This gig keeps me on my toes. It keeps me on the road, and puts me in situations I certainly wouldn't be in otherwise.
I found myself in one of those situations a couple weeks ago, when I was invited to Wilton Elementary School to check out the new rock climbing wall recently installed in the elementary gym.
I had seen pictures and heard a bit about it at a recent school board meeting, therefore I was eager to visit.
I went on a day when third and fourth graders were getting their first shot at doing some rock climbing. See page 1 for pictures. It was surprising how quickly most took to it. Before we knew it, kids were scaling the walls, with the first instructions from physical education teacher Jake Souhrada to climb only about half way up, and then move laterally from left to right before climbing back down.
According to my estimation, I'd say the two walls are about 10-12 feet tall. They were made possible thanks to a roughly $8,000 donation from the Townsend Foundation.
Anyone who avidly reads this publication knows that the Townsend Foundation has its stamp on a lot of things at Wilton schools. How wonderful it has been to see an organization give so much in such a short amount of time to the education of Wilton students.
I'm constantly left thinking, "If only I could have had that when I was in school," every time I step foot in the new commons, the indoor practice facility, any classroom, etc. the list goes on. Kudos to the family and friends of the late Herb Townsend who are on the board of the organization helping to fund several wonderful projects in Wilton. It doesn't stop at the schools, but they certainly are the biggest benefactor.
When the kids left the joys of gym class and went back to the classroom, I took my turn on the wall. Souhrada took a picture or two of me as I climbed.
Fortunately, my height allowed me to reach the top after a few vertical steps, but it was quite fun. I'm definitely not 12 anymore, and I miscalculated how far the drop back down to the mat was, but I got up and down successfully.
The mats go against the walls when they are not in use, and drop down to the ground when climbing is occurring.
Souhrada has students climb every Wednesday. I look forward to another invite.
Football Contest halfway mark—We've reached week 6 of the annual Advocate News Football Contest. See the next page for this week's games.
To clear a couple things up about the rules of the contest: Only this year's green forms are accepted, and they are only available at participating sponsors.
Sadly, Casey's chose not to partake this year. This has been a struggle, as most people that played with outside forms went to both the Wilton and Durant Casey's locations to get their entries. We've added some new sponsors this year, including The Wilton Cafe and Arty's, and the Durant Hub, which are both busy daily. My guess is this is where most are getting forms, although there are several more loyal sponsors that would love to give you an entry form. Get out and see them today!
And remember, you can always cut a form out of the weekly ad in the paper. We have a tight-knit group of "regulars" who play the contest each week. Yet I'm calling for new blood. I'd like to see even more participants each week. It takes just a few minutes of your time, and you have a great chance at cash prizes!
Play today! Entries are due to our office by 5 p.m. on Fridays, There are six weeks to go.