FARMINGTON - While there is almost always a spotlight pointed at the fastest runners and strongest kickers of the Regional School Unit 9 athletics department, those in a different style of competition- who hold a chainsaw or throw an axe- rarely make headlines.
The third week of May, however, will bring an opportunity for the Forestry students at Foster Career and Technical Education Center to take the stage.
"A lot of our guys and gals don't play sports, so this is really their time to shine," Forestry instructor Rodney Spiller said.
The 42 Annual Logger's State Championship, hosted this year on the Mt. Blue Campus on May 17 and 18, will bring 80 students from across the state together to compete in a variety of woods-related sports. In addition to being tested on their knowledge of chainsaw use and tree identification, a combination of pulling, throwing, slicing and stacking will make up the categories of games including the axe throw, the cookie cut, the skidder competition, the precision bucking and, a favorite, the tug of war.
"I like to feed my kids a lot. Gotta fatten em' up for the tug of war," Spiller joked.
The Forestry students, mostly first years, said they are prepared for the competition- only some minor nerves about not knowing what to expect. FCTEC students have always done well at the event, and Spiller said he expects no different this year.
As hosts of the event, FCTEC is also responsible for feeding the teams- four meals during their two-day stay. Spiller said they are actively seeking sponsors and volunteers to help make that happen. The event is not a school-funded one, so the class is on its own to raise the money.
In addition to sponsors, Spiller said anyone who is interested can in being a vendor at the event should get in touch with him. This year the meet will include an equipment demonstrations by Cianbro where students can interact with the machines and ask questions from the professionals. Spiller said anyone with ideas of demonstrations, booths or other interactive additions are welcome.
Next: Chainsaw Art