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Shelby students advance in Odyssey competition

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1 team finishes first, but 4 will go to state

By Sharon Warner

Eleven teams from Shelby County competed in the Central Regional Odyssey of the Mind tournament on March 5, with one of them taking home first place and four advancing to the state-level competition.

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Odyssey of the Mind is a creative problem-solving competition that involves a “long term” performance problem, a spontaneous problem situation and a style category.

Each team of seven students presents its solution to a problem in an 8-minute performance and solves a spontaneous problem assigned on the day of the tournament. Style or the originality and creativity involved in their solution are also scored. 

The Le Tour Guide Division II team, consisting of seventh-grade students from West Middle and eighth-grade students from Collins High School, captured first place for their humorous performance involving the classical character Amelia Bedelia as a tour guide. The team from Collins was third in that category for its "Pantastic" tour, with Peter Pan as the guide.

The Good As Goldberg high school team from Shelby County High School placed second with its complex and creative device for hammering a nail into a piece of wood and also won the Ranatra Fusca Award for extraordinary creativity.

The Unhinged Structure team from Clear Creek Elementary also placed third in its division for its creative ”hinged” structure.

Those four qualified for the state competition at Northern Kentucky University on March 26. If they were to place first or second at the state competition, they will advance to World Finals at the University of Maryland in May.

Other teams also won awards for their efforts:

•The West Middle Good As Goldberg team got its banana cutting device to successfully complete its task and placed sixth in its division.

•The East Middle Le Tour Guide team had to face adversity when its backdrop arrived torn in many places. Team members worked extremely hard to repair it and gave an outstanding performance that incorporated mythological creatures. The team finished sixth.

•The Full Circle team placed third in spontaneous and seventh overall.

•The Clear Creek Elementary Mousemobiles team placed fourth in their division and the Good As Goldberg team finished sixth.

•Both primary teams from Painted Stone Elementary and Simpsonville participated in a non-competitive performance and received ribbons for their work.