OSAGE — The aquatic center at the Cedar River Complex was the scene of a flotilla of cardboard vessels late last month.
Taking into account water displacement principals, science students from Osage, Riceville and St. Ansgar created 14 boats for the first Cardboard Classic Boat Race.
CRC Wellness Manager Gayle Nelson learned about similar races while visiting Steamboat Springs, Colorado.
“I was hoping they would learn about teamwork and buoyancy,” she said.
Each team designed and constructed their boat using one roll of duct tape and cardboard, following a maximum dimension of 8 feet by 3 feet. Duct tape couldn’t be used to line the bottom of the boat, and paint and markers were prohibited.
They also made oars ranging from traditional styles with rolled poles to swim paddles designed to fit over hands and arms.
“You should have seen their faces when they realized they would have to get in the boats,” said Stacy Staudt, who teaches physical science at Osage High School.
Crews furiously paddled in attempt to span the 25-yard pool before water soaked through the cardboard.
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One vessel named after the not-so-unsinkable Titanic ultimately shared the same fate as the infamous ship.
The Thing-kers, sailed by seniors Jess Hansen and Kelsey Willert, was the winner. Senior Amelia Koster assisted in the building process.
Koster said her group did calculations on how far down the ship would sink once it had passengers.
Chrystal Berche is a correspondent for the Mitchell County Press-News, another Lee Enterprises newspaper.