Springfield schools seek budget builders
The Springfield School Board is seeking candidates to fill two positions on the district's Budget Committee. The three-year terms begin Jan. 1. Candidates must be registered voters who live in the district and are not employed by the school district. For an application, visit the district Web site, sps.lane.edu/index.html, or call 726-3200. Applications should be sent to the Springfield School Board, c/o Garry Weber, 525 Mill St., Springfield, OR 97477. The deadline is 5 p.m. Dec. 2. Prospective candidates will be interviewed in a work session on Dec. 8 and appointed at a board meeting later that day.
Jingle Bell Run to benefit Cottage Grove schools
Community members of all ages are invited to join in a 5K run/walk on Dec. 6, an annual event that took a hiatus last year. The event is co-sponsored by the Bohemia Elementary School Parent Teacher Association and the Cottage Grove High School Key Club. Proceeds will be used for student incentives and to help fund elective teachers at Bohemia in addition to an annual Key Club convention and community service projects at the high school. The walk begins at 8 a.m. at the high school. Registration information is available at the high school, and the first 60 entrants get antlers and jingle bells. The cost is $10, or $20 for those who want a T-shirt, and there's a late fee for registering the day of the race. For information, call Julie Gardner at 942-2180 or Michele Portmann at 942-3391.
Contest open to young photographers
Kids 14 and younger are invited to enter the 2ndNatureJustforKids.com photo contest, developed by landscape photographer Franklin Way, whose aim is to get kids out into nature and away from the TV. Photos must be color and depict "something made in nature." Three winners will be selected from each of two age categories. For information or an application, visit www.2ndNatureJustforKids.com. The deadline is Dec. 31.
Student athletes sought for SAMMY Awards
Milk-drinking athletic high school seniors are invited to vie for a Scholar Athlete Milk Mustache of the Year Award, to be announced next spring. The winners - one student from each of 25 geographical regions - will receive a $7,500 scholarship, a spot in the SAMMY Hall of Fame and a trip to Disney World. They'll also be featured in a milk mustache ad that will run in USA Today, a co-sponsor of the award along with various dairy organizations. Applications and information are available at www.whymilk.com, and students must include a 75-words-or-less explanation of how milk is important to them. Other criteria include academic performance, athletic excellence, leadership skills and community service.
Camp Creek PTA earns national recognition
Camp Creek Elementary School in Springfield has been recognized by the National Parent Teacher Association with the Parent Involvement School of Excellence certification. The certification recognizes schools that uphold the highest standards in parent involvement. Camp Creek is one of 281 schools nationwide to be recognized and the first for Oregon.
For more information about the National PTA Parent Involvement Schools of Excellence certification, visit www.pta.org or call (800) 307-4782.
Youth group raises cash for cows
Six youth ministry students of the Presbyterian Church of the Siuslaw in Florence raised $5,000 to donate to the Launch an Ark program of Heifer International. The program provides animals that can supply food and income to 30 families.
The students decided last year they wanted to help hungry families in less fortunate areas of the world and selected the Heifer program.
The students are Katie Bartlett, Nicole Fetaui, Kylie McKenzie, Blair and Sam Pearson, and Amanda Pilcher. They range in age from 10 to 13.
Four local cheerleaders among top in state
Four local students qualified for the elite All-State Cheerleading Team at the Oregon Cheerleading Coaches Association All-State Competition held Nov. 15 at Springfield High School. They are Jennifer Fryback and Alyssia Howanic, both seniors from Springfield High School, who placed third and fourth, respectively, in the individual competition; Thurston High School junior Teagen Wade, who placed fifth; and Julian Saaiman, a senior at Sheldon High School and the only boy to make the team, who placed seventh.
The Springfield team also took first place in the stunt team division, with members Fryback, Howanic, senior Raechel Sinyard, junior Rachel Vaughn and sophomore Ashley Phillips.
By Kathleen Duey; illustrations by Omar Rayyan
Aladdin Paperbacks, 2001
Recommended age group: 6 to 11
Set in medieval times, "Moonsilver" is the first book in "The Unicorn's Secret" series about a young orphan girl named Heart.
She lives with Simon, a mean-spirited old man who found her five years earlier wrapped in a blanket in the woods. Heart has no memory of her family, but she is befriended and given her name by Ruth, the village apothecary.
One day, while working in the field, Heart finds a horse. The horse is limping and has a deep scar on its forehead. With Ruth's help, she nurses the mare back to health and names her Avamir, the family name Ruth gave Heart. Soon, a foal, Moonsilver, is born.
Though Simon wants to sell the horses to the knacker, Heart loves and cherishes them as family.
When an unusual horn appears on Moonsilver, Heart realizes that Moonsilver and Avamir are unicorns and that she must hide them.
Heart's struggles to save and protect the unicorns - and to find out who she is and where she came from - will keep readers turning the pages in all seven of the books in this series.
The covers of all of the books depict Heart and the unicorns in a scene from the story, and Omar Rayyan has designed beautiful borders showing the unicorns.
These covers invite readers inside, where they'll find occasional illustrations throughout.
With a fourth-grade reading level and fewer than 100 pages per book, this series fills a need for those children who are too advanced for the "I Can Read" books but aren't yet ready for longer, more difficult chapter books. At Riverbend, we call these books "In-betweeners." Children are drawn to this section of the library, and "The Unicorn's Secret" books are among the most popular.
- Susan Jewett, librarian,
Riverbend Elementary School, Springfield