Lincoln team shines in event

LYMOUTH — Twenty-three of the 65 students participating in the Five-Star Program at Lincoln Junior High joined with 11 other bus loads of kids across Michiana in the third Five-Star “Amazing Race” Saturday.
The LJH team was the overall winner at the end of the day and was named “The 2011 Amazing Race champions.”
Approximately 500 students and coaches for the various schools encompassing four counties competed.
The event simulates the television show with a similar name where competitors earn points by finding check points and clues for the next stop along the course. Challenges included: Kicking field goals at the College Football Hall of Fame; inflatable obstacle course, Ferretti Baugo Snow sledding challenge, and the giant Five Star puzzle and assembly in record time; creating a team jingle (and singing it in front of a panel of judges); and “minute to win it” challenges.
Karen Barden, LJH volunteer coach, is most proud of the team’s efforts to help provide food for needy families.
“As coaches, we are so proud of our Lincoln kids for packing 182 boxes of food in 20 minutes. We got the opportunity to serve others by volunteering at Feed the Children in Elkhart,” she said.
Also accompanying the group on Saturday was volunteer coach Geoff Payne.
Payne said, “It was a great opportunity for the kids to learn to work together as a team both as leaders and followers.”
Speaking for the LJH team members, participant Sarah Smith said, “It was one of the most fun days we’ve have ever had.”
Competitors were treated to lunch in downtown South Bend at the Marriott Hotel.
Katie Strukel, one of the regional of Five Star organizers said, “Life is like a race and it’s critical that our students are given the proper tools needed to succeed in school and life. Five Star is committed to giving students the leadership, relationships and skills to help them live to their fullest potential.”
Five Star partners adult volunteers with students in regularly scheduled events. The foundation of the program revolves around teaching excellence, integrity, responsibility and fostering service and dreams.