High School cardboard boat competition in Klamath Falls

Klamath Falls, Ore. – Upper Klamath Lake served as an engineering and physics classroom for high school students in a cardboard boat competition Monday.

The races were held at the Moore Park Marina.

‘Black Pearl’ boat Captain Mia Groff says the rules are simple.  “We got three materials. We got cardboard, duct tape, and plastic sheeting to use on our boats, and whoever’s the fastest wins.”

The competition included teams from Klamath Union, Mazama, Henley, and Lost River High Schools.

“We just wanted to show that as a school, we’re improving in our science department,” Lost River’s Daniel Valadez explained. “And so we’re going for a grade too, so this is why we are racing this boat.”

“We put in a lot of effort into ours,” Henley’s Vanessa Ramirez said. “We wanted a good grade, and so the effort was there.”

Captain Groff says a little over-construction doesn’t hurt. “We used some really strong cardboard.  Sears is actually the one we have to thank for that – and then we covered it all in duct tape, and then in plastic, and then in duct tape again.”

The cardboard boat competition has been an end of the year school tradition in Klamath Falls for the past 16 years.

KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970's.  He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.Lyle's job history is quite colorful. 

He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand.  A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90's as a news writer and commercial producer.  In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience.

"The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain.  Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story".

When he's not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.

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