WA wins Golden Wrench

BAR HARBOR — In addition to performances of one-act plays, the Maine Drama Festival regional competition includes a special event designed to showcase the students’ skills in technical theater.

Of seven schools participating in the Tech Olympics Saturday afternoon, Washington Academy took this year’s Golden Wrench for combined high scores in a relay race and tape measure competition, their first win since 2013. The second-place Silver Screwdriver went to a very enthusiastic crew from Hampden Academy.

“Sumner and MDI had been passing the wrench back and forth for a long time before we came up with these trophies,” said former MDI tech director Mark Smith, who helped create the event with Peter Miller. MDI won the Golden Wrench in 2014 and 2015.

The first part of the competition is a four-person relay race. The relay team for MDI was Piper Charron, Mason Gurtler, Ben Hagle and Max Cornman. The events are wooden box frame construction, light focusing, sound cable coiling and knot tying.

Cornman was so excited for the beginning of his leg of the relay that he tripped and fell on his way up the steps to the stage. He hopped right back up and performed the knot-tying perfectly.

Students in the audience cheered on their classmates in the relay race, even reprising some of the school cheers often heard at sports events. For MDI, this means the “We’ve got that beat” and “Boogaloo” cheers.

Spectators fell quiet for the final event, a competition to see how high up in the air a student can extend a measuring tape before it bends and falls over. Cornman represented MDI again in this event, beating out other tape measure ninjas with a score of more than 150 inches, but it was not enough to overcome MDI’s large deficit from the relay.


Liz Graves

Liz Graves

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Former Islander reporter and editor Liz Graves grew up in California and came to Maine as a schooner sailor.

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