TICONDEROGA - Ticonderoga students tested their engineering skills during the annual Kiwanis Bridge Building Contest recently.
Teams from Ticonderoga High School, Ticonderoga middle School and St. Mary's School competed. A total of 37 students on 11 teams took part.
Students were allowed 90 minutes to build their model bridges to meet size limitations using only the materials provided to them.
Following lunch provided by parents, the bridges were judged for attractiveness and efficiency to see which bridge could carry the greatest load for its weight.
Before the start of the contest, Ti Middle School Principal Bruce Tubbs welcomed the students. Ti Superintendent John McDonald, Jr. spoke with the students commending the event and encouraging students to consider engineering as a career.
"A special thanks go out to Bruce Tubbs and Jim Marshall for hosting the event at the middle school and to our judges, Tony De Franco, Joyce Cooper and Steve Boyce and to Kathy Marshall for her help with lunch," said Graham Bailey of the Kiwanis. "A final thank you goes to the Kiwanis members Ken Engler, Jack Bast, John Bartlett, Bill Bolton, Ross Kelly, Nancy Kelly, Sylvia Boyce and Joe McCranels for providing assistance during the event."
The contest was the culmination of a two-month program in which students were given design guidance and presentations from Bailey and John Grady of the New York State Department of Transportation along with teachers Pam Arzberger from St. Mary's, Paul Jebb from Ticonderoga High School and Jim Marshall from Ticonderoga Middle School. The teachers worked closely with their students on a weekly basis after school.
The winning middle school popsicle stick bridge was designed and built by Team Taco represented by Skyler Torrey and Mike Lapeter, which carried 121 pounds before finally collapsing.
Second place went to the Awesome Engineers team of Colvin Chapman, Samual Shelmadine and Tim Ryan.
Makayla Holt, Amanda Hurlburt and Taylor Suddard of St. Mary's took the 3rd place trophy.
Other middle school students involved in designing and constructing the bridges included Shelby Turner, Dusty Bright, Willa Shakeshaft, Logan Jordan, Karl teRiele, Collin Bresett, Dustin Hunsdon and Zack Parent.
St. Mary's was also represented by Cassie Reale, Jared Pike and Courtney Wranowsky Jake Mildon and Kathleen O'Neil.
The high school winners of the most efficient bridge were the team of Will Lawrie and Meghan Schyrer. They also won the first place trophy for the most attractive bridge.
Cory King and Chris Burns came in second place in both categories.
Other high school competitors were Nate Lenhart, Jake O'Hara, Corey King, Chris Burns, Brandon Russell, Kelly Dunn, Allen Zhang, Kevin Densmore, Kody Whitford, Chris Bennett, Krystie McGuire, Emilee Namer, Megan Scuderi and Taylor Ward.
In addition to the Kiwanis Club, Reale Construction Co. and International Paper helped sponsor the event.
The high school students will also design and build another bridge to compete in the National Engineers Week Model Bridge Building Contest to be held in Albany on Feb. 17.