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2009 World Finals

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OMER's Award Winners
The OMER's Award is given to teams and individuals for showing Odyssey spirit. This includes teams and team members, or anyone involved with World Finals. It can be someone who showed some type of artistic talent, good sportmanship, teamwork, or even for going beyond expectations to help others. An OMER's Award is given to anyone who serves as an outstanding example of Odyssey spirit through their words or actons.

Carolina Perez
Richmond Hill, Georgia
Problem 2 Teach Yer Creature Division III
The judges were tremendously impressed by this team member's amazing artistic talent, which was on display everywhere in the team's long term solution. As beautiful as her backdrop and other paintings were, the piece that most astonished the judging team was a handcrafted harp, made from a fallen tree limb, salvaged instrument parts, ordinary hardware, scrap wood and obvious love. Not only was the harp a thing of beauty to the eye, but it had been superbly designed and crafted to produce a rich and resonant sound when played by the artist. For this exceptional demonstration of craftsmanship and musicality, the judges nominate Carolina Perez of Richmond Hill HS, Richmond Hill GA for an OMER's Award.

Savannah, Georgia
Problem 2 Teach Yer Creature Division III
This team's red, white, and black set, make-up, costumes, and props drew the audience into an atmosphere reminiscent of cirque du soliel. The mimed performance was enhanced by a team created vocal and instrumental soundtrack. This dramatic presentation integrated the mechanical creature into a performance which included a suspended big top membership sign, a collage of faces to provide a 360° audience, impeccable theatrical timing and choreography. The combination of acrobats, silt walker, fire breather, and ringmaster captivated everyone. The young team demonstrated exceptional theatrical talent.

Monterrey, Mexico
Problem 4 Shock Waves Division II
This team showed exceptional artistic skill in the creation of its Spirit of Chichen Itza costume, which represented an ancient pyramid in Mexico. Painted on canvas and worn as a poncho, the realistic image of Chichen Itza was rendered in exquisite detail, down to the 91 steps on the original pyramid. The team topped off this beautiful creation with a stunning crown constructed of peacock feathers that a team member collected from feathers shed on the family's ranch. The total effect was a graceful, gorgeous, walking work of art. This team deserves an OMer for its artistic skill.

Emily Long, Emma Timmel, Sophia Salas
Orlando, Florida
Problem 5 Superstition Division II
"The Shirts of Their Backs"
After sharing the same dormitory floor, strangers become friends and competitors, become admirers. One team from Florida and one other from Singapore practiced before each other and attended each others' performances to support and cheer the other team on. Responding to a distressed request from the Singapore team's need for a "broom" to clean glitter off of the stage at the end of their long term problem, 3 girls from the Florida team took off their sweatshirts and presented them to the team on stage. The competing team was concerned about ruining the clothing, but the girls insisted. So 3 Florida sweatshirts served as brooms and no penalty points were assessed. These three girls truly showed unselfish actions in assisting a team competing against them.

Roanoke, Virginia
Problem 3 The Lost Labor of Heracles Division I
Emily performed a one-woman show with an amazing amount of stage presence and panache. Even though it was designed with a full team in mind, Emily was able to move and manipulate all the backdrops and props herself. She also performed all the roles by herself, using different masks to portray each character, and including signing, dancing and puppetry work. She had to redesign several items including the team created creature and mechanisms for moving the sets on stage. She gave full credit to her teammates for everything they helped her create and rework. All of this was done while exhibiting confidence and maturity beyond her years. We are thrilled that Emily chose to bring her solution to World Finals.

Manton, Michigan
Problem 3 The Lost Labor of Heracles Division III
When this team heard that there was a division 1 team with only one member able to come to World Finals, they were quick to offer assistance with moving props or anything else they could do. They watched the one-woman show and provided an enthusiastic cheering section, and stayed afterward to help her clean up. This team demonstrated the cooperative spirit of true OMERs.

Nathaniel Stewart
Columbia, South Carolina
Creativity Festival Booth Operator
Nathaniel Stewart was energetic, enthusiastic, and the star of the Creativity Festival. Among the dozens of booth workers this year - and the hundreds over the years - Mr. Stewart glowed like no other. His enthusiasm drew a crowd of excited OMers who could not wait to take a turn at South Carolina's booth. His outstanding performance must be seen to believe. He helped create the environment that the Creativity Festival was developed to have.

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