Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Why You Should Have Honey Bees in Your Garden

by: Gavin Prumatico

Honey bees are a very important pollinator in your garden! Without bees, we would not have a large crop of fruits and vegetables. Bees pollinate 1/3 of our food, isn’t that crazy! I personally have three honey bee hives and I am a certified beekeeper by the state. I keep them close to my garden and they pollinate my flowers, herbs, vegetables, citrus trees, etc.

Not only do honey bees provide a calming presence but they are very busy workers. Without a honey bee pollinating your plants you would have to give a chance for the wind to fertilize your vegetation. Wind pollination is very uncommon and only happens around 12% of the time. I myself am so glad I have my three hives because without them I would not have any vegetables. I would suggest getting two beehives because when you first start out something may go wrong with one of the hives. you still have the second hive you can use to help the first hive if something goes wrong.

As the honey bees cross-pollinate, your garden will end up with more flowers. This happens because pollination is needed in order for flowers to produce seeds. Bees are one of nature’s best pollinators! Can you believe one single flower pollinates 300 million flowers a day! That’s a lot of flowers!

Honey bees have been disappearing in large numbers for many years. Every year we lose about 30% of honey bees in the world. If you want to get into beekeeping I have to say that the beekeeping communities are the most helpful and kind people you will ever meet! I 100% recommend that you should become a beekeeper to these little fascinating creatures! I am not going to lie, beekeeping is an expensive hobby but it is completely worth it!

The first year of beekeeping is all about learning from your mistakes and getting a general understanding of the care of honey bees. The second-year is the year you get to collect your honey. The honey can not be harvested in the first year because they need it to survive the upcoming winter.  But when you do your daily checkups in the hive there may be some beeswax out of place. For example under one of the frames. Then you may harvest it to make products (lip balm, candles, and etc.) or you can harvest it and use it as decoration!

Last but not least honey bees are very friendly. They only sting when they feel very threatened! So make sure to be calm and they will usually reflect that behavior to you!

If you have any questions or concerns about anything please feel free to email me at
250223@northwarren.org! My name is Gavin Prumatico. Have a great rest of your day!

A Gob of Historical Significance

By: Nick Pollard

Throughout my various pilgrimages to the hallowed halls of the Catherine Dixon Hoffman Library, adjacent to our very own North Warren, I’d often find myself perusing the local history department. This almost morbid curiosity for anything historical has captured my general interest for some time now, slowly evolving into a somewhat obsession for anything obscure in nature. Beit traditional American History, to ancient civilizations, to even true-crime cases, I've always had this profound fascination with finding out why something happened and what changed because of it. 

One book that caught my eye, in particular, was from the American Bicentennial in 1976, which detailed up until then, fascinating stories about the history of Blairstown and many other miscellaneous side stories. Picking up that felt, faded-red book for the first time, I wasn’t expecting anything too profound. But as I kept reading, I was surprised to learn more and more about all these significant events just lost to the sands of time. The following issues of The Patriot Press will contain stories like the one I’m about to tell you, and continue until I either run out of material, or I’m finally run out of town. Whichever comes first…

North Warren’s always brought out strong opinions from the “well informed” locals. Most of them regard the constant flounderings by the administration, but even its presence seems to spark a controversial debate between townspeople. This isn’t a new thing by any means; flipping through that bicentennial book (past the five pages devoted to murders) to the section regarding the newly built high school revealed a myriad of information regarding the locals' then-feelings about North Warren. 

The multiple planning meetings open to the public only garnered a staggering twenty (or fewer) people in attendance, and the common consensus at the time was a mix of apathy and utter vexation. Many people didn’t like the idea of a bigger, more expensive school in their town, and others didn’t like the idea of a modern complex being built in historic Blairstown, on what was a family-owned farm nonetheless. Others simply didn’t really care or didn’t have much of an initiative to do anything, good or bad. 

Eventually, after much deliberation, the school opened its doors in 1971 with a student body composed of four local townships. After a while, the townspeople grew to accept North Warren as being a crucial part of the town, and many local alumni in the area say their time here was some of the best in their lives. In closing, it was an interesting subject to look into, given that public opinion now isn’t really in North Warren’s favor and many people would rather just go to Blair (it’s pretty easy, just have your mom work there or be a multimillionaire).

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

Finding Motivation in the Final Stretch of School

By Grace Pereira

    The long wind-down, the repetitive school days, and the never-ending workload becomes increasingly daunting as the year progresses. With school more than halfway over and summer only a couple months away, motivation may become difficult to obtain. Here are some ways to stay motivated and hardworking throughout the last months:

  1. Make a to-do list: write all of your assignments down, so you stay organized. You can manage your time and put the amount of work into perspective. When you check each item off, you will feel more accomplished

  2. Find free time to do something you enjoy after the work is done.

  3. Participate in class so that you can become more engaged in school, and so your time in school does not drone on without meaning

  4. Complete your homework early so you can focus on fun things. Do it right after school so you aren’t waiting for the last minute. Motivate yourself with a rewarding activity after.

  5. Get enough sleep and eat healthily, so your body can also feel good during this time.

  6. Keep a daily journal of the positive experiences of each day. Instead of focusing on negativity, you can make your days more meaningful.

  7. Make a playlist of your favorite music to listen to while you do your homework.

  8. Know you are not alone. Share your feelings with a close friend, and form a study group so you all can stay on task.

Although it may be difficult, don’t give up now. You have to focus on the end goal! If you successfully get through school for a little while longer, you can successfully get to summer without stress.

Wednesday, March 30, 2022

Recipe Reviews by Devon Benzaia

 Welcome back! My name is Devon Benzaia and I’m a writer for the Patriot Press. It’s been a long time since my last review, but I’m back with a bang of a recipe- Reece’s Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake from the Pioneer Woman herself, Ann Marie Drummond.

For this recipe, you will need the following ingredients:


  • ½ cup cocktail peanuts

  • 30 chocolate cookies (from Oreos)

  • 2 tbsp light brown sugar (regular brown sugar works just fine as well)

  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted


  • 48-ounce blocks of cream cheese

  • ½ cup sour cream

  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter

  • 1 cup granulated sugar

  • ¼ tsp salt

  • 4 large eggs

  • ⅔ cup heavy whipping cream


  • ½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

  • ⅓ cup heavy whipping cream

  • OPTIONAL: I cut up some extra peanuts, cut up Reece’s peanut butter cups to create a border around the top of the cheesecake, and added a dash of salt across the top 

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350°F and tightly wrap a 9-inch springform pan with foil. 

Step 2: Place the peanuts in a food processor and pulse until roughly chopped. Add the cookies and light brown sugar, and pulse until finely ground. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles the texture of wet sand.

Step 3: Transfer the mixture to the pan and press it with the bottom of a glass so the crust rises about 1 inch up the side of the pan. 

Step 4: Place the pan inside the oven and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool while making the filling, reducing the oven temperature to 325°F. 

Step 5: In a bowl, mix the cream cheese and sour cream on medium low speed until totally smooth, for about 3 minutes. Add the peanut butter, sugar, and salt, beating at the same speed until combined.

Step 6: With the mixer running, add the eggs one at a time until fully incorporated. Make sure to scrape the sides of the bowl to incorporate everything into the batter. Finally, mix the heavy whipping cream until combined.


Step 7: Pour the batter into the crust and tap/jiggle the pan to level the batter.

Step 8: Boil 8 cups of water and place into a larger pan, allowing the water to rise 1 inch. Place the cheesecake pan inside the larger pan full of water and bake for 75-80 minutes. If needed, add more hot water as time goes on. 

Step 9: When the cheesecake is done baking, crack the oven and turn off the heat to prevent the cheesecake from cracking apart. After 1 hour, remove it from the water bath.

Step 10: Chill the cheesecake for 6 hours-overnight. 

Step 11: To make the chocolate topping, place the chocolate chips in a bowl. Microwave the cream until very hot for 1 minute and pour it over the chocolate. Let it stand for 10 minutes and then stir until it is fully melted. 

Step 12: Pour the ganache over the cake, spreading it with a spatula. Feel free to decorate however you’d like, and refrigerate until you are ready to serve. Enjoy!

Review: This recipe tasted absolutely delicious; it was so difficult to keep myself from eating the entire thing by myself. While it was a lot of work, and my first time making cheesecake, I do think it was definitely worth it. There’s a little bit of everything with this dessert, and any cheesecake enthusiast would be delighted to have it. The water bath was quite difficult and I would advise that you really do make sure that your foil is tightly wrapped to prevent the water from seeping in. That happened to me in a small area of my cake which made it temporarily soggy, but dried as the cake was left out to cool. The foil made the edges of my cheesecake not so smooth-looking, but I’m not sure of a way to prevent that. Overall, this recipe is super tasty and I recommend it 10/10 if you have some time on your hands!

The Gardner's Insight Column by Gavin Prumatico

Spring is Here

Spring is here, can’t you smell it in the air? The first day of spring was March 20th, and the day before that, I got a lot of work done with all of my garden work. This November, I got a bunch of Tulip bulbs that I started in my grow tent. Almost every single one of the Tulip bulbs sprouted and my brother and I planted them in my garden. A few weeks ago I got Iris bulbs and planted all of those in front of my greenhouse in my garden as well. 

Some Spring Flowers that should be blooming in the next few weeks are Snowdrops, Primrose, Hyacinth, Tulips, and many more! On my walks around Blairstown, I have seen Snowdrops blooming around the area and Hyacinths getting ready to bloom. Around Easter, stores like Home Depot should be selling spring flowers. If you missed your chance to get the bulbs started last year then you can purchase them this year to have nice beautiful flowers in your yard. As a result of buying them from a big-box store, the blooming Hyacinths will cost a lot more than the bulbs that were not started in November.

During spring, I am going to make and sell spring flower arrangements. I will be selling these flower arrangements and many other products starting around Easter. This Easter I am going to sell homemade chapstick, starter plants, and so much more. I also sell homemade wreaths that have different arrangements depending on the season. Last but not least I also sell farm fresh chicken eggs that you can taste the difference in compared to the eggs that come from the grocery store.

Last but not least, in a few weeks around Mother’s Day I have to plant 300+ flower bulbs. As you can see, spring is a very busy season both with my garden and FFA. Hopefully, I have or will inspire you to start a garden and start producing food for your own family. Once you taste vegetables from a garden you won’t ever want to go to the grocery store again. Especially when the produce is organic with no pesticides.

For those of you who garden or want to learn more about gardening, I have a Facebook garden group. The name of the group is “Gavin’s Garden Group” if you would like to join. In this group, I post content including my flowers and vegetables I grow. I also post pictures of my progress of a variety of plants throughout the season. Hopefully, I see you guys join, even if you just want to browse the beautiful photos. Have a great day!

Friday, March 4, 2022

From the Gardening Columnist Gavin Prumatico: The Benefits of Growing a Garden

     Did you know that growing a garden has many mental and physical benefits? As most of you know growing a garden can provide fresh produce which provides a healthy lifestyle. Gardening can be expensive if you buy pre-grown plants at commercially grown stores like Home Depot, Lowes, etc. But if you start your garden from seed you can save hundreds of dollars. Nothing tastes better in my opinion than going outside and picking fresh produce right off the stem to cook in meals. Also, some grocery stores charge more than it would cost for a packet of seeds so you would be wasting money and not get as much produce as you would from your garden.

Another one of the many benefits of owning a garden is that it is a good hobby to have. Not only does gardening keep you busy but it also keeps you from staying inside all of the time, especially with warm weather. When you know that something is depending on you to live you feel the need to care for it. This makes me go outside every day even on the days I feel like being a little lazy. So no matter what day of the week it is I still go outside multiple times a day to check on my garden.

Gardening does not only provide some of the freshest produce you will ever eat but also provide sponges, that’s right sponges! There is a vegetable named Luffa! Luffa is a vegetable in its early stages of life. But when it drys out, you use loofah as a sponge for dirty dishes and exfoliating your skin. So as you can see gardening does not only provide vegetables but essentials around the house. Another example of something that you grow that doesn’t get eaten is a birdhouse gourd. Birdhouse gourds are carved and used to make birdhouses for birds to live in. These birdhouse gourds can be painted and look lovely hanging from a warm inviting home.

    Did you know that gardening can make money? I personally sell my organic produce I grow in my farmstand at the end of my driveway. I also sell my produce to nearby restaurants to make money. This way everything I purchased for my garden (soil, plants, and seeds) is all paid off and I make a little fortune as well. I do not charge myself expensively unless the item of the produce is exotic (not grown locally). But I grow a lot of exotic produce so I make enough money to sell other things at my farmstand like beef jerky, chapstick, etc.

I hoped you all enjoyed this article! Have a great day! 

A Film Review by Alexus Twyman

 The Sound of Music (1965) - Film Review:

The Sound of Music is a film that has stood the test of time and resonated with audiences for years due to its relatable themes, beautiful scenery, and breathtaking cinematography. The film begins with the jovial Maria singing out on the vast hillsides of Austria, distracted from her work as a nun at the abbey. Upon her return, Maria is admonished for her distractive nature by the other nuns and is sent to be a nanny to prove her worthiness as a nun. Maria is daunted by the task of being a governess to seven children of widowed former Captain von Trapp, whose strict rules she hesitates to enforce. The film follows Maria as she navigates the situation and brings her zeal for life and love of music into the household. 

Throughout the film, producer and director Robert Wise, often uses a variety of wide pan and shots to establish the rural setting of Salzburg, Austria. The Sound of Music was filmed on location, in Salzburg, Austria, which serves to make the film feel more realistic. 

The von Trapps are portrayed on screen as a fictionalized version of the real life family with slight differences in the story. In reality, Maria was more strict while the Captain and his first wife encouraged musical talents in their children, who were not the same gender and ages as those portrayed in the film. Despite its historical inaccuracies, The Sound of Music is a wonderful musical with generally good writing. 

 Julie Andrews’ Maria is the anchor of the film, holding it together while breathing life into the role. The singing, while difficult to capture on camera, is done expertly with each of the characters, including the Captain, becoming more established as the film progresses. The artistic use of the hills and landscape of Austria serves to provide a sense of freedom and contribute to the film’s themes of family and love.      

Overall, The Sound of Music is a nostalgic film, using bright colors and imagery to paint a portrait of Austria as a friendly and hospitable country. The film focuses on the relationship between governess Maria and the Von Trapp children, with the background of World War II. Throughout the film, characters reference the ongoing war, with multiple instances of foreshadowing Germany’s eventual invasion of Austria. The Sound of Music uses the location of Austria to establish the setting as well as to move the plot along, creating a real-time feel to the movie.   

The Sound of Music was filmed in 1965, with the use of the Mitchell BNC Camera and Modern Cinema Systems MC-70, to produce a variety of effects. The film was nominated for ten Academy Awards and won five, including best picture and best director. Since The Sound of Music was released in 1965, the film has gone on to receive critical acclaim and praise from audiences across the world. 

Sources used:

  • “The Sound of Music (1965).” ShotOnWhat?, 15 June 2019, https://shotonwhat.com/the-sound-of-music-1965#:~:text=The%20movie%20The%20Sound%20of,and%20editing%20by%20William%20Reynolds. 

  • Bauer, Patricia. "The Sound of Music". Encyclopedia Britannica, 4 Aug. 2017, https://www.britannica.com/topic/The-Sound-of-Music-film-by-Wise. Accessed 14 January 2022.

Bertram, Colin. “The Von Trapps: The Real Family That Inspired 'the Sound of Music'.” Biography.com, A&E Networks Television, 5 Feb. 2021, https://www.biography.com/news/real-von-trapp-family-sound-of-music