Germantown school group needs $$$ to get to finals in Iowa

April 20, 2018


After competing in the New York State competition in Binghamton, NY on April 7th, Germantown PTSA’s Odyssey of the Mind division II team is advancing to participate in the Odyssey World Finals next month in Ames, Iowa.

The team of 7th and 8th graders created a mockumentary of Alice in Wonderland, using the croquet match from the classic novel to discuss our use of, and addiction to, social media through behind-the-scenes encounters, interviews, and ingenious Wonderland sets and costumes.

Odyssey of the Mind is an international competition that teaches students how to develop creative problem-solving skills, while having fun in the process. By tapping into their creativity and discovering imaginative paths to cooperative solutions, students learn valuable skills that will provide them with the ability to solve problems for a lifetime.

Students who participate build their own props, write their own scripts, and create their own costumes to realize their ideas. Adult volunteers who coach and coordinate the program are only allowed to facilitate, not direct or otherwise contribute. It’s an exciting, empowering experience for the children in Germantown Central School, and it’s open to all students in both the upper and lower schools, free of charge and without any entry barrier.

We’ve had remarkable success over the past five years. Once again in 2018, we’ve been amazed at the creative work of the five teams and 33 students that competed. For the fifth straight year Germantown did well enough in the regional contest to send two teams to the state competition, and, for the third year, one of those teams qualified for the World Finals.

All this from a public school of 600 students. This is an incredible accomplishment, but it comes as a financial burden to the families of our seven World Finalists. The prop transport costs and personal travel expenses are substantial, given that half the country lies between Germantown and Ames, Iowa.

It costs $5,255 for registration and on-campus food and lodging for the team (exclusive of travel to the tournament). To offset expenses, team members will continue to reach out to family, friends, and their community through targeted fundraisers. We’ve approached private foundations, the Germantown School Board, the Germantown Booster Club, and are approaching the Germantown Friends of the Arts for assistance.

A GoFundMe campaign has been established at

A community car wash is planned for May 19th at Palatine Park in Germantown, and a T-shirt sale is being held online at

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