800-Pound Paper Airplane Flew at 98 Miles-Per-Hour

By Paige Wills in Why Choose Paper?

Paper airplane

Paper airplane (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When we think of paper planes, we usually think of the small ones that are made out of one sheet of paper. They probably only weigh a few ounces. However, an 800- pound paper airplane was recently built and launched.

According to an article on the Huffington Post’s website titled, “Giant Paper Airplane: Pima Air & Space Museum Lifts Off 800-Pound Paper Airplane,” the 45 foot, 800 pound paper airplane flew at an altitude of 2,703 feet and reached speeds of 98 miles-per-hour.

According to the article, the design was inspired by a 12-year-old who won an airplane distance contest.

I bet this was a pretty cool site to witness in person, especially for the 12-year-old who helped inspire it.

Here is a short YouTube video of the launch of the 800-pound paper airplane!

Share your thoughts on this event.

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Paper Report Cards Optional?

By Paige Wills in Why Choose Paper?

Students holding report cards.

Students holding report cards. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Every quarter, students receive a report card that has their much anticipated class grades on it. Some are handwritten while others are typed. Nevertheless, these paper report cards give students a sense of accomplishment, especially if they do well.  Parents often keep their child’s report card. They either place it on the refrigerator, in a scrapbook, or in a drawer. Later on in life, finding this report card can be a nice, unexpected surprise that takes you back to your school days.

However, according to an article on thestate.com titled “Paper copies of 2012 report cards may be optional,” public school districts in South Carolina may have the option of e-mailing parents a link to view their child’s report card or putting the link in the school newsletter instead of sending out paper versions of report cards.

To me, an electronic version of a report card doesn’t have the same feel. Now, electronic versions may be more acceptable for high school or college students. However, I believe elementary and middle school students should still receive paper copies. Younger children like to take things home to their family and show them their accomplishments, whether it is a drawing, test grade, or a report card. It’s something to be proud of (even if there is a “not-so-good” grade).

However, according to the article, parents would still be able to request a paper copy of their child’s report card, free of charge.

Do you think electronic versions of report cards will become more popular than paper versions? Do you believe younger children should receive paper versions of report cards? If you are a parent, do you view report cards as something to be cherished?

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Paper Luminaries and Relay for Life

By Paige Wills in Why Choose Paper?

English: OAK HARBOR, Wash. (June 6, 2008) Lumi...

Image via Wikipedia

March is usually associated with basketball. However, according to an article on Yahoo News!, March is also National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month.

I recently heard a speech about Relay for Life. I thought since it was National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, I’d write about the importance paper plays during Relay for Life ceremonies.

According to Relay For Life’s website, white paper bags are decorated to honor loved ones and friends affected by cancer.

Friends and family members honor loved ones affected by cancer by personalizing each luminary with memories, drawings, or pictures.

These paper bags are then turned into luminaries. Sand and candles are placed inside of each bag. The luminaries light the way and are a beautiful tribute to those lost and affected by cancer. Loved ones then take a silent walk around the track looking at the luminaries.

Even though it is a beautiful tribute, Relay For Life’s website states “All resolve to keep fighting to save more lives so no more luminaria bear the names of those lost to the disease.” Hopefully, one day these will be plain,, white paper bags or survivor-only luminaries as there will someday be a cure for cancer.

I have participated in a luminary ceremony for my grandma at the graveyard. I imagine it was a beautiful sight at night seeing all the luminaries honoring loved ones.

It’s truly amazing how beautiful a plain, white paper bag can become and what it can stand for.

To find out how to get involved or how to dedicate a luminary at a Relay For Life event in your neighborhood, check out Relay For Life’s website.

Have you ever participated in Relay For Life or created a luminary?

Check out this short YouTube video showcasing Relay For Life’s luminaries.

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Creative Way to Repurpose Unused Paper and Make Beautiful, Fun Envelopes

By Paige Wills in How Paper Is Environmentally Friendly, Why Choose Paper?

Traditional design of the envelope for condole...

Image via Wikipedia

After people finish reading magazines, there isn’t much to do with them. You can either keep them long past their expiration date or recycle them. However, Country Living magazine published an article titled “How to Make an Envelope From Recycled Paper” by Catherine Strawn. The article came up with a creative way to repurpose pages from old magazines. You can make beautiful envelopes out of magazine pages.

I have summarized the three easy steps from the article.

  1. Use their template. Draw it onto the piece of paper and then cut it out.
  2. Fold the side flaps, then the bottom flap and secure with glue.
  3. Insert the letter and seal the envelope.

These envelopes would be great for party invitations. It would also be a fun way to spice up a letter. Even though it might take a little more effort, you don’t have to buy anything except a glue stick (You could probably use tape as well).

This would be a fun craft for families to do together. So if you have a party planned for the near future or are looking for something creative to do, repurpose old magazine pages and make envelopes! (Newspapers would probably work too…the funny pages would make a fun envelope as well!).

For a step-by-step guide, read County Living’s article. Read more: How to Make an Envelope Out of Paper – DIY Paper Envelope Craft – Country Living

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Would March Madness be the Same Without Paper Brackets?

By Paige Wills in Facts About The Paper Industry, Why Choose Paper?

2008 NAIA Bracket

Image via Wikipedia

It’s March and that can only mean one thing: college basketball. Now imagine a March without paper brackets! Paper is a very important part of March Madness.

March madness is officially upon us as the first round of the NCAA tournament began yesterday. A lot of people watch the games at work or even call in sick. No matter if you are a college basketball fan or not, you probably have filled out a bracket once in your life.

Some people follow every team and keep up with the latest statistics. However, others simply pick teams by their name or team colors (these are usually the people that do the best!).

According to an article on Bloomberg Business Week’s website by Ira Boudway titled “The Legal Madness Around NCAA Bracket Pools,” here are a couple staggering statistics about how many brackets are filled out each year.

  • PickHoops processes 180,000 brackets annually
  • 4.5 million brackets are filled out at CBS Sports
  • 5.9 million brackets are filled out on ESPN’s free service

These numbers are nowhere close the total amount of brackets filled out annually. According to Boudway’s article“A 2009 Microsoft survey estimated that 58 million Americans fill out brackets, and according to Las Vegas oddsmaker Pregame.com, about $12 billion is wagered on the tournament.”

Now I’m sure some people fill out brackets online –only. However, a lot of people use paper. Just imagine if 58 million people filled out paper brackets! (That’s a lot of paper).

The goal is to fill out the perfect bracket. The odds are slim-to-none. According to an article on Yahoo News! By Eddie Pells titled, “Picking perfect bracket a tough numbers game,” “If you were to stack the amount of paper it would take to fill in every bracket with every possibility among the 68 teams who will play 67 games over the next three weeks, it would not fit inside the universe.”

Pells’ article also said “According to a study by bookofodds.com, the odds of picking a perfect bracket by always going with the better-seeded team are about 35.3 billion-1.”

However, if you filled out a perfect bracket, I feel like that would be a piece of paper you would be extremely proud of. I imagine the person would frame it!

I always fill out a bracket each year. I don’t use online services. I like to print out my bracket so I can fill it out. I also find it gratifying to check off my wins and losses. I also usually have my paper bracket near me while watching the games.

Share your thoughts. Do you fill out a bracket annually? If so, do you do it electronically or on paper? Tell me why you prefer the method you use? Would March Madness be the same without paper? Have you or anyone you’ve known ever filled out a perfect bracket?

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