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Two local Destination Imagination teams headed to global competition

Destination Imagination teams from Cortez and Dolores to travel to Tennessee

Two local Destination Imagination teams are traveling to Knoxville, Tennessee, for the Global competition on May 23.

The competition includes 15 countries, 10 events and 17,000 attendees at the University of Tennessee.

Dolores Middle School’s team is the first middle school team from the district to go.

The team consists of six seventh-graders led by team manager Michelle Cochrane.

“Destination Imagination is an extracurricular after school activity in which a team of at most, seven, gets together to do one of many challenges that include science, technology engineering and fine arts,” Joseph Cochrane said. “We chose scientific, and the scientific challenge this year was that we had to create an attraction in an unlikely location.”

The team has created a skit about balancing fun and work. They practice about three times a week.

“Our story is about two worlds in another galaxy,” Taylor LaRose said. “We have to use three scientific concepts into our carousel or attraction, and so we chose Newton’s first law of energy, and we also used leverage.”

The team made a set based on these concepts. According to Hazel Smith, the team made a moving set using gear designs from a Leonardo Da Vinci design.

Members agreed they were looking forward to the road trip, the competition and seeing the international competition.

The team is raising funds through a GoFundMe account and local businesses.

“We are just really grateful for the great support in the community,” Michelle Cochrane said.

The team will host a silent auction at the Dolores River Campground, where the team will perform live music on May 15 from 5:30-8 p.m.

The Montezuma-Cortez High School team placed second at the state competition in Denver on April 7.

“We started our sixth- grade year, and it was fun, but we didn’t do very well,” freshman Jadon Cruzan said. “You have to think outside the box because that is the way that DI works.”

According to managers Deanna Bagge and Kim Martin, the boys practice 20 to 30 hours a week.

“These guys have worked, they have pretty much done it on their own this year,” Martin said. “They have planned when they are going to get together, they executed their plans, they made sure that they had parents that could go buy them supplies, they were really good about getting it done.”

The M-CHS team will perform a skit with a moving set.

“Originally, we had these props that were powered by RC cars that we would rotate around, but we decided to completely change that up and paint onto cloth and have motors rotate a dowel that will pull up a cloth and reveal another change to our set,” Cruzan said.

The competitions also involve an activity called the “instant challenge,” an event the team placed last in regionals and state in 2017 and first at both competitions this year.

Martin said these challenges show off their creative thinking and teamwork.

“Instant challenges are timed challenges like 5 to 10 minutes,” freshman John Whyte said. “You get supplies like toothpicks and paper cups and a golf ball and other stuff, and you have to make something work. So you have to build a tower or a strong bridge holding weight, and we do not know anything about the challenge until right before you have to complete it.”

The M-CHS team also is seeking fundraising help from businesses.

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