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Teen Tastemakers: Summer Picks


Reading + Entertainment

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Teens, Idea Exchange | July 3, 2018

Summer is upon us! We are ready to sleep in, feel the sunshine on our faces, and enjoy some well-deserved free time. If you’re looking for something great to fill your summer schedules, look no further: it may be summertime, but the Teen Tastemakers still have you covered. Enjoy our selections – we’ll be back in September with more recommendations and reviews.


Listen (Charlotte)

Reputation coverHarry Styles album coverMy Dear Melancholy album artFrom the Fires album coverMelodrama album cover

With summer comes one thing, music festivals and summer tours. Every year, it seems like there’s so many it’s hard to keep track. Here’s a list of some festivals and tours that might be fun to check out.

Lollapalooza: Lollapalooza is no longer a touring festival like it was in the 90s, but it’s still got a great lineup. From August 2nd to 5th in Chicago, you can see everyone from The Weeknd and Post Malone to Greta Van Fleet and Franz Ferdinand.

Harry Styles: A previous member of One Direction, everyone knows who Harry Styles is. However, they might not know that he reinvented himself as a 70s soft rock/pop singer, and he’s on tour this year.

Festival d’ete de Quebec: A more local festival, this Quebec festival will be July 5th to 15th, and has a great mix of pop and rock acts. Some of what the lineup has to offer is Camila Cabello, Cyndi Lauper, Beck, Foo Fighters, and Lorde. And no, it won’t be entirely in French.

Taylor Swift: Everyone knows she’s on tour for her most recent album Reputation. And even if you don’t know her music super well, you know she’ll put on a good show. She’ll been in Toronto August 4th and 5th.


Watch (Gemma)

Today, I’m going to be reviewing Solo: A Star Wars Story. If you haven’t seen it yet, spoilers ahead!

Solo: A Star Wars Story is a prequel film about the titular Han Solo’s adventures before A New Hope. It follows him from his childhood as a criminal on the ship-building planet of Corellia, to his escape and his plans to reunite with his love, Qi’ra. I didn’t go into this movie with very high expectations, but I thoroughly enjoyed myself. Han and Qi’ra’s relationship was dynamic and interesting, even though I knew she would have to betray him in the end, since Lucasfilm wouldn’t let him have a love interest other than Leia. Donald Glover gave a fantastic performance as Lando Calrissian, and so did Phoebe Waller-Bridge as his rebellious navigator droid L-3. My favourite part was the storyline with Crimson Dawn, and I especially enjoyed the nod to Darth Maul at the end, as well as the developing rebellion run by Enfys Nest.

Solo gave us a grittier side to Star Wars that we haven’t seen as much before, and I would love to see more of the characters introduced in it. I didn’t care much for Han Solo during the original films, but this movie changed my mind. In short, I thought Solo: A Star Wars Story was a good, fun movie.


Read (Ethan)

To Kill a Mockingbird book cover   Lord of the Flies book coverCharlotte's Web book coverHeart of Darkness book cover

July has fantastic weather and great books to read. Sit outside and hear the birds chirp as you gaze into a new world. A book I recommended is To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. This unforgettable and deeply moving novel examines the roots of human behaviour: innocence, kindness, humor, love and hatred. This classic tale is still a bestseller. Some other books I recommended for this season are Lord of the Flies by William Golding, Charlotte’s Web by E.B White and the Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad.


Learn (Madeleine)

Complete Handbook of Novel Writing book coverPractical Course in Drawing and Painting book coverTo the Letter book coverJoy of Cooking book coverKeyboard Course book coverAmerican Sign Language book cover

Summer is a great chance to start a new hobby. I know that I want to try geocaching! Here’s a list of hobbies I’ve tried that I can definitely recommend!

Writing: Writing is one of my favourite hobbies. It’s great because there are so many options! You can write fiction, non-fiction, poetry, song lyrics, or journal! My favourite thing to write is fiction, because it’s so much fun to make a story up in my head and see it become something. You can write on a computer or on paper, but I personally find it easier to be creative when writing on paper.

Art: Art is another great way to express yourself. It’s also full of options: drawing, painting, embroidery, and more! I could go on for ages! Personally, I enjoy drawing, embroidery, and needle felting! Art is a great way to relax. I even like to do art even when I’m watching TV or listening to music!

Rock collecting: Rock collecting can be fun; it might not sound like it, and it’s not for everyone, but I can definitely say I enjoy it! When I was little, my mom couldn’t take me for a walk without me coming home with one or two new rocks for my collection. I still have a huge collection spread throughout my room! Rocks can be so unique and beautiful, and so fun for decorating.

Letter writing: Nowadays we always talk to our friends through internet, text, and email. It’s totally normal now for us to pick up our phone or laptop and send a quick “hi” to our friends. This is awesome, especially if you have a friend you don’t get to see often, but there’s also something great about receiving a hand written letter. I love getting a letter from a friend in the mail, then sitting down to write back about all the latest events in my life!

Cooking & baking: Think about your favourite food. Or that recipe you’ve been asking your mom to make for ages. You can make it yourself, and it’s probably not as hard as you think either! Grab an old recipe book, or go online and search for a recipe you would like to try. Plan it out, and then buy any ingredients you need but don’t have. Then, when you have some free time, get to work! It’s even more fun if you bake or cook with a friend or family member, and make sure you put on some fun music! When you’re done, you get to sit down with some fresh, homemade food!

Music: Do you play an instrument? If not, why not start? I play the keyboard, and love it. There’s something unexplainably wonderful about pressing a bunch of keys and hearing a song. One word of advice though: don’t play music just before bed. Even classical music can get stuck in your head until you’re almost sick of Beethoven… almost.

Languages: Learning a new language can be so much fun! I’m currently learning French and American Sign Language (ASL). There are a lot of great apps and websites for learning new languages, and you can also find books at the library! Try asking a friend or family member to learn with you!


Eat (Lauren)

These are some of my favourite restaurants to go to. I look for speedy service, cleanliness, and kind and helpful restaurant staff. Keep reading for the restaurants worth checking out this summer.

Boston Pizza: You should consider going to Boston Pizza during the summer because they have a great menu and selection. Even if you don’t enjoy pizza they have other items, such as pasta. Boston Pizza is also very family friendly.

Moose Winooski’s: Moose Winooski’s is a good restaurant to consider because it is also very family friendly, but it can be very loud. It has an extensive menu to pick from.

East Side Mario’s: East Side Mario’s is another good restaurant to visit because it delivers if you don’t want to go out. It’s also is easy to get to in Cambridge because it’s in the mall. It also has a good selection of meals.

Symposium Café: Symposium Café is also a great spot to grab something to eat. It doesn’t deliver like some of the other ones but it is a nice spot to eat. Symposium Café is typically not as busy and big inside as some of the other restaurants.


Do you have exceptional taste? Do you love books, movies, and music? Would you like to be involved with the library, gain valuable resume experience, AND earn volunteer hours?

The Teen Tastemakers are accepting new members for our 2018/2019 session. Join us at our next meeting on Monday, September 17th from 6:30-8:00pm at Idea Exchange Preston (435 King St E, Cambridge ON). Contact Idea Exchange Preston at 519-653-3632 for more information.