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Cars (and hearts) race at annual derby

Photos by Connie Vandermay/FOCUS The gym of St. Paul's Lutheran School in Perham was packed last Saturday with family and friends of local Cub Scouts and Girl Scouts, who all watched in nervous excitement as Pinewood Derby cars raced down a 32-foot track, vying to be first across the finish line. The annual event has been going on in Perham for more than 25 years; the Girl Scouts joined in this year with their first ever Powder Puff Derby. Among the Cub Scouts pictured is Trenton Lee, throwing his arm u...1 / 5
Scouts from the first grade Tiger Den watch anxiously while their cars race down the track.2 / 5
Bear Den scouts Quentin Frohling, Luis Briseno, Jonah Beiger and Daniel Costa react when the cars cross the finish line.3 / 5
Jackson O'Boyle shows off his car to a friend. O'Boyle won first place in the Webolo troop.4 / 5
Bear Den Leader Ryan Frohling sets up the cars at the beginning of each race.5 / 5

The excitement was high in the gym of St. Paul's Lutheran School in Perham last Saturday as local scouts participated in Pinewood Derby Car races.

This year's 'Powder Puff Derby' was the first official derby for the Girl Scouts. The Cub Scouts have been racing annually for more than 25 years.

To prepare for the races, each scout carved and decorated his or her own wooden car. There were a variety of designs, including an army tank, semi trucks, and racecars of every shape, color and size. There was even a hotdog shaped car, as well as one that looked like a turtle.

Seeing all the cars is half the fun of competing in the derby, according to a lot of the kids and parents. As fifth grade student Jordan Kain said, "It's pretty cool, 'cuz you get to see all the different cars."

With only the power of weight and gravity, cars race down a 32-foot track. Each scout had multiple opportunities to race and winners were chosen from each troop. An overall grand champion was named at the end.

Fourth grade student Garrett Costa was feeling confident as he headed over to the track to race his car.

"Cloe [his dog] liked my car, so it's good luck," Costa said. He ended up winning third place in his division.

This year was Costa's first time participating in the race, but there were many who had raced for the last four or five years.

Fifth grade student Coltan Myers, for example, enjoyed his fourth year racing this year.

It's about, "having fun, because you get to race your car after you made it," Myers said.

In his third year participating, Eric Lammers, a fifth grader, said the best part of racing, for him, is "getting trophies."

Every student received a participation medal, and the top racers received trophies. The most creative car was also chosen.

First grade Tiger Den winners were: first place, Brayden Glorvigen; second place, Owen Nelson; and third place, Logan Myers.

Second grade Wolf Den winners were: first place, Cayden Hutmacher; second place, Zachary Bachman; and third place, Haven Roth.

Third grade Bear Den winners were: first place, Quentin Frohling; second place, Aayush Thakkar; and third place, Joe Reed.

 Fourth grade Webolo I winners were: first place, Jackson O'Boyle; second place, Dakotah Watercott; and third place, Garrett Costa.

The Girl Scout derby winners were: first place, Morgan Schrupp; second place, Courtney Frohling; and third place, Emily Kain.