Dawn Dean’s fifth-grade class’ ”Car for a Cause,” supporting a young cancer patient, races around the track during Creslane’s Soap Box Derby. Pushing (from left) are Slater Curtis and Cameron Couch. The rider is Sapphire Osorio. GINI DAVIS – THE CRESWELL CHRONICLE
A tantalizing array of uniforms and careers were represented by the judges and student creativity, innovation and caring were on display in the handcrafted cars as Creslane Elementary hosted its annual Soap Box Derby on April 27.
The cars’ designs featured unicorns, dragons and sharks, an ice cream truck, a racecar, Batman, Snoopy’s doghouse and much more. Four teams raced for each class, each comprised of two pushers and one rider. Each team raced one lap around a hay bale-lined track in the school gym. Teachers rode in the cars after the students raced.
For each grade, awards were presented for Fastest Car, Best Design and Most Class Spirit.
”The Creslane school community is amazing, and I appreciate the thought and effort that went into the planning and construction of each derby car for this year’s races,” said Creslane Principal Ryan Beck, who announced the awards.
The sentimental favorite – and the Spirit award winner for their grade – was certainly ”Car for a Cause.” Designed and built by Dawn Dean’s fifth-grade class, the car was covered in pink ribbons – symbolic of the fight against cancer – and class members wore pink tie-dyed T-shirts honoring a friend of one of Dean’s students; that friend, who has terminal cancer, is currently receiving hospice care.
Dean has a big bubble gum machine in her classroom, and each month the class donates the quarters that accumulate as students purchase gum to a good cause. For months, the class has been sending their quarters to that boy.
”Some students have even donated their own birthday money, and one student who doesn’t buy gum said she still wanted to donate the money she would have spent and brought in $10 or $20 worth of quarters,” said Creslane Secretary Paula Spriggs.
Students have also sent letters and kept journals while supporting this young cancer patient.
Given that the Soap Box Derby is one of Creslane’s monthly Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) events, the actions of Dean’s students certainly exemplify the safe, respectful and responsible – and caring and giving – behaviors that the PBIS program encourages and rewards.
This year’s Derby judges included Lane County Sheriff’s Office Sergeant Scott Denham and Deputy Bryan Holiman; South Lane County Fire & Rescue Firefighter/Paramedic Joe Millam; Eugene-Springfield Firefighter John Hyde; Marine Clint Stayton; Commercial Airline Pilot Eugene Grubbs; Creswell Youth Librarian Nick Caum; and two Creslane IRC volunteers.
”It was a fun time, and it was neat to see the array of uniforms,” Spriggs said.
”I would like to thank Paula Spriggs for arranging and coordinating the volunteer judges,” Beck said. ”I would also like to thank Kristi Kruger for planning and running this year’s PBIS Soap Box Derby, the volunteers who set up and took down the race track, the volunteers who oversaw the races, as well as the volunteers who took time out of their busy schedules to come and serve as judges.”
Questions: Kristi Kruger at [email protected] or 503-819-4565.