Youngsters show their ‘Pride in Cumberland’

Youngsters show their ‘Pride in Cumberland’

CUMBERLAND – There was lots of excitement in the town’s elementary and middle schools earlier this month, as Mayor Bill Murray made the rounds to award prizes in his Pride in Cumberland competition.

Elementary school students had been challenged to show off what’s best about Cumberland in a competition between students in the same grade levels across town.

They were asked to create tiles or drawings that commemorated the slogan “Pride in Cumberland.”

Renditions were detailed pictures of Cumberland landmarks including Phantom Farms, the Monastery, the Ice Cream Machine and even Route 122.

Most were taped or pasted together into a large banner, but one teacher transferred the drawings to cloth and crafted a quilt from them.

Middle-schoolers, meanwhile, were asked to submit essays about their hometown highlights.

Teachers in all schools chose the semi-finalists, then a committee of four – Darleen Wood of Navigant; Linda Dwyer, former teacher; Celeste Dyer, library director; and Heather Borges, administrative assistant to the mayor – made the final selections.

Gift certificates to the Ice Cream Machine went to each student of a winning class.

Teachers of winning classes received gift cards to purchase school supplies at the Lake Shore Learning Center.

Prizes were funded by sponsors Navigant Credit Union, Pawtucket Credit Union and The Valley Breeze.

Teachers of the elementary winners from K-1 were: Gold, Cumberland Hill, Lea Dau; silver, Ashton, Charlene Mitchell; bronze, Community, Susan Miller.

For grades 2 and 3: Gold, Ashton, Jillian Pullano; silver, Cumberland Hill, Linda Rosaco; bronze, B.F. Norton, Renee Larue.

For grades 4 and 5: Gold, Ashton, Lisa Marie Moreau; silver, Community, Dianne Boisvert/BetsyYost; bronze, Garvin, Susan Bleecker.

Gold essay winners of Fuji cameras are students Estella Del Moro, North Cumberland Middle School, grade 6; Allison Grieve, McCourt Middle School, grade 7; Cayla Ballou, grade 8, North Cumberland Middle.

Silver essay winners of iHome speakers are Eric Batalon, North Cumberland, grade 6; Nicolette Ducharme, McCourt, grade 7; Aiden Turner, North Cumberland, grade 8.

Bronze winners of a $30 certificate to CHOPS are: Jolinada Zhang, McCourt, grade 6; Madison Durkin, McCourt, grade 7; Cassidy Travers, North Cumberland, grade 8.

Nearly every essay winner mentioned Cumberlandfest – and, in fact, winners will be on display this summer at Cumberlandfest – and nearly all talked about their neighborhoods, outings to Phantom Farms and the Monastery and a general sense of well-being in the town.

Eighth-grade gold winner Cayla Ballou wrote that Cumberland’s “three most influential elements are exquisite appearance, historical background and caring community of our comfy little town.”

The 8th-grade silver winner Aiden Turner mentioned the rock Cumberlandite, the nation’s oldest war monument “deep inside the woods reminds everyone of the tragedy now called Nine Men’s Misery,” and the chain of 726 Cumberland Farms convenience stores that were started by Cumberland farmers Vasilios and Aphrodite Haseotes.

Eighth-grade bronze winner Cassidy Travers noted the nice neighborhoods, beautiful and clean parks and the “fun friend and family events that the town offers.”

Sixth-grader Joinada Zhang of McCourt noted his family opened a Chinese restaurant in Cumberland, a town that “shows respect to everyone.”

He added, “I am happy to live in a town where (my family) feel(s) safe and happy.”