Wednesday, May 25, 2022

2022 Topps Series One Hanger Pack

Cards are so hit or miss at Target that you never know what you'll find. Sometimes it's ten boxes of Heritage, sometimes it's a lonely hanger pack. At least it keeps me on my toes! Let's see how this attempt to feed the cardboard addiction went. Not as many cards as usual, but you never know.

Let's see how this one went!


Here's the box. Err...pack...err...I don't know.


I guess this would be the pack. Just the one. I know it's a thick one with a bunch of cards. But, still, it seems less satisfying to just open the one pack. I think I'm mentally telling myself there's only one chance to get something good, and my mind doesn't like that as much.


I nice card of JD here. Glad to see he's heating up along with the rest of the Red Sox offense.


I like this shot of Xander. Although, I want to know more about it. The fans in the stands don't seem too excited. So, did he just draw a walk? His face suggests he just did something positive. But, I'm guessing he's not running hard to first. Or did he just score a run?


Speaking of guys I'd like to see get hot. How much better would the Sox be if Barnes was pitching like an all-star again?


I keep hoping those uniforms will grow on me. Not yet.


Not sure there's more I can say about this Hernandez card. What a photo!

So, there we go. For a pack with not as many cards as usual, there was quite a Red Sox haul. That's always a nice turn of events.

Does your mind convince you you're getting less with these packs too?

Friday, May 20, 2022

Maria Cade Visits Section 36!

Photo Anthony Panzino
Section 36 had another visitor! 
Maria Cade is passionate about representation, a talented singer, and the current Miss Central Pennsylvania. I was so excited that she wanted to visit with us to discuss those topics, and a few more.

So, let's see what happens when Maria Cade visits Section 36!

How did you celebrate winning the Miss Central Pennsylvania crown?

After earning the job of Miss Central Pennsylvania, I celebrated with my family! My mom, grandmother, and cousin drove over three hours to watch the competition. I was so grateful that they could be there for that moment! We shared so many hugs and then spent the evening at dinner celebrating the day!


What part of the upcoming Miss Pennsylvania competition are you most nervous about?

I wouldn't say I'm nervous, but I have been putting a lot of time into preparing for this year's talent portion. I am a classical vocalist and studied vocal performance while attending the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. This year, I will be performing an Italian aria that has pushed my vocal abilities to the limit, both technically and emotionally. To me, feeling butterflies in your stomach before any event means that you care, so I like to view any "nerves" before a performance in a positive light. I can't wait to perform my talent for everyone this year and showcase what I've been working on!


What’s something Meghan Sinisi is doing as Miss Pennsylvania that you would like to emulate?

I feel very fortunate that I was able to spend last year's Miss Pennsylvania week right next to Meghan, as we were number 7 and number 8 in the lineup! Watching her shine as Miss Pennsylvania and serve the commonwealth with such grace has been a joy. I most admire her tenacity and dedication to service. If there was an event in the state, chances are Meghan was there. If chosen as her successor, I hope to continue this level of excellence she has demonstrated throughout her year.


How did you select your social impact initiative, “Be V.I.S.I.B.L.E”?

Growing up in a small community, I often struggled with the idea of belonging because I come from a different background than most in my town. My mom is Italian and my dad is Taiwanese. I often grappled with embracing all parts of my identity, in my personal and professional life. It wasn't until my senior year of college when I met a Journalism professor who was also Taiwanese, that I truly felt like I could succeed as a journalist. Now more than ever, it is vital that our youth feel represented no matter who they are or where they come from. I chose my SII after realizing the importance of seeing representation in all areas. How can a child imagine that they can do something without visually seeing someone like them do it first? I want every child to know that no matter who you are or where you come from, your success is only limited by the depths of your imagination. 


What do you enjoy about performing your talent on stage?

I am always up for a challenge, so when choosing a song for my talent, I knew I wanted something that would demonstrate technical complexity while also showcasing my vocal strengths. I most enjoy bringing a sense of drama to the stage. As someone who grew up performing in musicals, I love to embody characters who are unlike myself and create a shared experience with the audience. To me, there is no thrill quite like a live performance, and I love getting to have a hand in that during the talent portion.


You’re working as a reporter for WTAJ. What do you enjoy about that field?

I am currently a multimedia reporter at WTAJ, which means I

pitch stories, conduct interviews, write the scripts, film video footage, edit the b-roll and write the web stories! It's a lot of work but I love that every day is different. When I wake up, for the most part, I never know what exciting adventures I will be going on for the day. I also enjoy getting to be in the community and meet the people of Central Pennsylvania. I am often traveling between six different counties for stories on any given week, so it has been a joy to tell the stories of community members across Central Pennsylvania.


If you could be a Disney character for a week, who would you choose? Why?

I am a HUGE Disney fan, and even worked for the company as a Disney Professional Intern for ABC News. If I could be any character for a week I would be Ariel. She is my favorite Disney princess and is a singer like me! I would also love to explore the underwater city of Atlantica where she is from.


If you had an extra ticket to a Pittsburgh Pirates game, who would you take with you? Why?

I would bring my grandpa! Every summer for Father's Day, my family treats him to a Pirates game in June. He loves the atmosphere of baseball games and also spends a lot of time watching my younger brothers play. It's always a great day getting to spend time with him at a game.


Is there a feature or activity at a baseball game that you’d especially like to experience?

As a singer, I would love to sing the National Anthem at a Pirates Game one day! It's a challenging song, but it would be an honor to perform at PNC Park! Also, for a Pittsburgh-specific event, I would love to run with the pierogis in the Pierogi race!



---

Oh yeah, running with the Pierogis would be so much fun! 

As always, I want to thank Maria for visiting with us, and for sending along the pictures to go with the interview.

I also want to wish her luck when she competes for Miss Pennsylvania! It would be fantastic to have another Section 36 Forever wear that crown.

I'm sure you'd like to follow along with Maria during her journey as Miss Central Pennsylvania. You should be sure to check out her title's Instagram account as well as her personal social media (Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter). They're great ways to keep track of everything she has going on. 


Thanks again Maria, and good luck!

Friday, May 13, 2022

Karson Fair Visits Section 36!

Photo ING Studios
Section 36 had another visitor! 
Karson Fair is passionate about self-worth, a talented dancer, and the current Miss Portland-Metro. I was so excited that she wanted to visit with us to discuss those topics, and a few more.

So, let's see what happens when Karson Fair visits Section 36!

How did you celebrate winning the Miss Portland-Metro crown?

I celebrated the best way I know how…with a girls’ night! After the competition, some of my best friends (all of which had never attended a Miss America Organization preliminary) came over to my place. My sweet mom was also in town from North Carolina, so getting to celebrate with so many people I love was a true treat! Then, the next day my mom and I headed up to Mt. Hood Ski Resort and took to the slopes to let out the excitement and adrenaline. Snowboarding has become a huge outlet for me, and it was the best way to round out the eventful weekend. 


What part of the upcoming Miss Oregon competition are you most nervous about?

Oh man. That’s a good one! Truthfully, I’m trying to stay away from the nervous energy. Instead, I’m choosing to truly embrace this experience as a gift that I didn’t think I would have (due to the previous age restrictions). In a sense, I have nothing to lose and everything to gain. BUT if we’re being honest, I can be my own worst enemy at times and my mind can play some serious tricks on itself. I’m hoping that I don’t put any unnecessary pressure on my performance so I can just bring my most authentic self to the Miss Oregon competition in June.  


After taking a break from competing with the Miss America Organization, what made you decide to give the Miss Portland-Metro crown a try?

Photo StephanieCarine
Although I’m usually a HUGE planner, I would be lying if I told you that my decision to compete in the Miss Portland-Metro competition was one that I had been mulling over for quite some time. In fact, it all came together in a matter of a few weeks and felt like an absolute whirlwind. At the end of the day, all the stars just perfectly aligned. The age limit had changed; I was (and still am) in desperate need of scholarship money as I’m pursuing a graduate degree; I met with Allison Cook (former Miss Oregon America and Miss Oregon USA) to learn more about the Miss Oregon Program and learned that the only regional competition I was eligible for was just a few weeks away, so the clock started ticking. There was a part of me that was terrified to compete again because although MAO has undoubtedly shaped my life—from being North Carolina’s Outstanding Teen in 2014, to helping pay for out-of-state tuition while attending Auburn University, and all the life skills in between—there was a time I didn’t know who Karson was outside of the program. I spent years figuring out just who I am outside of a “title”, and I was scared to fall back into old patterns while competing. However, the fear of having “what ifs” outweighed it all, and I also knew that my deep appreciation for the program + the life experience and insight I’ve gained while taking a step back would make this experience unique and worthwhile. The program has changed since I first competed as a teen in 2014, and so have I. 


How did you select your social impact initiative, “Know Your Worth”?

I naturally, yet strategically, selected my social impact initiative based on a few goals that I had: 1) I wanted my social impact to be an extension of something that I was already passionate about spreading and promoting in my daily life. 2) I wanted to be sure the message I was sharing would be relevant to anyone I meet regardless of age, socioeconomic background, race/ethnicity, or stage of life. 3) I wanted to meet a need that I noticed in my local community and the world around me. Starting critical conversations about unconditional self-worth and recognizing our own inherent value has always been important to me and is something I’ve noticed that we all need to be reminded of. I love being a human connector, and this message gives me the opportunity to have meaningful and intentional conversations with people in my community, profession, and daily life.  


What do you enjoy about performing your talent on stage?

Photo Lenn Long
Everything! But for me, it all starts with the song choice. I intentionally select a piece that will allow me to HAVE FUN and let go on stage! When it comes to the competition, all the practice and prep is complete, and it is my goal for the audience to have just as much fun watching my performance as I am having actually doing it.  


How would you complete the sentence, “I get great satisfaction when ___”?

…I find a great new Gluten-Free restaurant in town. HA! Kidding. Well, not really…I love food! But beyond a physical sense, I get great satisfaction when I meaningful interactions with other people. 


If you could be a Disney character for a week, who would you choose? Why?

Oof. Admittedly, I am not a huge Disney gal. However, I have always been obsessed with Belle. As a kid, it was her beautiful yellow ball gown and kindness that I loved. I mean, I did BEG my mom for a “Belle Dress” when visiting Disney as a child (sadly, we couldn’t afford one so that dream never came to fruition). But now, I think it’s her open mindedness, free spirit. appetite for adventure, compassion, and, you can’t forget, her stubbornness that draw me to her. 


If you had an extra ticket to a Hillsboro Hops baseball game, who would you take with you? Why?

I’d probably bring my friend Abby. Not only is she always down for a fun, spur of the moment adventure, but she always brings a cheery attitude to anything she does. We would have the best time! Plus, it’s one of the few local sporting events that neither of us have attended (yet) so we could both cross that off our list. 


Is there a feature or activity at a baseball game that you’d especially like to experience?

I have always wanted to throw the first pitch at a baseball game, and I just might be getting that opportunity in a few months with the Portland Pickles! I am SO stoked! Fun fact: I played softball for roughly 4-5 years, but it has been a hot minute since I’ve stepped foot on a mound so I should probably start practicing soon! 


---

I'm sure she'll be amazing! 

As usual, I want to thank Karson for visiting with us, and for sending along the pictures to go with the interview.

I also want to wish her luck when she competes for Miss Oregon! It would be fantastic to have the first Section 36 Forever wear that crown.

I'm sure you'd like to follow along with Karson during her journey as Miss Portland-Metro. You should be sure to check out her title's Instagram account. It's a great way to keep track of everything she has going on. 


Thanks again Karson, and good luck!

Thursday, May 12, 2022

2022 Topps Series One Blaster!

Found another one of these. Cards are so hit or miss at Target. One day the shelves are empty. Next day 15 boxes of this are sitting there. Next day all gone. But, online it always stocked. So strange.

Let's see how this one went!


Here's the box. This time Topps tricked us by using two photos of the same player. I'm guess there's more than just Ohtani in this box.


But, he's the only one on the packs too.


Not a Red Sox card, but not a bad pull. If it can't be a Red Sox, it would have been nice to be a more hobby popular player. But, I'm certainly not complaining.


Old friend Jose Iglesias. Nice little action shot here. I can really sense the motion.


Based on his reaction, I'm guessing Matt Barnes did something positive in this photo. I can't be sure since he's been struggling a lot lately. Been a while since I've seen a similar reaction.


Speaking of struggling, here's a future star. I suppose that could still be true if Dalbec can turn things around.

And there we have it. A little short on the Red Sox side. But, any time you find the case hit at Target you have to consider it a good box.

How did yours go?

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Ava Katherine Socarras Visits Section 36!

Section 36 had another visitor! 
Ava Katherine Socarras is passionate about kidney disease awareness, a talented musician, and the current Miss Lexington's Outstanding Teen. I was so excited that she wanted to visit with us to discuss those topics, and a few more.

So, let's see what happens when Ava Katherine Socarras visits Section 36!

How did you celebrate winning the Miss Lexington’s Outstanding Teen crown?

My family and I celebrated with going to dinner a night that week, but the main celebration from my family was getting a guitar. When I decided I wanted to compete in the competition, I had wanted a guitar really bad. I already had a ukulele but to play most of the songs I had wanted to play, I needed an acoustic guitar. I asked my parents if we could celebrate me competing, and possibly wining, by getting a guitar. Little did I know I would be getting one for Christmas a few moths after the competition. Being with my family is very important to me. We are very close and I would not have it any other way.


How did you select your social impact initiative: Share a Spare - Kidney Disease Awareness?

As a child, I was surrounded by the word "kidney". My younger brother Jacob was born with an underdeveloped kidney, and my great grandfather was on dialysis for almost 10 years. The issues involving kidneys in my family are what made me select Share A Spare- bringing attention to Kidney Disease Awareness. When choosing the name for my Social Impact Initiative, I ran into many thoughts. I ended with Share A Spare because of the motto I made, "Share information on kidney disease and possibly spare a kidney to one in need." I have always felt a strong connection to kidney disease awareness, since I was a young girl. So, it just made sense to start a my Social Impact on something I was already so passionate about.


Is there a specific goal you’d like to accomplish during your time as Miss Lexington’s Outstanding Teen?

The goal I have as Miss Lexington's Outstanding Teen is to be remembered in the Lexington community. As the very first Miss Lexington's Outstanding Teen, it's so important for me to make an impact on this amazing town. I want to share the importance of my Social Impact Initiative with them, but also encourage them to start spreading awareness on things THEY find important. I hope that Lexington will be able to remember my name and that I can be a role model for those there.


How would you complete the sentence, “I get great satisfaction when ___”?

"I get great satisfaction when being around, music." The first thought entering my brain when completing that sentence is music. I have been singing since I was almost 4 years old, which is 10 years of me singing. I play the Ukulele, Guitar, and I hope to play the piano. Whenever my day is going "not so great" I know I can put in my earbuds and listen to my favorite songs and I will be satisfied. Music definitely keeps me happy and almost always makes me want to burst out into a dance. 


If you could be a Disney character for a week, who would you choose? Why?

If I could be any Disney character I would be Ariel from The Little  Mermaid. As a kid I loved mermaids so much, and I still think they are pretty cool. Not only that, but the first song I performed on a stage was "Part of Your World" from the Little Mermaid, so it has some importance to me. I have also always really loved the ocean. My favorite animal is a dolphin, and a mermaid cannot get much closer to that. 


If you had an extra ticket to a Greensboro Grasshoppers baseball game, who would you take with you? Why?

If I had extra tickets to a Greensboro Grasshoppers game I would take my younger brother Jacob. He is only 11 and wants to play baseball. He played for a bit but during Covid he had to stop. Now he is very passionate about it and wants to start playing again. I think bringing him to the game can boost his inspiration even more. Not only that but I know I could have good laugh if he were there. 

 

Is there a feature or activity at a baseball game that you’d especially like to experience?

Actually, I just went to Washington D.C. with my 8th grade class, and had the opportunity to watch my first Major League Baseball game. It was a lot of fun. I think an experience that would be really cool would be getting a ball from one of the players. The part where it comes flying at my face may be a little scary, but I think it's worth getting the ball from someone on the field. Also, I could at it to my collection of random things on my shelf and showing the ball off to my friends would be awesome! 


---

I'd like to get a ball myself!

As usual, I want to thank Ava for visiting with us, and for sending along the picture to go with the interview.

I also want to wish Ava luck when she competes for Miss North Carolina's Outstanding Teen! It would be fantastic to have another Section 36 Forever wear that crown.

I'm sure you'd like to follow along with Ava during her journey as Miss Lexington's Outstanding Teen. You should be sure to check out her title's Instagram account. It's a great way to keep track of everything she has going on.


Thanks again Ava, and good luck!

What people are reading this week