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Knox County school takes WinterKids gold; Smith School places 4th

Feb 11, 2020
Photo by: Fran Gonzalez Students at Leroy H. Smith in Winterport at school kickoff assembly in December 2019. The school placed in fourth place in the WinterKids 2020 competition.

Washington — Prescott Memorial School in Washington, Knox County, has won the coveted gold medal for first place and $5,000 cash in the third annual WinterKids Winter Games.

The regular competition period ended with six Maine school in a one-way tie for first place. A final tie-breaker challenge, creating a likeness of their school principal out of snow, ranked the schools first through sixth.

Jonesport Elementary School won silver ($3,000) for Washington County, and Dr. Levesque Elementary School in Frenchville won bronze ($1,500) for Aroostook County. WinterKids presented the prizes in ceremonies at the winning schools Feb. 5 and 6.

In Waldo County, Leroy H. Smith School in Winterport came in fourth, while Ames Elementary School in Searsmont tied for seventh place with three other schools. This was the first time Smith School had competed in the Winter Games, while Ames placed second last year.

Students from 32 elementary schools, representing each of Maine’s 16 counties, competed in the WinterKids Winter Games during the month of January. Competition was fierce, as students participated in a four-week series of outdoor physical activity, nutrition, family engagement, and winter carnival challenges designed to help them be active in the winter and learn healthy habits.

This year’s theme was Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math (STEAM). Each school was encouraged to involve volunteers, parents, healthy eating and active living organizations in their community, and hold a winter carnival to close out the month’s events.

Schools competed for weekly points based on the total percentage of the student body that participated. Schools received toolkits of resources and incentives to help students earn points, including the award-winning WinterKids Guide to Outdoor Active Learning — an easy-to-use resource to help kids move, learn and explore outdoors while meeting education standards. In addition, schools received bonus points for Weekly Wild Card Submissions, including a roster video, a meme, a photo and a boomerang.

“Each year of the games surpasses the last!" said WinterKids Executive Director Julie Mulkern. "We are so proud of each and every child, teacher, parent and staff that put their hearts and souls into this month-long challenge to make themselves and their schools a healthier place!

"Over 7,500 kids and 1,200 teachers and staff statewide set and achieved countless goals with the help of their families and communities! This is a fantastic way to get kids excited about being active and learning outdoors in the winter and living healthier lifestyles.”

The 2020 WinterKids Winter Games wee made possible by The Bingham Program, TD Bank, Subway, Backyard Farms, Emera Maine, Flexible Flyer, Garmin, Mt. Washington Observatory, Johnny’s Selected Seeds, MaineHealth Let’s Go! 5210, MMG Insurance, Sam L. Cohen Foundation, Ski Maine Association, University of New England, and Boston Museum of Science.

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