Creativity spreads at Destination Imagination’s regional tournament

Nearly 100 teams participated in the North Metro Destination Imagination regional tournament at Blaine High School March 23.

Madison Elementary School’s team Destination Imagination Dominators during its competition.Photo courtesy of Anoka-Hennepin School District
Madison Elementary School’s team Destination Imagination Dominators during its competition.Photo courtesy of Anoka-Hennepin School District

The top two teams in each category advance to the state tournament, scheduled for April 20 at Champlin Park High School. However, one third-place team, Crooked Lake’s Rockin’ DI Royals, will compete at state because of the high number of teams participating in the “In Disguise” challenge.

In total, 12 of Anoka-Hennepin’s 35 teams competing in the regional tournament advanced to the state tournament.

They are Blaine High School’s Diys; Champlin-­Brooklyn Park Academy’s The Lightning Huskies; Coon Rapids High School’s Awesome in Disguise; Crooked Lake Elementary’s The Rockin’ DI Royals; Franklin Elementary’s Aquadrydic Hero; Johnsville Elementary’s Seven Girls in Disguise, The Elite Prototypes, Neon Zebra Apocalypse and The Rosemary Chickens; Lincoln Elementary School for the Arts’ Project Outreach; Roosevelt Middle School’s One Two, Three….Action!; and the District 11 high school team, Me, Myself, I and That Guy.

Competition in the North Metro tournament had each team working on a complex challenge to develop an innovative, creative solution.

Teams were rated on various components for each challenge.

In the theatrical challenge called “In Disguise,” students created a story about a concealing character.

Jackson Middle School’s The Classicals created a skit about a robot that went on a cruise ship and tried to take over.

During the competition they were required to use non-­verbal forms of communication and present two mask props.

“I was nervous, but it was really fun,” said student Leo Lee.

The Classicals comprised students Dzidedi Azumah, Bailey Hanson, Leo Lee, Hannah Reynolds and Mary Vu, as well as parent coach Cheryl Reynolds.

They earned second place at the middle school level of this competition.

In the architectural challenge called “Twist-­O-­Rama,” students built a structure made entirely of materials (aluminum foil, copper, newsprint, etc.) that could withstand a large amount of weight.

While their invention was being tested, another portion of the team shared a story with a surprise.

Madison Elementary School’s Destination Imagination Dominators team created a skit about a mad scientist who tricked a girl into trying his time machine.

“It’s definitely harder in front of a group, because everyone saw me with this weird face paint on,” said student Ama Anohene.

Destination Imagination Dominators included students Ama Anohene, Talon Bauman, Sam Burnes, Lauren Christenson, Ashley Piche, Gavin Spartz and Noah Sperbeck as well as coach Andrea Mihalow, academic support teacher at Madison Elementary.

They earned sixth place at the elementary level of this competition.

Students from both teams had suggestions for students thinking about getting involved.

“They should just go with their gut and do it, because if you try you will succeed,” said Madison Elementary student Sam Burnes.

“The key is just to have fun, to try new things and be creative,” said Jackson Middle School student Bailey Hanson.

Destination Imagination is an international tournament. About 125,000 students and 38,000 volunteers have participated in the program since 1999.

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