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Pack 337 enjoys another Pinewood Derby

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DESIGN SPECTRUM: A wide array of colors and car designs were on display at Rossville’s Pinewood Derby on Saturday.
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LEADER OF THE PACK:Blake Heavilon, a Tiger Den member, poses with his Pack 337 first-place trophy.
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ANTICIPATION: Landon Bushman, Blake Heavilon, Ashton Cree and Cooper Dunk wait at the end of the Pinewood Derby track to see their cars cross the finish line.

By AARON KENNEDY - akennedy@ftimes.com

In a continuation of a tradition spanning generations, Rossville Cub Scout Pack 337 had its annual Pinewood Derby on Saturday inside the auxiliary gymnasium at Rossville Middle/High School.

Thirty Cub Scouts and 13 open-class racers competed in the derby. The Cub Scouts competed against each other for den trophies. The dens are Lions (Kindergarten), Tigers (1st grade), Wolves (2nd), Bears (3rd) and Webelos (4th-5th). Trophies were awarded for first, second and third place in each den, and first, second and third place among the entire scout pack.

The open class consisted of relatives who competed for first and second place as well as a best design trophy.

“It was great. I think the scouts really had a fun time,” said Heather St.Myer, a Cubmaster for Rossville Pack 337. “This was the first year that we had girls Cub Scouts so it was fun to see the cars they designed and to watch the races. I think the families also had a really good time this year.”

St.Myer and her husband, Tom, have been involved in Pack 337’s Pinewood Derby for 14 years,

“When we started, it was an old wood track with a committee member at the end of the track telling us who won,” she said. “But with fundraising, we have a new track with a timing system. So, they can see their names and times pop up on the screen, and they can see how many miles per hour their car would be going if it were a real car on a real road.”

“My wife and I love working with the kids,” Tom St.Myer said. “In fact, we open up my garage and workshop to all of the kids for two weeks leading up the the event. Not everybody has the means to make a car, so they have the liberty of coming over to my house (and working on one).

“There were a lot of races that were extremely close this year,” he added. “The separation between a third- and fourth-place finish was only three-hundredths of a second. When the axles are polished properly and the weight is exactly 5 ounces, then it comes down to the aerodynamic effect, which isn’t a lot with these cars. I like that the kids learned a little bit about physics and a little about having fun.”

According to both St.Myers, watching the kids’ excitement as they see their cars race is the highlight of the day each year.

“They get to put their cars on the rack and then they come down to the end of the track to watch their cars cross the finish line,” Heather St.Myer said. “Just the anticipation and their smiles as they wait for their cars to come down is so neat to see. And they were good sports. It was a really positive race. If they lost one race, they still had a positive attitude, and they were anxious to race again. They didn’t really get disappointed. They were just excited for their next race.”

“When we run the race, we remind everybody that the act of making a car with your parent or siblings is important here. I am not one of those guys who believes, in sports, that everybody is a winner. But, in this case, I really believe that they are all winners,” Tom St.Myer said. “We try to be as open with everybody as possible. We have such a great community that I don’t think we can ever say that we ever had a disagreement or problem.”

And, as always, there was a huge variety in car design and art.

“We had some super-creative cars,” Heather St.Myer said. “We had a hot dog car, a Minion car, and we had one shaped as a guitar. We had a Luigi car, and the scout who raced it actually dressed up as Luigi. So, it was really cute.”

Those with children in grades K-5 in the Rossville area who are interested in joining the Cub Scouts may contact Heather St. Meyer at 379-3793. 

Rossville Cub Scout Pack 337

Pinewood Derby Results

Lion Den: 1st - Sawyer Enoch, 2nd - Alex Lorton, 3rd - Finn Holsclaw

Tiger Den: 1st - Blake Heavilon, 2nd - Ambrose Cree, 3rd - Ashton Cree

Wolf Den: 1st - Jack Padgett, 2nd - Jacob Thompson, 3rd - Jolie Wolf

Bear Den: 1st - Gus Cree, 2nd - Lincoln St.Myer, 3rd - Owen Metz

Webelos Den: 1st - Haden Heavilon, 2nd - Izzy Cree, 3rd - Matt Verhey

Overall: 1st - Blake Heavilon, 2nd - Gus Cree, 3rd - Lincoln St.Myer

Best Design: 1st - Haden Heavilon, 2nd - Jack Padgett, 3rd - Matt Verhey

Open Class: 1st - Kristy Cree, 2nd - Matt Heavilon, Best Design - Ben Thompson