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EASD wins big at Destination ImagiNation state competition

Apr 30th, 2014 | By | Category: Front Page, News

April 30, 2014— Two teams of students from Elizabethtown Area High School won first place in Pennsylvania Destination ImaginNation tournament and qualified to advance to the global finals to be held in Knoxville, TN later this spring. The teams will now compete against thousands of students from 46 states and 24 countries in the problem-solving event.

Destination ImagiNation is the largest creative problem-solving organization in the world. Participants solve various challenges using technical, theatrical, structural, improvisational or scientific skills. It is designed to develop problem solving skills, teamwork and creative thinking skills.

A high school team of Kaitlyn Babinchak, Kyra Buetner, James Fuglstad, Solomon Heisey, Nicole Hetrick, Lukas Schaffer and Kathryn Shenk competed it the scientific challenge. Their task was to explore an extreme environment, design and create extreme gear and then present a skit on how to use that gear to survive the environment.

The high school team of Genevieve Huff, Samual Aungst, Emily Reiner, Robert Corbin, Morgan GIzzi, John Hernley, Craig Miller and Abigail Stump competed in the structure challenge at the secondary level. Not only did they win, they were recognized with a special “Spirit of DI” award for the innovation and excellence of a DI “periodic table of elements” that they designed and incorporated in their performance.

Also taking part in the state competition was the middle school team of Najely Nelson, Aalijah Nelson, Jared Alvarez, Andrew Telenko and Zachary Thompson. The team competed in the structural challenge category and placed first. They had to design and build the lightest structure possible that would support the greatest amount of weight and then design a skit around it.

To prepare for the competition, the teams are working on refining and tweaking their central challenges in preparation for the global competition.

The team is also fund raising to cover the costs of their trip to Tennessee. The teams have partnered with Hoss’s Steak and Sea House to hold a benefit night on May 6. Visit the local Hoss’s in Elizabethtown and a portion of the proceeds will help the teams attend the Global finals when the Hoss’s card is presented at the time of purchase (The E-town Hoss’s Card can be found on the district website at Please print the form and take it to Hoss’s May 6 to have upwards of 25% of your check donated to the teams. A benefit night will also be held at Rita’s on May 14 from 6:30-8:30 p.m.

For questions about the Destination ImagiNation program and general support, contact Mike Sernoffsky by email at and/or visit the DI website at

Top Photo caption: Pictured (L-R) First row- Christina Shenk (team manager). Second row- James Fuglstad, Solomon Heisey, Kathryn Shenk, Kyra Buetner, Lukas Schaffer, Nicole Hetrick and Kaitlyn Babinchak

Lower Photo caption: Pictured (L-R) First row- Samual Aungst, Colleen Reiner (team manager), Morgan Gizzi. Second row- John Hernley, Genevieve Huff, Emily Reiner, Abigail Stump, Robert Corbin, (Not pictured-Craig Miller)

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