Author: Sierra Wilson

Halloween a history

Try to picture Halloween one or two thousand years ago—Snickers bars and Skittles would, unfortunately, not make an appearance. However, much of Halloween might not be as unfamiliar as you may think. Costumes, fires, seeking tokens door to door, and even a fear of ghosts would all be present. Though times and traditions have changed, the original sparks of Halloween in many ways still linger today The history of Halloween dates back to the Celts who lived in modern day Ireland, the United Kingdom, and parts of France. For the Celts, the New Year began on November 1st, and so what we now know as Halloween would have been the ancient New Year’s Eve. November 1st, to the Celts, was a time to celebrate the close of the summer harvest and prepare for the cold months ahead. On the night before this important day, the Celts believed the barrier between the lands of the living and dead opened. On this night, our modern Halloween, they celebrated Samhein (pronounced sow-in), believing this night was especially fruitful for predicting the future. To this purpose, Celtic druids would build huge bonfires for the burning of sacrifices. The Celts wore costumes as they attended these fires—perhaps showing the origins of Halloween costumes. On Samhein, the Celts believed fairies and other beings could also enter the world, some of which were harmful. Celts dressed...

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The Bookshelf with Trevor Young

“Watchmen” by Allen Moore and illustrated by Dave Gibbon, winner of the Hugo Award   Summary: What if superheroes really existed? No. What if they really existed? This is the question acclaimed author Allen Moore, author of “V for Vendetta,” takes on in his graphic novel “Watchmen,” which chronicles the downfall and experiences of a group of superheroes, set in the Cold War era.   Many may doubt the legitimacy of the graphic novel medium. However, in 2005, “Watchmen” was listed by “Time” magazine as one of the top 100 English-language novels from 1923 to the present.   “It’s...

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Stitching our Valley together

A little piece of dad’s blue jeans here, a piece of grandma’s apron there and a scrap of mother’s Sunday dress on the side, all quilted together in a patchwork of memories.   Quilters can produce enduring family heirlooms and precious gifts. More recently, quilters are also producing elaborate works of art, never meant to touch a mattress. Members of the Utah Valley Quilt Guild are producing both types of quilts and more, spreading art, serving our community and building a network of friendship.   The Utah Valley Quilt Guild, which meets on the third Wednesday of each month...

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Building bridges: Visiting Latin markets in our community

I should have known better than to pull out my notebook too soon. Big journalism faux pas. Still, I ended up leaving with free coconut candy from Guatemala—striped like a flag, it’s the manager’s favorite. I think speaking a little broken Spanish and showing my curiosity paved some common ground.   For this article I explored the Latin markets that dot our valley, reminding some of distant homelands and some of the American melting pot. I wanted to dip my toes into this pot, this culture within our culture, to find out its secrets and its treasures.   Here are some of the things I found: brightly colored piggy banks, freshly butchered pigs’ feet, chicken feet and cow tongues, sweet potato jam, large bags of dried mate (used to make a traditional South American drink), guava and banana pastes, plenty of piñatas, a Spanish library, plantain chips, pineapple empanadas and a few new faces for me to meet, even if I couldn’t communicate freely with them.   Another thing I found more of was myself. Since elementary school I’ve been enamored with Latin cultures. I spent a whole year listening to Spanish pop and remember singing “A Puro Dolor” at a talent show when I was eleven or twelve. I’ve also been known to salsa dance and enjoy all types of Latin foods. But sometimes I still feel like...

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Where business meets art

Behind him, taped to a gray filing cabinet, are a few photos and some grandchild-made drawings. One features a tracing of a little blue hand accompanied by the words “for Grandpa Tim.”   “Grandpa Tim,” or Tim Bird, is the owner of Artist Corner, a local art supply store in Orem that sells art supplies and mattes and frames artwork, prints and scans. It also offers art classes and even serves as a gallery to display and sell art.   Bird seems at home in the art store, wearing jeans and a sage green pullover and conversing easily with...

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