Connellsville students participating in WVU pumpkin drop
By Marilyn Forbes
Published: Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013, 6:15 p.m.
Proving that gravity does indeed work, students from all over southwestern Pennsylvania and northern West Virginia will be trying out their creations in Friday's annual “Pumpkin Drop,” sponsored yearly by the Engineering Department of West Virginia University.
Teams from Connellsville Area High School and Connellsville Junior High will make the trip to West Virginia, taking with them the creations they designed and built around pumpkins. Their intent is to drop their inventions from the 11-story engineering building, and hope that they land unbroken in the target area.
Connellsville gifted teacher Justin Guest will be taking five teams to the competition. Each of his five classes make up one team.
“Each team has anywhere from eight to 12 students,” Guest said. “They work on it together to see what they can come up with that they feel is the best way to keep the pumpkin intact.”
Students can use materials that are eco-friendly and are not permitted to use items such as liquids, glass, wood, PVC piping or Styrofoam packing peanuts.
Guest has been taking his students to the event for many years. For the first time, the project has a theme.
“One of the students suggested farm animals and I thought that it was a good idea,” Guest said. “It adds a little more fun and creativity to the project. We have a ram, a duck, a pig, a cow and a horse.”
“If they land unbroken, then they will then measure them to see who is closest to the target,” Guest said.
Guest said while the students include him in the design options they create, he is not involved with the making of the pumpkin containers.
“We talk about their ideas and what they want to do, but then I let them go at it,” Guest said.
“This is really a fun way to incorporate engineering into everyday life,” said student Cody Nicholson, 16, of Normalville. Nicholson said his team worked on their ram named Dodge for more than three weeks. “We tried some different ideas and hopefully it (the pumpkin) will survive.”
Student Hannah Surgent, 17, of Champion will be attending the pumpkin drop for the sixth time. Her team will be taking a duck that is covered in paper mache and feathers.
The teams paid a $10 entry fee. All proceeds are donated to the Ronald McDonald House.
“It's for a good cause and it's a lot of fun,” Guest said. “Everyone is so happy just if their pumpkin survives.”
Marilyn Forbes is a contributing writer.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Connellsville junior ROTC program a training ground
- Troop cuts worry vets in Fayette
- FAA pushes for upgrades to Fayette airport
- WVU students aim for billiards record to help Make-A-Wish
- Dawson council to meet tonight
- Geibel 3-sport star enjoys tapping onstage
- Brownsville Area Redevelopment Corp. chief ousted after 9 weeks
- Geibel musical director enjoys ‘group of very talented dancers’
- Masontown man sentenced in crash
- Former public defender sues Fayette County officials over firing
- Brutal attack gets Fayette County man up to 11 years in prison