The Branford Buzz has moved

If you are looking for The Branford Buzz, we have changed addresses.
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Tech Expo at WIS

Wednesday May 23, Walsh hosted a Tech Expo for everyone to share the importance of technology as a tool for teaching.  Technology changes everyday, and it is important for schools to keep up to date with all the newest technology and the Branford School District is doing it’s best to keep up!


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Indifference in the Student Body Threatens Salapalooza

The Mayan Calender is the new logo for the Salapalooza shirts for this year.

by Vincent Roca

Salapalooza has always been an event that students look forward to as the school year comes to a close. However, this year, lack of both funds and student motivation threatened to destroy not only one of the few school wide social events, but our school’s final goodbye to the graduating senior class. However, Student council did not give up. Due to their recent attempt to save Salapalooza, ends have been met and the picnic will go on. Student Council Co-President, Pompeo Mazzella noted that there had to be a tradeoff to keep the event going. Although Salapalooza will go on, the amount of food and purchased activities, such as the obstacle course, will be reduced to fit the budget.

When students began studying for midterms many members of Student Council feared that this year there would not be a Salapalooza. This fear was a very real one. With funds already low and no sign that more funds would be coming in, student council was close to deciding that this year’s Salapalooza would be canceled. Why was this year so difficult? Mazzella went on to explain that, “We have never had to fundraise like we ended up doing this year. In the past we used homecoming to get our money, but not that many people bought tickets so we only managed to raise $500. And even before homecoming we got money from the vending machines which brought in money weekly, without that money student council doesn’t have the funds to supply. We had to rely on the students to get involved with homecoming and the year round ‘dollar’ days, but there wasn’t enough money from those attempts” When all seemed lost, the council decided that this graduating class deserved a Salapalooza, and they would do as much as they could to keep the tradition alive.

In order to save Salapalooza, Student Council went on a “Save Salapalooza” campaign, complete with its own twitter hash tag (#SaveSalapalooza). During the last weeks, they organized multiple raffles as an attempt to raise the necessary funds. Mazzella noted that, “The fundraiser that worked really well this year was the first fundraiser that raffled off six items, we raised $500. The second fundraiser, the 50/50 raffle, didn’t prove to be that successful because we only got around $100 dollars total. Together, they added to enough money to let us start planning this year’s Salapalooza.” The fundraising continues. Tuesday May 29th, Ben and Jerry’s will be hosting Student Council and 30% of profits go towards Salapalooza. “If a lot of people show up, I can promise that everyone will have a more enjoyable Salapalooza,” Mazzella added.

The plan for Salapalooza this year will be different from the past years. Due to lack of participation in the multiple fundraisers, this year’s event had to be cut down. While Salapalooza usually consist of pizza, watermelon, Italian ice, and soda, this year, sadly, no pizza will be provided. Mazzella ensured that this year will be just as great as all of the Salapaloozas of the past. All of the great parts of Salapalooza will still be going on such as the faculty/student softball game, the 3 on 3 basketball tournament, ultimate Frisbee games and many more activities. The date of Salapalooza is the Friday before finals.

In the larger realm of things at Branford High School, Salapalooza is only one of the many student events that have suffered due to lack of school spirit and the ambition to donate and participate. Mazzella as a final note warned students of the dangers of this growing sense of apathy within the student body, he said, “This lack of motivation has damaged many major events this year including homecoming, Mr. BHS, and Salapalooza. The student body needs to get motivated. Student council tried and continues to try to stir a sense of school spirit with spirit week and other events throughout the year, but the students have to do their part too.” Student council exists to provide for the student body, so we, as students, must do our part in assisting their efforts to improve the BHS community for everyone in order to keep great, student run events such as Salapalooza alive.

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Youth in Government Elections

A mini voting station was created in student commons to allow classes to vote for their favorite candidates for Youth in Government.  The winning students got to spend a day shadowing town officers.

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Students warned of dangers of reckless driving

By Jackie Salg

Recently, Branford High School students heard about the dangers of reckless driving firsthand.

On Wednesday, April 23, North Branford resident Lynn Riordan talked to an auditorium full of juniors and seniors at Branford High School, where she shared her touching story about the death of her teenaged son, Matt. The event was organized in advance of the school’s prom, which will take place May 25 at the Aqua Turf in Southington.

On May 23, 2009 Lynn’s son, Matt Picciuto, died in a car crash on Totoket Road in North Branford. That day Matt, accompanied by his friends, decided to take this road, popular among young drivers for being a place to “catch some air.” The activity involves driving at excessive speeds up hills in an attempt to lift the car in the air. Matt had been driving at eighty miles an hour on this road in order “catch air,” his mom detailed. At one point all four of his tires had been lifted above the ground. When the car landed, it had missed the road only slightly, but enough to cause a rollover accident, she said.

Lynn Riordan speaks to BHS students in the Auditorium recently.

Students in the auditorium sat in silence as Lynn shared the story of Matt’s destructive driving decisions.

Before she left, she asked for anyone who had been affected by the account to please stand; there was not one person who did not stand.

Throughout the day, students discussed what was said at the assembly and it was evident that it was a story that they would carry their whole lives.

BHS Junior, Michelle Russo expressed how moving this story was to her stating, “The first time I heard about Matt was at driving school. It’s a very sad story even more so hearing it [for] the second time today. It just makes me rethink everything since I’m a driver. It makes me think about how safe I am out on the road.”

Lynn encourages all drivers to understand the importance of driving safe and slowing down by sharing this story at driving schools and local schools. She knew that one of the things Matt wanted to do in life was make a difference. She founded the Matt’s Mission Fund, a nonprofit organization that has assisted many people in need. Scholarships have been awarded in Matt’s name as well donations made to a few foundations. Lynn has also established an increasingly popular 5k road race Matt’s Mission, which will be held May 20 at North Branford High School. Head over to the website to register for the 5k road race.

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Kelly’s Korner: Advertising Claims Follow Up

by Kelly Du

With so many products out there being advertised in the world, it’s difficult to believe one claim over another. One way companies create an illusion of superiority is by using the words “better” and “best.” They may seem similar, but in terms of advertising claims, they’re quite different.  “Best” means “equal to.” Any product that is advertised as being the best just means that it’s “as good as the other superior products in its category.”

“Better” ends up being interpreted as a clear claim of superiority over other products in its category.  It can also be used to compare a product with something other than its competing brands, like claiming orange juice as “better than a vitamin pill” or “the better breakfast drink.” If a product is truly superior, then it will clearly say so along with supporting evidence. Most of the time though, this is not the case. If a product mentions its advantage over the competition, there’s a good chance that it’s not actually better, but just equal to it.

Next time you see an advertisement, be aware of when they use the words “better” and “best.” Those words are ways advertisers create an illusion of superiority.

“ADVERTISEMENTS.” The Official Home of Bing Crosby. BCE, Inc. Web. 29 Apr. 2012. <;.

Schrank, Jeffrey. “The Language of Advertising Claims.” HANDOUT: The Language Of Advertising Claims. Web. 22 Apr. 2012. <;.


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Day of Silence

Day of Silence was a project created by Cultural Diversity and GAS to raise awareness about bulling in schools.   Over 30 students and some teachers participated in Day of Silence this year for all different reasons.  Mrs. Baker said she took  “part in the Day of Silence to  bring attention to all those who feel silenced in our society with hopes that they will soon have a voice.”  Everyone wanted to help support the cause by becoming silent for one day.

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