Consistency has been very hard to find during times like this, but one thing that we can expect is the 2020/21 Weedsport yearbook. On top of the challenges of the coronavirus, this year was the 100th-anniversary yearbook, so stakes were high. The Johnny Green interviewed yearbook coordinator Theresa Leonardi and Jenna Guzzo, a member of the yearbook staff, on their challenges faced during Covid-19.
Making this yearbook during Covid-19 presented lots of challenges on its own. When asked about the difficulties of making the book during such a demanding time, Leonardi responded, “In a normal year the yearbook takes a lot of time, however, this year in particular in addition to all of that, we had the challenges of pictures not being taken on time or at all due to Covid rules, so we had to deal with the struggle of getting photos. We also had old pictures that had to be either scanned in or photographed to be placed in the yearbook.”
“A lot goes into making a yearbook. We start off brainstorming what the layout will look like, then we compile all the pictures and people we need to recognize and work together to get it perfect,” said Guzzo. However, the quick shutdown last year and the instability of this year have made these tasks much more difficult. “This has definitely put us behind schedule. Getting pictures has been difficult since there aren’t as many school activities happening this year, so there are a lot of things that won’t be in it. The good thing is that a lot of the process is online so we don’t necessarily have to be in school,” Guzzo stated. The most difficult part of the yearbook, even before Covid, was the amount of time it takes. Collecting all the information needed to create the yearbook we see every year is very time-consuming and has only been made more difficult with Covid.
This being the 100th anniversary of the Weedsport yearbook, the challenges from Covid seemed to be intensified. “ The yearbook started in 1921, and if you look at this year’s book, you will see the original cover and some of the original words from the first yearbook. There are a few years where the book wasn’t produced during the Great Depression when they simply did not have enough money, and those years are listed in this year’s book” said Leonardi. “This year’s book is my personal favorite. There is a lot of history in it and a lot of information dating back to previous years.”
Nevertheless, with all of the struggles that coronavirus brings, the staff still found a way to bring us this year’s book. Although there is a lack of sports and other school events, the 100th-anniversary yearbook made this year’s book even more special.
When asked about her favorite part of being on the yearbook staff during this time, Guzzo answered, “It’s a big year because this is the 100th addition and a global pandemic, so it is very special to be a part of history right now.” We are living through the biggest historical event of our time, and our yearbook holds all of the memories that come with it. In Guzzo’s words, “It’s cool to be able to look back later in life, and show your kids. I’ve seen my parents’ yearbook and it’s nice to be able to see how they grew up and how things were different.”
Given the question of her favorite part of being part of the making of the yearbook, Leonardi replied, “I have two favorite parts. The first being watching the yearbook staff coming together and working out any problems that arise. This year’s staff was a great staff, there were only four kids, but they came together and solved their problems and figured out what needed to be done in order to produce the book. The second thing is the senior breakfast which is the day the book is unveiled to people for the first time. It’s always exciting to see what people’s reaction is since you’ve worked so hard on it for so long.”