Arts & Entertainment

Montville’s Zach Matari Visits Lazar to Help Deliver Anti-Bullying Message

On May 31, Montville's Zach Matari visited Lazar Middle School with the Teen Nation Tour to help deliver anti-bullying message. Credits: Hope White
Members of the Teen Nation Tour visited Lazar Middle School to deliver their anti-bullying message. Pictured areTru Fam, Zach Matari, Kristina Lachaga and Darla Beaux. Credits: Hope White
Zach Matari entertained the students at Lazar Middle School while also delivering an important anti-bullying message. Credits: Hope White
As part of the Teen Nation Tour, Kristina Lachaga talked to the students of Lazar Middle School about how to handle bullying, especially focused on social media.  Credits: Hope White
Kristina Lachaga performs many upbeat songs for Lazar Middle School as part of the Teen Nation Tour. Credits: Hope White
On the Teen Nation Tour, Sha and Just I of Tru Fam entertains the students of Lazar Middle School. Credits: Hope White
Tru Fam works the crowd at Lazar Middle School with their hip-hop while delivering the message that "bullying isn't cool." Credits: Hope White
Darla Beaux visited Lazar Middle School to discuss anti-bullying as part of the Teen Nation Tour. Darla's message was to not give bullying an audience. Credits: Hope White
Darla Beaux got the students of Lazar Middle School on their feet during her Teen Nation Tour visit. Credits: Hope White
As part of the Teen Nation Tour, Montville's Zach Matari visited Lazar Middle School and talked to the students about the different types of bullying. Credits: Hope White
After the Teen Nation Tour show on May 31, Montville's Zach Matari poses for a photo with Lazar Middle School students. Credits: Hope White
Credits: Hope White

MONTVILLE, NJ – On Friday, May 31, the students of Lazar Middle School were visited by The Teen Nation Tour, which is a peer-to-peer community service program created to educate and entertain youth about bullying in a way students can relate – through music.

One of the performers touring the nation to help raise awareness of just how serious bullying has become is Zach Matari. Matari was born and raised in Montville and graduated from MTHS in 2012.

“It’s wonderful that Zach has decided to ‘come home’,” Lazar Middle School Principal Sharon Carr said. “We can never do this enough. Every chance we get to focus on anti-bullying is important. This connection is great because Zach is not only talented but ‘cool’ and look where he is now after sitting in this gym not too long ago.”

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The Teen Nation Tour is free for schools and features young emerging recording artists from around the country who perform Top 40 country, pop and rock hits. Artists share personal bullying experiences, discuss the types of bullying and prevention options.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cEBLCw100ds

While thoughtfully engaging the students of Lazar in their messages about bullying, the performers of The Teen Nation tour treated all in attendance to quite an energetic show. The performers who joined Matari that day were Kristina Lachaga, Tru Fam and Darla Beaux.   

Beaux’s message for the students was to not give bullying an audience.

“Each and every one of you are different, but that’s what makes you unique,” Beaux said. “So don’t be afraid to stand up for who you are.”

Lazar Assistant Principal John Piselli thanked all of the performers for coming out and sharing their anti-bullying messages which he felt were “very fitting for us in our school and in schools around the nation today”. He also thanked the Drug Awareness Council for providing the assembly.

“For all 8th graders, I want you to leave here today thinking about values, character and ethics,” Piselli said. “For all 7th graders, I give you a challenge next year to set a good example for the rest of the school and all 6th graders should focus on helping the incoming sixth grade class.”

The Teen Nation Tour was created and executed by former business owner, police officer and veteran Lee Wilson, 43, after his son was bullied and beaten on a school bus, videotaped, and posted on YouTube. He founded the tour to in an effort to take a stand against bullying and to provide young people a creative outlet to spread the anti-bullying message.  What once started as a grassroots effort in 2012 with a few stops has quickly grown to more than 330 school and other venue performances in about 40 cities, 22 states, reaching more than a half-million people in 2014.

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