Etcetera - 05/03/10

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Laurence Brennan, a fifth-grader at Oak Point Intermediate School in Eden Prairie, Minn., is on a mission. He adopted Washington state as a class project. He's hoping to receive a postcards only from as many people as possible (no packages or letters because of safety precautions). He hopes the missives will include a descriptions of interesting or special details about our state. Send postcards to Laurence at the school, 13400 Staring Lake Parkway, Eden Prairie, MN 55347-1800.

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An essay Katelyn Rickords composed for the Narcissa Prentiss Chapter National Society, Daughters of the American Revolution, won at the local and state levels, said DAR member Sarita McCaw. Katelyn's work has been forwarded to the organization's western regional contest.

DAR is dedicated to the preservation of American history, the promotion of patriotism and securing America's future through better educational opportunities, Sarita said.

The daughter of Wayne and Leanne Rickords of College Place, Katelyn won at the eighth-grade level. She will attend the state DAR conference in Tacoma this month to receive her medal and certificate, Sarita said.

Katelyn and essayists nationwide wrote on the completion of the transcontinental railroad and the driving of the golden spike at Promontory Summit, Utah, on May 10, 1869.

Her essay started, "Swing and ...miss? The crowd burst into laughter. The President of the Central Pacific Railroad Company, Leland Stanford, had taken up the hammer to drive in the last spike, the golden spike which was to finish the Transcontinental Railroad at last. He took aim and completely missed, hitting the rails to the side. The Vice president of the Union Pacific Railroad Company, Thomas Durant, went to do the honors instead, but missed too. Finally, a regular worker was called up and drove in the spike, and the people cheered."

Winners at the regional level will be announced in May, and winners of the national contest will be announced from national DAR headquarters in Washington, D.C., in June, prior to the national conference in July.

Locally, medals were presented to Jimmy Selby, fifth-grade winner, son of Melodie Selby, and Elizabeth Rogers, sixth-grade winner, daughter of Kim Rogers, at Rogers School in April in the classroom of teacher LoraLee Thomas. Everyone received certificates. Medals will be presented to Brennan Adams, seventh-grade winner, son of Jeff and Andrea Adams and to Katelyn; and certificates to all participants from the seventh and eighth grade writers at the end-of-school program for Sager School with the assistance of their teacher, Ted Knauft.

Narcissa Prentiss officers include Chris Crowder, regent; Sarita, vice regent; Ann Bachtold, secretary; Kathy Munns, treasurer; and Marcie Davis of Connell, registrar.

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