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Take the Mic: How smashing a piñata became a joyful memory for one Tacoma family

Parker Miles Blohm
Barrett Stowe (second from right) is a 16-year-old sophomore at Tacoma School of the Arts. He's pictured here with his mother, Courtney, father, James, 14-year-old sister, Audrey, and the dinosaur piñata."

“My happiest quarantine memory is beating the crap out of a piñata.”

That vivid opening line comes from Barrett Stowe, a 16-year-old sophomore at Tacoma School of the Arts. He contributed a story about his moment of joy amid the pandemic for KNKX’s Take the Mic youth voices project.

Finding ways to stay entertained during the statewide stay-at-home order has been a challenge for everyone. There are only so many hours you can pass watching movies or doing jigsaw puzzles.

The Stowe family found a unique way to break up the monotony and get out their frustrations. They stuffed a dinosaur piñata with candy and took turns whacking it with a piece of PVC pipe.

“I wasn’t the one who ended up breaking open the piñata,” Barrett said. “That honor goes to my mom, who hit it so hard that it flew into our ceiling and kind of cracked open.”

Listen to the audio above to hear his full story.

We’d like to hear from more teens and kids about their lives during the coronavirus pandemic — hard times, joyful times and everything in between. For more information on how to submit a story, click here.

Education Coronavirus Coverage
In July 2017, Ashley Gross became KNKX's youth and education reporter after years of covering the business and labor beat. She joined the station in May 2012 and previously worked five years at WBEZ in Chicago, where she reported on business and the economy. Her work telling the human side of the mortgage crisis garnered awards from the Illinois Associated Press and the Chicago Headline Club. She's also reported for the Alaska Public Radio Network in Anchorage and for Bloomberg News in San Francisco.