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The student news source of Iowa City West High

West Side Story

The student news source of Iowa City West High

West Side Story

The student news source of Iowa City West High

West Side Story

Staff Profile
Hoazin Bukhary
FOJ Intern

(she/her) Hoazin is a sophomore West High. This is her first year on staff and is an intern. She likes to draw.

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January news briefs

With winter underway, take a look at the events that marked the first half of the second trimester.

Christmas Carol

The Arganbright Auditorium transformed into a cold winter day when Theatre West showcased “A Christmas Carol” Nov. 30 to Dec. 2. Andreas Warren ’24 starred as Ebenezer Scrooge, while Caroline Seery ’24 took on the role of the Ghost of Christmas Past and Briar Martin ’24 played the Ghost of Christmas Present. 

Seniors Andreas Warren and Xion Ownes-Holts perfom in “A Christmas Carol.”

Stuffed Animal Drive

1440 Interact held a stuffed animal drive for Open Heartland, a local nonprofit that supports Latinx immigrant families, Dec. 4-8. They collected over 100 gently used or new stuffed animals, which Open Heartland handed out to families at their holiday event Dec. 10. 



For the second year in a row, West’s basketball teams competed in a doubleheader at Coralville’s Xtreme Arena Dec. 10; this year against Liberty. The girls team won 50-42. Freshman Sasha Baldwin led the team with 18 points and sophomore Grace Fincham with 9 assists. The boys team continued their undefeated season, winning against the Bolts 74-53. 

Jacob Koch ’25 scans past a defender at the Liberty double header Dec. 10.

Candy Grams Fundraiser

West Student Government (WSG) organized a candy gram fundraiser for students to purchase candy canes for fellow peers and staff Dec. 11-15. After a week of sales, they handed out the candy grams Dec. 20. WSG raised $160 for Community Inclusion Club’s Winter Gift Drive. 


Show Choir

Good Time Company (GTC) performed in the annual Winter Swing Show Dec. 17 in West’s Arganbright Auditorium. This year, their act was titled “Time for Me to Fly,” featuring songs like “The Innocence” by Craig Hella and “Time for Me to Fly” by Jonas Brothers. The performance included solos by Andreas Warren ’24, Rana Saba ’25 and Lovella Varner ’27. The show also included special acts by the West Jazz Band, Vox Novus and more. 

Rana Saba ’25 performs a solo at the Winter Swing Show Dec. 17.

Spirit Week

West Student Government organized a winter spirit week Dec. 18-22. The themed days included pajama day, flannel day, white-out, rhyme without reason and ugly sweater day. 


Cadenza Vue Concert

West musicians gathered at the Vue Rooftop Dec. 19 to raise money for Cadenza’s annual Vue fundraiser. Cadenza, West’s music charity club, performed from 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m, playing holiday music under ambient lighting for Vue customers. Cadenza earned 15% of Vue proceeds from the evening and donated their earnings to the Iowa City Music Auxiliary. 

Maddux Neukrich ’27 performs at the Vue Dec. 19.

Iowa High School Speech Association State

West students traveled to Ankeny to compete in the IHSSA state tournament Jan. 5-6 . For the fourth year in a row, John Cooper led west to another state title with seniors Jane Lam ’24 and Kamakshee Kuchhal ’24 placing as runner-ups for Policy. Aahana Gupta ‘27 and Evelyn Asay ‘25 made it to semifinals for Public Forum while Diana Tivanskaya ’25 and Waad Dafalla ’26 made it to quarter finals. For Lincoln Doughlas, Spencer Thomas ’24 reached semifinals and Gwen Smith ’26 made it to quarterfinals. Prior to the state tournament, Benjamin Kleiman ‘24 and Bashir Eltyeb ‘25 received bids for the Tournament of Champions throughout the season.

West students competed IHSSA state tournament Jan. 5-6 .

Walk Out

After a shooting at Perry High School Jan. 4 which injured seven individuals and killed 11-year-old Ahmir Jolliff, West students participated in a March for Our Lives protest. Students marched to the Old Capitol building after fourth period to protest Iowa lawmakers’ inaction on gun violence.



This year’s SPIT productions consisted of two comedies “Rideshare Overshare” and “10 Ways to Survive the Zombie Apocalypse,” performed Jan. 11 and Jan. 18.  Seniors Andreas Warren, Maddie Struthers, Briar Martin and De’Jah Jordan directed the shows. 31 students acted in the show, and after eight weeks of rehearsal, the performances took place in the Little Theatre.

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About the Contributors
Zaira Ahmad
Zaira Ahmad, Print Editor-in-Chief
(she/her) Zaira Ahmad is a Senior at West High. This is her third year on staff, and she is the Print Editor-In-Chief. Outside of the newsroom, you can probably find Zaira at show choir rehearsal or volunteering with Rotary. She also loves spending time with her friends and family, reading, and watching movies.
Marie Stier
Marie Stier, Print Features Editor
(she/her) Marie Stier is a Junior at West High and she is excited for her second year on staff. She is the Feature Editor for WSS. In her free time, you can find her hammocking, doing puzzles on her porch and drinking kombucha (a recent discovery!)
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