High school competes in Solar Cup

Laguna Beach High School placed 21st out of 39 Southern California schools in the 11th annual Solar Cup organized by the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California.

This the second time Laguna Beach High has fielded a team in the event, held May 17 through 19 at Lake Skinner in the Temecula Valley, according to a news release.

Teams from Orange, Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego and Ventura counties competed in a series of qualifying events and endurance races before the final sprint race.

Laguna Beach High students built, equipped and raced a 16-foot, single-seat canoe powered by the sun and batteries.

This year, the 12-student club used an aluminum motor mount instead of wood to help lesson the canoe's weight.

"The program exposes students to experiences that they couldn't necessarily get in a classroom setting," Laguna Beach County Water District General Manager Renae Hinchey said in the release.

The water district sponsored Laguna Beach High's team.

"It opens their minds, gives them hands-on problem-solving opportunities, fosters good teamwork and sportsmanship, and provides an excellent multi-disciplined learning experience," Hinchey said.

The Solar Cup allows students to apply skills in math, physics, engineering and communications, while learning about Southern California's water resources, resource management and conservation, according to the Metropolitan Water District website.

"This project has been a labor of love," Solar club faculty advisor Jennifer Merritt said in the release. "It has definitely been time consuming and a bit stressful at times, but it is fun to see the students engaged in hands-on learning. The look on their face when they ride in the boat is priceless."


Festival gives $5000 for sheet music

The Festival of Arts Foundation provided $5,000 for instruments and sheet music for Laguna Beach High School's instrumental music program this year.

The jazz band also used the money — available from a grant — to record a CD.

—Bryce Alderton

Twitter: @AldertonBryce

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