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Four years ago, Talbert Middle School science teacher John Wood was among the contestants in the Mr. Fountain Valley contest, a fun, tongue-in-cheek event in which a group of Fountain Valley guys got on stage and did a lot of crazy things – all for charity.
The goal of the pageant was to crown Mr. Fountain Valley. But each contestant also helped raise funds for a cause that is near and dear to their hearts.
Wood, the 2012 Fountain Valley School District Teacher of the Year and the Orange County Teacher of the Year in 2013, raised money for his school’s STEM academy, an advanced program that emphasizes science, technology, engineering and math skills.
John Wood didn’t win the pageant – John Etheridge, owner of Seashore Pest Control, did – but Wood certainly went above and beyond to further his cause.
Wood has ventured to Antarctica and Alaska as part of Polar/TREC, an organization funded by the National Science Foundation that matches educators with research groups that are exploring issues in the Arctic and Antarctic. He also has been a presenter at the International Polar Year Conference in Montreal.
Wood’s interest in the importance of the Earth’s poles is one of the big reasons the Fountain Valley School District has been holding its annual Polar Day.
It’s an event students and parents in the district have certainly warmed up to.
This year’s fourth annual Polar Day is set for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 3 at Gisler Elementary School. School district officials bill Polar Day as “a fun day of learning filled with arts and crafts, STEM and engineering projects.”
Adding to the fun will be cookie decorating, guest speakers, photo booths, food trucks and a pickup game of street hockey with the Anaheim Ducks.
Gisler School is at 18720 Las Flores St. The event is free.
Also, mark your calendars:
Fountain Valley will celebrate the grand reopening of the playground at Harper Park with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and a movie in the park on Friday, Nov. 2.
The city’s Public Works Department and Community Services Department will unveil the park’s newly designed Biba Playground. There are multiple apps parents can use to enable children to play fun, interactive games while at the park.
The ribbon-cutting is set for 5:15 p.m., followed by the movie “Coco” at 5:45 p.m. Kids are invited to dress up in costume, and the first 300 people will receive free hot dogs. Popcorn and snow cones also will be available.
Harper Park is at 8675 Bluebird Ave. More information: 714-839-8611.
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