The Smoke Signal

The truth behind Native American myths in pop culture

The truth behind Native American myths in pop culture
Treshan Nilaweera, Staff Writer November 24, 2020
Prior to the Board of Education’s decision to retire Pascack Valley’s Indian mascot and nickname in June, several community members argued that the mascot misrepresented Native Americans. This got us at the PV Student Publication thinking…Where else are Native Americans possibly being misrepresented? It turns out that there are many misconceptions in media and pop culture, as well as in the origins of Thanksgiving. In our ninth installment of our “What’s in a Name?” coverage package, Staff Writer Treshan Nilaweera debunks popular Native American misrepresentations.

‘Our goal is to give back to the community’

Sophomores Cameron Dolan and Layla Dhawan created an Instagram mask business, called Elizabeth Rose Masks, in August.
Abby Shapiro, Staff Editor November 24, 2020

Pascack Valley and Pascack Hills sophomores Cameron Dolan and Layla Dhawan felt it was “important” to advocate for different charitable organizations when starting their Instagram mask business, Elizabeth...

Seniors take on internship during the pandemic

Senior Toby Shapiro interns at Threads, in Westwood. One of her responsibilities is to organize clothes on the shelves.
Sarah Buttikofer, Staff Editor November 20, 2020

Despite challenges due to the coronavirus, Internship Program Coordinator Laura McSpirit has done her best to give the senior students an opportunity to find and pursue their passions in the internship...

“I didn’t necessarily [take] the same path as a lot of other teachers”

After 13 years working at Pascack Valley,  English and Journalism teacher Bill Rawson was named the 2020-2021 PV Teacher of the Year.
Ilmie Xhaferi and Sarah Buttikofer November 19, 2020

When Pascack Valley English and Journalism teacher Bill Rawson first started working for the district during the 2008-09 school year, he didn’t think his position would last for long. Thirteen years...

Senior receives Dwight D. Eisenhower Award

Sean Cuffe, left, was recently awarded the Dwight D. Eisenhower Award along with a Letter of Assurance from the United States Military Academy at West Point.
Ella Glastein, Staff Writer November 18, 2020

Senior Sean Cuffe was awarded the Dwight D. Eisenhower Award along with a Letter of Assurance from the United States Military Academy at West Point. The Dwight D. Eisenhower Award is given to one junior...

How the PV Indian came to be

Pascack Valley students in the 1966 yearbook,
Rachel Cohen, Former Editor in Chief November 16, 2020
While the Indian had been used for years as Pascack Valley's mascot, few know the history behind its creation. In our eighth installment of our "What's in a Name?" coverage package, last year's Editor in Chief Rachel Cohen explores how our mascot was chosen. PV alum Bob McSpirit was emailed this school year and the Q&A is displayed below.

The Indians of New Jersey

Arrow points on display at the Pascack Historical Society in Park Ridge. The Lenni Lenape inhabited New Jersey, Delaware, and eastern Pennsylvania.
Rachel Cohen November 12, 2020
While the PV Indian mascot has been used for years, many do not know the history of the Native American tribes that once lived on this land. In our eighth installment of our "What's in Name?" coverage package, last year's Editor in Chief Rachel Cohen delves into the history of our land. Before graduating in June, Cohen interviewed Pascack Historical Society trustee Francesca Moskowitz and emailed Assistant Professor of American Studies at Rutgers University Jameson R. Sweet.

Phasing out the logos

The Oklahoma State University Pistol Pete mascot at a football game. Pascack Hills used a version of Pistol Pete as their mascot until 2005.
Rachel Cohen, Former Editor in Chief November 9, 2020
A few years ago, the district began utilizing the PV block letters instead of the Indian head logo on official documents and athletic wear — a practice which had many community members confused. Pascack Hills went through a similar situation a few years prior with their Pistol Pete logo. In our sixth installment of our "What's in a Name?" coverage package, former Editor in Chief Rachel Cohen, explores the district's logo practice and PH's retirement of Pistol Pete.

PV sophomore cast in movie

Sophomore Evie Higgins stands for a picture with famous actor Pete Davidson. Both were cast in 2019 movie,
Sophie Kolax, Staff Writer November 3, 2020

A few days before PV sophomore Evie Higgins’ 2019 summer vacation, Higgins got a call that she wasn't expecting, offering her a new opportunity. “I got called by a casting agent for Universal; they...

The origins of the Valley Cup chant

Engineering teacher Jim Kennedy leads the Valley Cup chant last Sept. Kennedy has been leading the chant since 2018.
Treshan Nilaweera, Staff Writer November 2, 2020
At the end of every Pascack Valley pep rally, known as Valley Cup, a staff member leads the school in a traditional chant. Some have suggested that the chant might be disrespectful to Native American culture. In this installment of our “What’s in a Name?” package, staff writer Treshan Nilaweera explores the history and connotations behind the Valley Cup chant.

Halloween baking in quarantine

Halloween baking in quarantine
Hailey Migdal and Allison Varghese October 30, 2020

Enjoy these easy fall-themed treat ideas that can be made in a COVID-safe manner! The recipes are under each video. Recipe Recipe Recipe  

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