Foodstruction brings familiar faces: Pac-Man, Mr. Potato Head represented at competition
By RODD CAYTON The Daily News May 10, 2014
BULLHEAD CITY — The Bullhead City Junior High gymnasium Saturday was converted into an art gallery and a temporary food warehouse.
Thirteen teams from schools, service clubs and other organizations produced sculptures as diverse as a box of crayons, Mr. Potato Head and two variations on a “Pac-Man” theme, out of nonperishable food items.
The annual Foodstruction competition was expected to bring in thousands of food items, said event organizer and BCJH social studies teacher Mike McClurg.
The beneficiaries of Foodstruction are the Colorado River Food Bank, the Bullhead City Senior Nutrition Center and Caring Hearts Food Ministry.
Between the sculpture competition and related February and May food drives at the Bullhead City Walmart store, McClurg said, more than 14,000 items will have been collected, surpassing all prior years.
He said the event is important because local food pantries tend to run low during the spring and summer months, when hunger is not on donors’ minds as much as during the holidays.
A number of McClurg’s students volunteered their time during the food drives and the competition.
Seventh-grader Trinity Riley said she enjoyed being able to help meet a community need as well as getting to see the sculptures. Her favorites were Diamondback Elementary School’s “Pac-Man” setup and Mr. Potato Head, built by a team from Walmart.
Each of those won acclaim from the judging panel as well — Walmart was named best-engineered entry, while Diamondback took funniest and was recognized for contributing the most items (1,780).
The Aquarius Casino Resort’s slot-machine sculpture was named most unique.
Darryl Dauenhauer of the CRFB, Vice Mayor Kathy Bruck and Pete Peterson were the judges.
They chose Desert Valley Elementary’s kiddie-pool themed structure for the Youth Spirit Award. The People’s Choice Award, voted on by visitors whose admission was a suggested donation of two food items, went to the BHC Junior High Marauders, who created a castle.
McClurg, who introduced the event to the Tri-state area, is moving to Virginia after this school year, but Foodstruction will live on: the Mohave High School Key Club will take it over for 2015.
McClurg said Foodstruction is a great team building exercise and is good for getting young people involved in community service.
“Volunteering doesn’t have to be drudgery,” he said. “(Foodstruction) is a lot of work, but it’s fun.”
Seventh-grader Maria Orozco is already planning to be a part of next year’s event.
“It was pretty cool this year,” she said.”