Services Family John R. Borchert



1997-98 Odyssey of the Mind Teams

High School Team

The High School team selected a problem called "Pageant Wagon"

The team's problem was to design and build a Tow Vehicle and a Pageant Wagon, and to present a Festive Performance that included a Grand Finale. The Tow Vehicle had to be powered and driven by a team member(s) and had to tow or push the Pageant Wagon around a course. The Tow Vehicle and the Pageant Wagon had to carry all of the team's props. The Pageant Wagon had to be used as part of the set for the Performance.

During the performance, the Tow Vehicle had to travel the course and show off to attract interest in the Pageant Wagon. In addition, the Pageant Wagon had to accomplish a team-created task that will be part of the Grand Finale.

The team's style synopsis:

The Communist Soviet Union, Nazi Germany, the Roman Empire: In their heyday, these three powers threatened the freedom of all humanity. But now a new, different power is poised to take control of the planet. No, I am not referring to the satanic influence of rock and roll music. This power is far more subtle, far more insidious. This power has even invaded the sanctity of the very homes in which we live. I am referring to the mounting power and influence of the vegetable kingdom. Yes, the plants of the world, under the leadership of the infamous "stemme fatale", Tiger Lily, and her right hand plant, Sgt. Saguaro, are laying their plans for world conquest. Do not delude yourself into complacency with the notion that plants are harmless simply because they cannot move. In recent years, in secret underground laboratories, teams of plant engineers have been working to develop a fiendishly ingenious system of transportation involving creeping vines.
Time is running out if we are to save our civilization! This threat must be stopped at any cost. I urge you to stop recycling paper, support legislation to outlaw the production and sale of fertilizer, and promote deforestation around the world! Act now, or the destruction of the human race will become a foregone inevitability!

This year the High School Team generated a surprising amount of poetic literature. Below are a song which they used in their skit, and several Haiku about their theme.

Our sharp witted cactus was true and brave,
The most macho of pansies, the day she saved
The dogwood proved she's no man's best friend
And brought the human race to an end.

Tiger lily, our stemme fatale
We'll make our seedlings remember
And then, of course, there's the best of all
Our non-performing team members!

Two Haiku Entitled, Affliction of Humanity

Cities Crumbling
Misfortune for All Mankind
Nature shall Prevail

Peaceful Vegetables
Serene but Unforgiving
Seize from us the World

(Shake tambourine here [optional])

The High School Team was awarded a Renatra Fusca Creativity award at regionals. According to the judges "The Inchworm Motion Vehicle was risky, creative, and audacious. On top of that it worked! The team's costuming, humor, engineering of auxiliary devices and theme just added icing to the cake."


Elementary School Team

The elementary team chose a problem called "Morph Magic."

The team's problem was to create and present a performance that included a character who undergoes a morph from a human to an animal. While in animal form the character had to (1) find some plight of an animal that it will help, or (2) learn something to help it solve a human plight. The performance had to also include humor and a team made device that will morph from its original appearance into something else. Their style paragraph read as follows:

An evil corporation with a plan that could destroy the future, two young children that wish they were never involved, a mad scientist that knows something that nobody else does, and a virus that's deadly in it's own way. Our story is about one girl that could save the world from another Richard Nixon. One boy who is slowly turning into him. One Doctor who might have an answer, and one mad corporation with evil in mind. Ladies and gentlemen, what you are about to witness is not the common cold; it's the NIXON VIRUS! .


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