has gone viral and has become some people’s full-time jobs. Charcuterie boards are a spotlight for Instagram influencers, getting the title of “do it for the gram,” meaning showing your followers how beautiful these boards can be. Not only are charcuterie boards delicious, but very aesthetically pleasing.

During quarantine many new recipes and ideas of “spicing up” foods were made. One of these taking over TikTok was whipped coffee. Again, the idea of this is that it is aesthetically pleasing. To make whipped coffee, you take a frother and whip together coffee grounds and milk until it gets to the consistency you would like. Then you fill a glass with milk and top it with your new whipped coffee.

Around the same time as whipped coffee was taking over, so was cloud bread. Cloud bread is fluffy, giant puffs of bread. It only calls for three ingredients: sugar, egg whites and cornstarch. Cloud bread is basically a baked, fluffy meringue. It is known as a simple recipe, but is also a fun and interesting way to make and eat bread.

Food trends are changing rapidly and it's hard to keep up, but scrolling through TikTok could just make you an expert cook. Not only are most of these recipes easy, they are fun and the result should be interesting.