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I sang at the U.S. Open

My grandmother took me to audition to sing "America the Beautiful" at the U.S. Open Tennis Tournament. The audition was at the famous Apollo Theater in Manhattan. It was such an honor just to stand on the stage. I didn't think I was going to get picked because there were more than 150 talented kids who auditioned. A few weeks after the audition, when I was starting to forget about it, they called and said that I had been chosen, and I was going to get to sing at the U.S. Open. I was blown away and very excited.

The day I was supposed to sing, they directed me to the VIP area and they gave me a VIP badge that allowed me to get food and go to places where other people aren't allowed. They showed me to my dressing room, and I started to get ready. Through a door was the main court of the stadium filled with more than 24,000 people, and I was doing vocal warm-ups right behind it. When they announced my name, I walked out there and saw my face on the jumbo screen. I took a breath and sang the song "America the Beautiful."

I was very nervous at first, but as I started to sing, my nerves went away. When I was done, everyone clapped and cheered. Then my family and I went back to our seats to watch the match. We watched Andy Murray win his match and he ended up winning the entire tournament. When we went home, we saw that I was on YouTube (see the video: and in the local paper for singing at the U.S. Open. It was a moment I'll never forget.

Air Hogs Battle Tracker's a great toy

The Air Hogs Battle Tracker (Spin Master) is an outstanding toy. I played with it all weekend and had a lot of fun. I found out that the helicopter's battery lasts up to 20 minutes before you need to charge it. It took me a while to learn to master the controls. If you crash too much, the helicopter may break. The automatic robotic turret (not shown) really works -- it shoots down the helicopter! But you can't fly too high or the turret's missiles can't reach you. You can choose to play by yourself or with someone else. One player can operate the turret and one the helicopter. I really like this toy, and I am happy to have it. This toy is good for all ages. I highly recommend it.

-- Robert Mieszala

CLASS OF THE WEEK Sue Lutcha's sixth-grade class, NORTH COUNTRY ROAD MIDDLE SCHOOL, Miller Place

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