More than 550 students, family and community members witnessed the challenge between the Pirate Mascot and professional strongman Marshall White on May 4.
With 40 students loaded onto the school bus, the Pirate stepped forward, put on the harness, flexed his muscle and heaved. The bus didn’t budge.
Strongman Marshall cordially lauded the Pirate’s attempt and reclaimed the harness. Stepping forward, while the crowd cheered in anticipation, Marshall heaved forward and the bus moved. Marshall continued the quest and successfully pulled the bus across the length of the parking lot. The crowd went wild!
The evening began as a Family Night at the elementary school in conjunction with the Scholastic Book Fair, which had a carnival theme. Students and their families came to the school for a carnival dinner, bounce house, magician show and to shop the Book Fair.
Following the activities inside the school, everyone proceeded outside to the parking lot for more carnival fun. Cade White emceed the event, which began with seeing how many teachers could fit into Miss Tessie’s yellow VW Bug. Students loved seeing 11 teachers disappear into the small vehicle. Jacob Miskins, another local strongman, wowed the crowd by tearing phone books, rolling a frying pan and breaking a baseball bat with his hands.
The strongman events were a reward for the students at the elementary school for successfully completing the reading challenge, which dared students to read 15 minutes independently at home every evening for a month in order to accumulate 135,000 minutes of reading time. After tallying the results of the completed reading sheets on Monday, May 2, over 100 percent of the goal was reached, which meant that the strongman and his friends would exhibit their brawn at Family Night.
During the reading contest, each student earned a raffle ticket for each reading sheet they completed and 40 raffle tickets were drawn to determine which students would ride the bus that the Pirate and the Strongman would haul.
Pagosa Kiwanis Club continues to support family nights by coming to the school to serve dinner. Kiwanis members Ron Gustafson, Dan Howe, JB Smith, Nick Tallent and Roy Vega provided extraordinary kitchen assistance.
“Book Fair Carnival-Your Ticket to Read!” was open for two weeks during school hours and is the primary fund-raiser for the school, raising money for unbudgeted reading and educational improvements.