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Wednesday, April 13, 2011

NPSD Odyssey of the Mind Team Takes First Place at State Competition

The North Penn School District announced that three of its teams placed at the Odyssey of the Mind (OM) Pennsylvania State Competition that took place on Saturday, April 9th in Williamsport. The Penndale Odyssey of the Mind team that consists of both Penndale and Pennbrook middle school students took first place in their division at the event. Pennbrook Middle School students on the team include Robert Gaibler, Max Ives and Madison Wiernusz. The students from Penndale Middle School include Tim Bilodeau, Kevin Chen, Will Hagan and Jackson Simpson. This team is coached by Kate Early and Mark Bilodeau and will be competing at the World Finals that will be held from May 27th to May 30th at the University of Maryland. The team chose a long term problem this year called "Extreme Mousemobiles." It involved creating vehicles powered only by mousetraps, and the vehicles had to complete six different tasks. All tasks had to be completed in eight minutes or less, and had to have a team-written creative story to be performed while the vehicles were completing their assigned tasks. North Penn students Bilodeau and Simpson have been solving OM problems for seven years and have been on the same team together for six years with fellow student Gaibler. Chen and Ives have been a part of this team for two years, with Wiernusz and Hagan joining the team last year. Many of these students have held several years of OM experience before joining this team. In addition to the Penndale OM team, two Bridle Path Elementary School OM teams placed in the state competition. Bridle Path Team B, consisting of students Reanna Bull, Marta Capron, Michaela Jones, Jake Millevio, Taylor Molitierre, Brenna Ryabin and Maggie Walsh, placed fifth in the competition. They are coached by Lisa Anne Bull and Keith Jones and worked on the long term solution "Le Tour Guide". The team proved, through a tour, that when musicians die, their music lives forever. Bridle Path Team A, consisting of students Julie Kratz, Eric Nawrocki , Brennan Orth, Sabrina Palmer, Puja Samant, Vinny Shankar and Billy Wang, placed seventh in the competition. They were coached by Ed Nawrocki and Shankar Venkatraman and also worked on the long term solution of "Le Tour Guide". These students used the Pippi Longstocking character as the guide of the "P"-themed team (Plankton, Pink Panther and Popeye) as they toured China to visit the Great Wall of China, Bird's Nest Stadium and a team-created site, The Leaning Tower of Pizza. For more information, please visit, or contact North Penn Odyssey of the Mind Coordinator Amy Ryan Faga at


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