Holy Trinity Odyssey of the Mind team headed to state


Holy Trinity's Odyssey of the Mind team qualified for this month's state event in the Primary (grades kindergarten to second) Division. Pictured from left to right are second graders Greyson Steele, Angelica Norris, Lilliana Carter, Carrie Ann Conwell, Deklan Boyles and Zoe Colling. Not pictured is Heidi Rauscher.

Viera Voice Carl Kotala


There was no question what part of this year’s Odyssey of the Mind competition at Viera High was the favorite of Holy Trinity second-grader Deklan Boyles.

“I enjoyed being up on stage,” he said.

Well, come April 14, Boyles and six other Holy Trinity students will be back on stage — this time at the University of Central Florida — to compete at the state event.

Boyles, Angelica Norris, Greyson Steele, Lilliana Carter, Carrie Ann Conwell, Zoe Colling and Heidi Rauscher made up Holy Trinity’s Primary Division team made up of students in kindergarten through second grade.

Althhough their event is not competitive, they were recommended by the judges following their performance and were ultimately one of two teams picked out of a hat. Fourteen teams in all took part in the Primary Division, which featured a long-term project that began in October and a spontaneous problem they had just minutes to prepare for.

The theme of the long-term project was “We’re Cooking Now.”

“They had to present a cooking show,” said Duana Boyles, who served as the team’s coach. “They needed to have a chef and a special guest. The chef needed to teach the special guest a cooking lesson. They needed to have a story behind the meal.

“They needed to use balsa wood to hold a team-created bowl that was at least 6 inches in diameter. They needed to have a humorous scene and they needed to have a theme song used twice in the performance.”

The students came up with the idea to be sea creatures. The chef was a narwhal, the special guest was a tiger shark and the dish they made was a great white shark salad.

The project had a budget of less than $125 and Duana Boyles was not allowed to assist in terms of putting the project together. The students created their costumes, picked their theme song (“Under the Sea”) and made their own sets.

Boyles also coached a group of fourth and fifth graders in the Problem 3 Mockumentary division that had a theme of “Alice in Wonderland.”

That group finished second and was comprised of Donovan Boesch, Lloyd Robinson, Gianna Theodoropoulos, Violet Flores, Alina Zaidi, Elle Canlas and Olivia Durgin.

A team of third graders coached by Stephanie Rabbat finished fifth in the Problem 5 division with a theme of “A Stellar Hangout.”

That team was made up of Max Robinson, Kye Gillin, Brooke Hess, Emma Rabbat and Payton Gross.

Asked if she was looking forward to performing at the state competition, Norris said yes, because the group forgot one key ingredient in their great white shark salad.

“Yeah, we forgot the onions,” the second grader said, “so we’re going to have to work on that.” VV