Tag Archives: Webster schools

Spring musical season is upon us

26 Jan

We’re about to face some of the coldest weather we’ve had all winter. But perhaps this news will warm your heart:

IT’S SPRING MUSICAL TIME! 

Both Willink and Spry middle schools and Thomas and Schroeder high schools will be staging their spring musical productions in the next two months.

Willink kicks off the schedule next weekend with Off to See the Wizard, presented in three shows on Friday Feb. 1 and Saturday Feb. 2.

Daniella Gibson leads a cast and crew of more than 100 sixth, seventh and eighth graders as they present the well-known story of a Kansas farm girl, her dog Toto and their adventures in Oz. Joining her as the main characters are Trevor Heaphy as the Scarecrow, Marcello Servanti as the Tinman, Ryley Norton as the Cowardly Lion, and Martina Nicolay as the Wizard of Oz.

This musical classic will be performed at Willink Middle School, 900 Publishers Parkway,  on Friday, February 1 at 7:30 p.m., and Saturday, February 2 at 1 and 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $9.00 per adult and $6 for students and senior citizens and can be purchased the week of January 28 through the Drama Club website .

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anythinggoes_home400

Next up is Anything Goes at Webster Schroeder the following weekend, Feb. 7 through 9.

The scene is a cruise ship in the late 1930s. Carefree broker Billy Crocker finds out that the woman he’s in love with is engaged to someone else and about to set sail on the luxury liner S.S. American, he sets in motion a madcap plan to stow away on the ship, win socialite Hope Harcourt’s hand, impress his boss, and evade law enforcement who think he’s Snake Eyes Johnson, Public Enemy #1.

It’s a funny musical adventure, packed with Cole Porter songs you already love (like “Friendship” and “I Get a Kick Out of You”).  Showtimes are Feb. 7, 8 and 9 at 7:30 p.m., with a matinee performance on Feb. 9 at 2 p.m.

Tickets are $10-$15, available online at www.Showtix4u.com or at any Wegmans.

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guys and dolls

The Spry Middle School Drama Club will present Guys and Dolls, Jr. on March 8 and 9.

In case you’re not familiar with this show, here’s a quick description from imdb.com:

All the hot gamblers are in town, and they’re all depending on Nathan Detroit to set up this week’s incarnation of “The Oldest Established Permanent Floating Crap Game in New York”; the only problem is, he needs $1000 to get the place. Throw in Sarah Brown, who’s short on sinners at the mission she runs; Sky Masterson, who accepts Nathan’s $1000 bet that he can’t get Sarah Brown to go with him to Havana; Miss Adelaide, who wants Nathan to marry her; Police Lieutenant Brannigan, who always seems to appear at the wrong time; and the music/lyrics of Frank Loesser, and you’ve got quite a musical.

The original 1955 movie starred Frank Sinatra and Marlon Brando. When it was made into a Broadway play, it was just as entertaining, and many of the songs have become embedded in our theater culture (including “Luck Be a Lady”).

I don’t have a whole lot of details yet, but it appears that Guys and Dolls will take the stage on Friday March 8 at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday March 9 at 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. More details to come as I find out about them, but you can also keeps tabs on the show at the Spry Drama Club website.

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Concluding the spring musical schedule this year is Webster Thomas’ production of Cinderella from March 28-30.

This will the Rodgers & Hammerstein, Broadway version of the play, so it should be spectacular. I’m still getting details about this as well, but I do know that the shows will be March 28, 29 and 30 at 7 p.m., with a matinee on March 30. Tickets will be $12.

The cast will also be hosting a breakfast with Cinderella on Saturday, March 23 at 9 a.m., which will be a great way for your kids to get excited about the show. More details will follow about that as well.

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High schools’ fight songs update!

12 Jan

capture

A couple of days ago I posted a blog about Jason Hammersla, a 1995 Webster graduate, who has written two songs which he hoped might be adopted as alma maters for Webster Schroeder and Thomas high schools.

At the end of that blog I asked readers to let me know of any such songs exist for either or both of the schools. On Friday morning, I got an email from Webster Thomas principal Glenn Widor, who informed me that Thomas does indeed have an alma mater, which is sung at every graduation.

I further heard from Thomas music teacher Brenda Nitsch that Kyle Sackett ’08, alumnus of the Thomas vocal music program, wrote the song while studying music education and performance at Fredonia.

Here it is:

Near the shores of Lake Ontario stands a school which we hold dear.
Webster Thomas, we’ll make a promise to always keep you near.
With every teacher, staff and student our moral compass will be aligned
And together we will fight with her colors blue and white!

Live forever Titan pride!

I still haven’t heard anything about a Schroeder alma mater,  however. If I do, I’ll let you know. In the meantime, here’s the link again to my previous blog where you can see what Jason wrote.

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Webster community mailbag

21 Nov

Before I get into a pile of holiday events, here are a few feel-good stories about some great things our kids are doing for the community.

brownies 1

Back: Lucy Ellsworth, Aubrey Rugg, Sydney Herman, Molly Murphy, Addison Ball, Molly Clausen, Annabell Jacobus, Sophia Sherman, Mikayla Young. Front: Averye Rugg, Emma Kimball, Bray Dreschler. (Provided)

Webster Brownie Troop 60670, a third grade troop based at Plank South Elementary School, went to Wegmans last Wednesday to buy a meal for a Webster family in need of a Thanksgiving meal. For many of the girls, this was their third year doing this. They created a budget, learned about healthy food options and price shopped while in the store.

Jessica Ellsworth, who sent the photo, wrote,

These girls are no strangers to community service. In the past they have gone to Hope House, made toys and collected donations for animals in the shelter, made birthday bags (cake mix, frosting, candles, party hats, etc.) for the food pantry and rang the bell for Salvation Army.

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A group of 18 Webster Schroeder students got together recently to provide Thanksgiving meals to 20 families at Mt Hope Family Center (MHFC).

On Monday, several MHFC vehicles arrived at Webster Schroeder’s main office to pick up boxes and bags with all the fixings for 20 Thanksgiving meals that would be provided to at-risk children and families supported by MHFC. The groceries were purchased by Webster Schroeder students who began fundraising for these Thanksgiving meals last month.

This is the seventh year students have partnered with MHFC to raise funds to supply Thanksgiving meals for those served by the organization. They personally reached out to other Webster Schroeder High School clubs, sports teams, organizations, faculty, staff, and Webster businesses to raise more than $2,400 for the Thanksgiving meals. Extra funds raised will provide holiday gifts for children from each of the 20 families that receive a basket.

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Holiday special events are beginning to come fast and furious. The ones I’m telling you about today won’t be happening for a week or two, but I wanted to make sure you got them on your calendar.

Country Gardeners of Webster will host their annual sale Saturday December 1.

Presented jointly with the Klemwood Garden Club and the Webster Arboretum Association, the sale will take place at the Webster Parks and Recreation Center from 9 a.m. to noon.

The sale features a variety of creative wreaths, sleighs, table arrangements, cases and other unique items hand crafted from fresh, seasonal greens. It’s a great opportunity to buy a decorative piece for your home, or perhaps housewarming gift. This sale regularly sells out, so get there early. Admission is free.

The Recreation Center is located at 1350 Chiyoda Drive.

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There are three upcoming dates on the Webster Village Band schedule you won’t want to miss.

First, watch for them on a float at Webster’s annual Parade of Lights along Main Street on Saturday Dec. 1. The parade begins at 6:30 p.m. at Phillips Rd. and travels west along Main. The band will play Christmas favorites along the parade route.

On Thursday, Dec. 6, the band will perform a concert at Eastview Mall in Victor from 7 to 8 p.m. They’ll be in front f the J.C. Penney Store, playing Christmas favorites and other popular tunes.

Finally, on Saturday, Dec. 8 at 2 p.m. the band will hold their annual Christmas Concert 
at Webster Thomas High School, 800 Five Mile Line Road. It’s always the last and most spectacular concert of the season. You’ll hear plenty of holiday favorites, including a special reading of “Twas the Night Before Christmas” narrated by Barbara Midura. Light refreshments will follow the concert.

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The Pickled Paintbrush, one of the Village of Webster’s newest shops, will hold a Gingerbread House Workshop on Saturday, December 8.

Two classes will be offered, from 3 to 4:30 and 6 to 7:30. Bring the whole family to decorate a gingerbread house complete with all of the candy trimmings. Cost is $35 per family, which includes one gingerbread house. Additional gingerbread people cookies will be available to decorate for $5.

There will even be live holiday music, courtesy my good friends Dave and Patty Wyble.

Spaces are limited, so register early. Click here for more details and registration information. The Pickled Paintbrush is located at 36 East Main St., Webster.

By the way, the last time we heard from The Pickled Paintbrush, it didn’t even have furniture. Here’s what it looks like now, in photos I took last weekend at their opening celebration:

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Since we’re talking about cookies….

The Women’s Club of Webster will hold their 26th Annual Christmas Cookie Sale on Saturday Dec. 8, from 10 a.m. to noon (or sold out) at the Webster Public Library.

Many varieties of homemade holiday cookies will be available. The cost is $9.00 per pound. Proceeds from the sale will benefit the club’s scholarship funds and many other programs in the Webster community.

The Webster Public Library is located in the Webster Plaza at 980 Ridge Rd. Entrance is at the back of the plaza.

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Dust off those yearbooks

18 Sep

The yearbook staff at Webster Schroeder High School needs your help.

This year marks the 100th year of the Webster Schroeder/Webster High School yearbook. To commemorate the occasion, the yearbook club would like to feature all of the past yearbooks in this year’s edition.

Problem is, many of those yearbooks are missing from their collection.

That’s where you come in. They’re hoping that there are folks out there who can help them fill in the gaps, and let them borrow (or better yet, donate) the following missing volumes:  1919, 1921, 1927, 1932, 1937, 1941, 1942, 1943, 1988, 1990, 1991 and 1994.

If you have any of these yearbooks and would be willing to donate or loan them to the school, please contact yearbook club advisor Stephanie Metz-Miller at stephanie_metzmiller@webstercsd.org.

Also, rumor has it that there was one year among those in which the yearbook wasn’t published. If you have that information, Mrs. Metz-Miller would love to know that as well.

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The verdict is in.

In one of my blogs last week, I mentioned that Plank North Elementary School has a new Pioneer mascot. He was introduced at the school’s Friday assembly the first week of school. He didn’t have an name, so the students were given the opportunity to propose one.

Ballots were collected all last week and principal Craig Bodensteiner announced the winning moniker yesterday on the school’s morning show.

May I officially introduce Pride the Pioneer!

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Webster Tuesday mailbag

27 Jun

mailbagHere are a few community notes of interest.

Webster Brownie Troop Makes Blankets for Children in Need

Webster Girl Scout Brownie troop 60392 recently made knotted fleece blankets to donate to Project Linus, which then distributes them to children who are critically ill, have been traumatized, or are experiencing another form of need.

The 11 third-graders from Plank South Elementary made this a featured part of a sleepover event. They then donated them to Project Linus through Cafe Sewciety Quilts on Empire Blvd.

Troop 60392 Blankets

Pictured in the photo (from bottom left clockwise) are Megan Kelly, Ella Ellsworth, Kate Sayers, Becca, Dolan, Gianna DeMarco, Sophia Hachee, Olivia Salafia, Ashley Huss, and Avarie Chalachan. Not pictured: Mackenzie Mihalitsas and McKenna Simmons.

Webster Marching Band Boosters Host Food Truck Rodeo

The Webster Marching Band Boosters have announced their second annual Food Truck Rodeo, scheduled for Friday July 21 from 5 to 9 pm in Webster Schroeder High School’s front parking lot.

The Marching Band Boosters sponsor various fundraising events throughout the year to help pay for the Webster Marching Band’s equipment, show productions, and competition-related trip expenses.

Eleven food trucks have already signed on for the event, including Macarollin, Tuscan Wood Fired Pizza, Rob’s Kabobs, The Meatball Truck Co., Midnight Smokin’ BBQ, Meat the Press, Le Petit Poutine, WingNutz, Abbott’s Frozen Custard, Kona Ice, and Smoothies Plus.

There will also be face painting for the kids, a visit by a West Webster Fire Department truck, and live music provided by the Aaron Rizzo Trio. Admittance to the rodeo is FREE, and all proceeds from the food trucks will benefit the Marching Band Boosters and Webster Marching Band members.

Webster Schroeder High School is located at 875 Ridge Road.

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Book battle at Plank North

2 Jun

Finalists

Gretchen Pulver, left, with this year’s Plank North Battle of the Books finalists.

Now these are the kinds of battles you WANT to hear about.

Plank North Elementary School just concluded its annual Battle of the Books, a two-month long weekly contest which pits students in each of the school’s fifth grade classes against one another in a challenge which tests the students’ knowledge of literature.

The students divide themselves up into three-or-four person teams and come up with fanciful team names like the “Moolalas,” “The Athletic Dabbers” and the “Undercover Gymnasts.” Then they try to become experts in the eight different books chosen for that year’s competition.

In each of the first three rounds, held during the classes’ normal library time, the teams are asked 16 questions — two from each book. The top scoring team from each class then moved on to the final round.

The entire Plank North fifth grade gathered in the school’s cafeteria Wednesday afternoon to watch the final battle and cheer on the teams — The READ-ATHLONS, Tropical Pineapples, Bookish Bunch and The Page Turners.

It was a tense contest. Gretchen Pulver, the school’s Library Media Specialist and the event’s organizer, said that she has never before seen the final scores so close.

In the end, the READ-ATHLONS came out on top with 49 points, winning the coveted trophy. The Tropical Pineapples and the Bookish Bunch tied for second with 46 points, and the Page Turners came in third with 43 points.

Plank North is just one of many schools in our district which hold this annual event. Kudos to the dedicated librarians who spend so much time organizing the battles and finding such a creative way to encourage our children to read and love books.

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THE READ-ATHLONS

This year’s Battle champions, the READ-ATHLONS. Clockwise from left: Analise Alexander, Alyssa Doody, Bizzie Baglieri, and Leah Marcell.

Mini Webster mailbag

16 May

Just a few interesting notes this morning.

For starters, Webster Schroeder and Webster Thomas high schools will both have new assistant principals next year.

Karen Murray has accepted the position as assistant principal (alpha M-R) for Webster Thomas High School’s Gold House, effective July 1. Murray is replacing current interim assistant principal Jeremy Slack.

New APs for web

Karen Murray and Dan Sepka

Murray, a Webster resident and graduate, previously served as a middle school ELA teacher and literacy specialist at both Spry and Willink middle schools. She also was a high school literacy specialist at Webster Thomas HS.

 

Dan Sepka will be the new assistant principal (alpha A-E) for Webster Schroeder High School, also effective July 1, replacing current interim assistant principal Jim Vitale.

Sepka is currently an integrated co-teacher at Spry Middle School and prior to that, worked for 10 years at State Road Elementary School as a consultant teacher.
He has spent his entire teaching career in Webster CSD as a co-teacher in all subject areas, and has been a Warrior varsity assistant coach since 2005.  He is also a graduate of Webster Schroeder HS and a Webster resident.

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The Webster Parks and Recreation Department has asked me to remind everyone about their great summer camp programs.

Right now is the time to sign up for programs to keep your kids active and entertained this summer. The Rec offers both full-day camps for children ages kindergarten through 5th grade, and fun camps for teenagers.

In full-day camp, kids are grouped by grade and rotate through a variety of indoor and outdoor activities. Campers will also enjoy several field trips to miniature golf, Seabreeze, bowling, movies ad more.

The Fun Camps will take teenagers to a new exciting destination every dayfrom ice skating to RocVenture, a baseball game to paintball.

The Rec also offers a preschool camp for children ages 3 to 5, and half-day fun camp for kids in kindergarten through 3rd grade.

For more details about all the options, click here.

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opioidThe Monroe County Legislature and the school district are teaming up for a very important presentation on May 31 to raise awareness about the rising threat of opioid abuse in our community.

The presentation will be held Wednesday May 31 at 7 pm at the Webster Community Center, 1350 Chiyoda Drive. Click on the poster for more information.

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Friday Webster Mailbag

4 May

mailbag

The Penfield Village Nursery School will be sponsoring a golf tournament on Friday June 2 to help celebrate the school’s 50th anniversary.

The tournament, held at Shadow Lake Country Club in Penfield, costs $100 per player, which includes 18 holes, a golf cart, and goodie bag, raffles and lunch.

Registration begins at 11:30 a.m. and play begins at noon.

Interested players, sponsors or businesses interested in donating prizes should contact Kacey Kiley at kldunbar@yahoo.com.  Organizers ask that completed registration forms and payment be submitted by May 15.

The Penfield Village Nursery School and Kindergarten is located at 1862 Penfield Road. Read more about the school in a blog I wrote about them last fall.

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The Webster Arboretum Plant Sale will return on Saturday May 13, from 8:30 a.m. to noon at the Arboretum, 1700 Shlegel Road.

Visitors will find plants of all varieties offered for sale by the Arboretum, local commercial growers and local clubs. The Country Gardeners of Webster Garden Club members have chosen selected plants from their own gardens. What this means is that all of the plants for sale will definitely grow in Webster with some sun, water and your tender loving care.

Celebrate the much-anticipated arrival of spring by stopping by the Webster Arboretum on he 13th and get some new plants for your garden (and maybe a Mother’s Day gift). Admission is free and the event happens rain or shine.

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And the accolades for our Webster music teachers just keep on coming.

The College Board has appointed Webster Central School District’s Laura D’Angelo to its Advanced Placement (AP) Music Theory Development Committee.

D’Angelo has been teaching music for 23 years, 20 in Webster Central School District where she presently teaches Music Theory I and AP Music Theory at both high schools. Laura currently serves The College Board by grading AP Music Theory exams. She also has been a speaker at the AP National Conference, as well as at the reading sessions for AP Music Theory.

“We have one of, if not the, biggest high school music theory programs in the nation. When I go to Cincinnati to grade exams (for the AP board), Webster is very well known for our program. I am extremely fortunate to be in a district that supports this program,” D’Angelo said.

D’Angelo’s three-year appointment to the AP Music Theory Development Committee will begin in July.

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In other school news, remember that the Board of Education and budget vote is scheduled for Tuesday May 16th, from 6 am to 9 pm at Webster Schroeder High School, 875 Ridge Road.

You get find out more about the proposed budget by clicking here, and you can meet the Board of Education candidates Wednesday May 10 at 7 pm in the Spry Middle School auditorium. Four candidates are running for three positions this year. They are: Andy LaManna, Mike Suffoletto, Bill Kent and Jan Strege.

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WCSD community comes together to support State Road Elementary

14 Apr

Even in the most difficult of situations, a ray of light often shines through.

I’ve seen that occur repeatedly in Webster. When bad things happen and threaten to overwhelm our friends and neighbors with negativity, we come together as a community to support each other and bring a bit of sunshine to a dismal situation.

An excellent example happened recently when a disturbing incident took place at State Road Elementary School. The details of that event don’t need to be rehashed here, but I would like to bring attention to what happened afterwards.

Realizing that their colleagues were going through a tough time, teachers and staff members at Klem Road South and Plank Road North elementary schools decided to show State Road some love.

On Tuesday April 4, Klem South provided cookies and milk for their State Road colleagues — the ultimate “I love you” snack.

The previous day, Plank North went all out, setting up an entire breakfast buffet in the staff’s lunchroom, including bagels, muffins, yogurt and crock pots filled with oatmeal. Inspirational and humorous quotes sprinkled throughout the room reaffirmed the message of love and support.

The thank-you messages which came flowing into Plank North later that day showed how much State Road appreciated the effort. Here are a few of them:

Just wanted to say “thank you” to our PN friends for treating us with breakfast on Monday! It’s been a tough month, but it has also been awesome to see our One Webster comes together to support each other! — Keary Pender

I am so honored to be part of both of these amazing schools. Thank you Plank North family for supporting my other State Road family! I have already heard from many people over there about how much they appreciated the thought and kindness!! — Lindsay MacKenzie

Your school is so thoughtful! The breakfast & inspirational quotes are wonderful & beautiful. Thank you so much for your generous hearts! — Stephanie Jones

No words can express the gratitude I, and many others, have towards all of you. The spread was amazingly delicious but the posters and sayings were all so appropriate and really hit the mark on how we are feeling. Everything really touched our hearts. We are a community, you celebrate together and grieve together. I am grateful to be part of Webster. — AnnMarie Johansson

State Road principal Christine Noeth-Abele said the support did not stop there.

Our parent community and the PTSA (have) been providing us with love and food (cookie trays, fruit, breakfast, kind words, inspirational posters and flowers). We have had an incredible amount of support from everyone, including district office and our superintendent.

The kindness, compassion and support of the Webster community will never cease to amaze me. We can’t make unfortunate and uncomfortable situations go away but we can help each other through.

I am fortunate to work in such a caring and supportive environment. State Road is truly a family.

THIS is the wonderful school district in which I work, and the wonderful people with whom I spend my days. These are the people who teach and care for your children all day long.

We could not ask for a more caring school community.

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Oak Tree Award winners announced

13 Apr

The 2017 Oak Tree Awards for teaching excellence have been announced, and the winners are …..

Stacy Russotti, a fifth grade teacher at Plank South Elementary School, and Dave Stacy RussottiKowalski, a seventh grade science teacher at Willink Middle School.

Stacy was nominated by parent Patty Kaptein and received letters of recommendation from Plank South Principal Scott Wilcox and fellow fifth grade teacher Ronnette West, herself a previous Oak Tree recipient.

In the nomination letter, Kaptein wrote,

One special communication that really struck me at the beginning of the school year was in September (Russotti) personally called every student’s family member to check in on how the students where adjusting to her fifth grade classroom and to address any issues happening in her classroom early on. My daughter’s fifth grade class (was introduced) to the Honor Flight Rochester program…(with) students from the fifth grade attending the Honor Flight Rochester welcome home ceremony at the Rochester International Airport.

Dave Kowalski

Dave Kowalski was nominated by Bill Ottman, WCSD director of science and technology, and Brian Zimmer, WCSD director of educational technology and information. He also received letters of recommendation from Principal Gindling and Willink seventh grade English teacher Todd Putnam, who is also a previous Oak Tree recipient.

In nominating him, Ottman said that Kowalski is a

true collaborator… with a deep understanding of the concepts and skills you teach, a love of children, and a willingness and desire to continually challenge yourself to stay current and relevant to your students.

 

Congratulations to both recipients.

SparX wins top honors

Sparx Innovation in Control award

And while we’re at it, congratulations also go out to our Webster schools SparX robotics team, which recently won the Innovation in Control Award at the F.I.R.S.T. Buckeye Regional held in Cleveland, OH, the first weekend in April.

The award is presented to the team in which their spokesperson can identify and describe the controls innovation and can trace its conception, design, manufacturing/ assembly, or deployment. The control system must be innovative and unique and integrated with the machine, human players, strategy, etc., in concept and execution. The innovation must be practical, addressing the game’s challenge (not just a cute idea), and reliable under the stress of competition.

SparX received a trophy and plaque for the honor.

I got a chance to see this group of young people demonstrating their robotic handiwork at Community Arts Day. Their accomplishments are always impressive.

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