Like most activities, Menagerie has had to adapt to the confusion and uncertainty of COVID-19. However, even with the stress of designing a magazine from home, the 2020 staff persevered and was recently notified that the issue, “Spice Rack,” was included in a list of 20 finalists for the Columbia Scholastic Press Crown award. 2020 Editor in Chief, Juliette Lopez ‘21, unexpectedly found out about the award through a post on social media.
“It was super exciting because all of the magazine was made at home, and we didn’t even know if [it] was happening,” Lopez said. “So the fact that the magazine we thought wouldn’t happen ended up being really successful was pretty exciting for all of us.”
The 20 finalists will find out in March which publications will be awarded the Gold and Silver Crowns for the international award, advisor Joseph Maffey said. This is the first year Menagerie has been selected for this specific citation; however, every year they win a variety of awards, including two first place prizes from the American Scholastic Press Association this year.
“The most impressive thing for me is that the students designed the entire magazine at home, where normally we would design it at school and have a bunch of feedback,” Maffey said. “But they did all the work themselves from their homes.”
There were small aspects of the magazine that distinguished it from other years and led to its first-time nomination for the award, Lopez said.
“Our big thing was that we wanted every page to be full of color and fun,” Lopez said. “Last year we incorporated a lot of the artists in it and did these things called blurbs where the artist talked about their work and what it meant. We added a bunch of new stuff, so I think that really set us apart from past years.”
With staff meetings starting up and the beginning of the production of the 2021 issue just around the corner, the editors are figuring out how to build on the success of last year, current Editor in Chief Paige Haworth ‘21 said.
“I think we have a really great idea for the magazine this year, and I’m really excited to get to start working with the staff and execute the ideas,” Haworth said. “I think what we have is super unique and goes very well with this time that we’re in.”
Writing submissions for this year’s Menagerie issue are closed; however, students can submit their artwork until Feb. 20.