At Camp Naru, Nobody Is ‘an Outlier’

At Camp Naru, Nobody Is ‘an Outlier’

On Camp Naru’s sprawling 640-acre campus, each day started with conversations about the Korean American experience. Campers then participated in activities like taekwondo and cooking authentic Korean dishes. Chloe Kim, the Korean American snowboarder and two-time Olympic gold medalist, even stopped by one day.

“Our upbringings may be unique; however, there’s a lot of cultural components that tie us together. I think when we’re able to cultivate a community that really understands that, it really allows us to feel more comfortable and secure,” the camp’s director, Benjamin Oser, said. A Korean adoptee who grew up outside Princeton, N.J., he attended an immersion camp himself in the mid-1990s and estimates that Naru is now one of about 15 such camps in the United States.

This year, the camp will be held in East Stroudsburg, Penn., on the eastern side of the Poconos. Bringing the campers together in these unique natural spaces, away from their everyday homes, “builds that sense of security, and, in a way, it’s like building a bubble,” he explained. And within that safe harbor, the campers find the freedom to explore.

Three girls sitting on the floor of a wood-paneled room, in front of rows of red velvet seats. The girl on the left wears a white T-shirt, a green sweatshirt and glasses and holds a pen and a piece of paper. The girls on the right wear a white T-shirt and a blue T-shirt and pink shorts and gesture toward the piece of paper.

“I didn’t really know Korean that well. And I only went to the country once. I felt like my whole life has just been spent in the U.S. — that I’m not, like, Korean Korean, I guess,” Ryan, at right, said.

Five young people sit on a carpeted floor against a wood paneled wall, below a projector screen with an English and Korean lesson projected on it. Three of the children wear red T-shirts that say Camp Naru. The fourth, who is older, wears a red Camp Naru polo. The fifth, on the end, wears a white T-shirt with pink, green and yellow flowers on it.

Camp Naru, and the community she found there, helped her bring that discomfort into focus, and start to dismantle it. “It helped me realize that I am who I am, and I don’t think I should have to choose,” she said.

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Salma Hayek and Daughter Valentina Are the Perfect Match in Coordinating Oscars 2023 Red Carpet Looks

Salma Hayek and Daughter Valentina Are the Perfect Match in Coordinating Oscars 2023 Red Carpet Looks

We’re totally blushing over this mother-daughter duo. 

Before the 2023 Oscars kicked off March 12, Salma Hayek, 56, stepped onto the red carpet with a very special guest. The “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish” star chose to invite daughter Valentina Paloma Pinault, 15, as her plus one for the biggest award show of the year. 

The pair proved to be the perfect match as they wore coordinating red looks at the Dolby Theatre. 

Hayek opted for a sparking Gucci dress styled by Rebecca Corbin-Murray while her daughter with husband François-Henri Pinault opted for a strapless red gown with a tulle bottom.

The legendary actress was in attendance as her movie “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish” was nominated for Best Animated Feature Film. Ultimately, Guillermo del Toro’s “Pinocchio” took home the trophy in one of the show’s first awards of the night.


Salma Hayek and her daughter Valentina Paloma Pinault attend the 95th Annual Academy Awards at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California on March 12, 2023.
Photo by Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images

PHOTOS: Oscars 2023 Red Carpet Couples

But just because Hayel’s movie didn’t win big, doesn’t mean she wasn’t going to have a fabulous night with her daughter.

While at the Dolby Theater, the pair was spotted posing for photos with Pedro Pascal and his sister Javiera Balmaceda.

In other words, someone is about to have a pretty cool school night.

Salma Hayek was joined by her daughter Valentina for the Marvel “Eternals” red carpet. She spoke to Access Hollywood’s Sibley Scoles about playing her role of Ajak who was written as a man in the comics, “It hit me really hard and I nearly cried and I have to hold it, I saw a whole family of Latinas dressed as Ajak…” She also explained the importance of having such a diverse film, “I really wanted my daughter to see this and be a part of this.” “Eternals” is out in theaters on Nov. 5.

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Where the Band Kids Are

Where the Band Kids Are

Contrary to what the movies will tell you, the marching band at Ravenna High School is pretty well respected. This year’s homecoming king and queen were both members. “It definitely helps that we have a small school, because we’ve all known each other our whole lives,” said Trinity Dunch, 17, who plays the trombone. “Everybody knows everybody. Someone you’ve grown up with, you don’t really pick on.”

But there are plenty of other things to worry about. Ravenna, Ohio, is not the sort of place anybody wants to make movies about, Emmanuel Miller, 17, a senior tuba and sousaphone player, said. It’s the sort of place you leave — dwarfed by its next-door neighbor, Kent, home to Kent State University, which has more undergraduates (more than 20,000) than Ravenna has people (just over 11,000).

When Ashley Markle returned to photograph the band students at her alma mater, the most striking difference in her hometown was how anxious everyone seemed: about exams and extracurriculars, dates, college prep, figuring out what’s next. (Ashley, who graduated in 2013, was in Ravenna’s band, too; she played the flute.)

One thing that hasn’t changed: the escape that the band room can offer.

When she was a student at Ravenna, “band didn’t even feel like part of the school, to be honest,” said Ashley. “It felt like I was a part of something special and important. I felt that I could make a difference on a large team of people all striving for something we cared about.”

The reflection of two girls in a white-framed mirror, which is hanging over a wod door in a bedroom. The girl in front is sitting on the floor and wearing a dark green tank top. The girl in the back is reclining on a bed and wears a black T-shirt and plaid pajama pants.

These days, that team snaps people up early. Julia Stratton, 15, in back, and her girlfriend, Nina Fuller, 16, seated on the floor, have both been playing flute since the fifth grade.

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At This Indian Wrestling Academy, Young Women Find Freedom and Hope

At This Indian Wrestling Academy, Young Women Find Freedom and Hope

As the winter sun ascends over a mustard farm, pale orange bleeding into sharp yellow, a line of 36 girls all dressed alike — T-shirts, track pants, crew cuts — emerges into an open field, rubbing sleep from their eyes. Under a tin shed, they sit on their haunches, bent over stone mortars. For the next 20 minutes, they crush raw almonds into a fine paste, straining out a bottle of nut milk. They will need it to regain their strength.

Started in 2017, Yudhveer Akhada is a residential wrestling academy for girls, run by a family of competitive wrestlers in Sonipat, a semi-urban industrial town in Haryana, a province in northern India bordering Delhi. Currently it hosts 45 trainees who, on arrival, are typically between 10 and 15 and are expected to stay until they are 20, immersing themselves in the burgeoning community of girls who wrestle. Every student who enters the academy has the same goal: to win an Olympic medal for India.

“In India we are surrounded by the stories of violence against women,” said Prarthna Singh, the photographer on this story. Yet the country has also seen rising participation in women’s sports, like wrestling. “Within those patriarchal constructs, we have these academies where young women are carving out a space for themselves as sportswomen. It’s inspiring to see them put in the dedication and rigor it takes to become one.”

After the warm-up, their training varies. Cardio days can mean a cross-country run or stair climbing. On sports days, they play handball or basketball. Strength-building days are the most demanding of all: The girls must drag blocks of wood across the field or pull themselves up several meters of gnarly ropes.

A young woman wearing a blue sweatshirt, black pants and sneakers, holding onto a rope suspended in the air. She is level with the top of a tree, which is to her right. To her left are more ropes and a wood post.

“Had we not come here, our lives would have been very different,” said Siksha Kharb, above, a 16-year-old girl from a farming family in Sonipat. If she weren’t wrestling, she said, “I would drop out of school to be married off.”

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Sam Smith Goes Viral — Again — With Balloon-Like Brit Awards Outfit

Sam Smith Goes Viral — Again — With Balloon-Like Brit Awards Outfit

Musician Sam Smith turned heads with the eye-catching black latex outfit the “Unholy” singer wore to the Brit Awards Saturday night in London.

The distinctive jumpsuit, designed by Harri, had inflatable arms and legs that quickly became the most buzzed about look of the night, trumping Harry Styles’ black velvet suit with its giant satin organza flower around his neck.

Smith’s look, which included black platform heeled boots, had its fans, but also inspired some to take to social media to make jokes about UFOs and Billy Connolly’s “incontinence pants” come to life. Others wondered if it was an homage to one of David Bowie’s most memorable looks, the shiny, pinstripe jumpsuit with ballooning legs designed by Kansai Yamamoto that Bowie wore in 1973.

The BRIT Awards 2023 - VIP Access

Dave J Hogan/Getty Images

Sam Smith attends The Brit Awards 2023 at The O2 Arena on February 11, 2023 in London, England, in a design by Harri.

The designer of Smith’s outfit, Harri, told WWD that the look was intended to celebrate the natural form and “the beauty of being one’s self.”

“Sam was having a lot of hate comments recently after ‘Unholy’ about (their) body image,” Harri said. “I wanted to create an image which people have never seen Sam in.”

Last week, Smith, who goes by they/them pronouns, praised stylist Ben Reardon on Instagram, writing that he’s behind much of what they’ve worn over the past few years in videos and on red carpets.

“Ben, your talent and your vision is unprecedented in my life,” Smith wrote. “You have taught me so much and re-introduced me to art and creativity in a way that I never thought was possible. Thank you for helping me be brave and have fun at the same time. I love you and I am honoured to work with you daily x.”

Kim Petras and Sam Smith had an epic night at the 2023 Grammys. The pair won Best Pop Duo / Group Performance for their hit song, “Unholy.”

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The Magic of Your First Car

The Magic of Your First Car

The ability to get behind the wheel of a car for the first time and go anywhere is a distinct American rite of passage. For many young people, their first car grants them a freedom to explore their city on an intimate level, with their windows down and music blasting – and away from the prying eyes of parents. It can be a means to escape monotony and fear — especially during the height of the pandemic — and a gathering space where they can let it all go.

The photographer Adali Schell, 21, grew up in Los Angeles and spent last summer documenting the members of his creative community in their cars. In interviews conducted over the fall, they spoke about the joy of getting behind the wheel, creating a space of safety and curiosity for themselves and their fears about the future — including the increasingly damaging effects of climate change.

Finding a place to belong “feels so scarce” in L.A., Adali said. But in the confines of an old Mercedes Benz (now powered by vegetable oil), a former taxi cab, a beat-up Volvo and a “mom” car, this group of artists and students found “a stronger sense of self and sense of security.”

“It’s hard to find a home away from home, especially if you’re trying to find yourself or if you’re in a toxic living situation or whatever the situation might be,” said Adali. “The car is a remedy for a lot of those things. It’s both a thing that can take you somewhere and a thing that could really protect you.”

Two people and a white and grey dog sit close together in the backseat of a parked car. Behind them, through the back windshield, is a parking lot with trees.

Driving around on her own for the first time was exhilarating, Keni Titus, 21, at right, said. “It’s so interesting to be in charge, like, oh my God, if we want to go through the drive-through, we can go. You want to smoke a cigarette in my car? You can smoke a cigarette in my car.”

“That is the first taste of adulthood and ultimate freedom.”

A young person with dark hair and sunglasses stands outside a car, leaning into the open window of the driver's side with their arms crossed.

Kali Flanagan, 18, just got his license a few months ago. “I think a lot of people my age feel a lot of pent-up energy,” he said. “For one thing, the world is just overstimulating, especially with technology.”

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