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The 411: Youth

Robyn Reports: The Nutty Neighborhood Block Party

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August 28, 2013 | 1,663 views | Post a comment

Story By Stacy Tornio
Illustrations By Roel Wielinga

Chapter 10: The Robyn Report

The story so far: The neighborhood block party is over. Here are two stories from this weeks’ edition of The Robyn Report, detailing some of the events.

Ready ... Set ... Spit!

By Robyn Zimmerman
RZ Publishing

Sarah McIntosh loves to spit.

Yesterday, she was crowned the seed-spitting champion of the neighborhood for the fourth year in a row. She spit her seed 19 feet, 4 inches, which is a new neighborhood record.

“I had a secret move this year,” Sarah said. “My sister taught me this trick with my tongue. I pull my tongue back like a spring before I spit. It really helps the seed fly through the air.”

Sarah has been spitting watermelon seeds since she was 3 years old. It all started when she ate her first piece of watermelon.

“It was a hot summer day, and we were eating watermelon in our backyard,” Sarah says. “That’s when I bit into something hard.”

Sarah asked her parents what it was, and they told her it was a watermelon seed.

“They told me to spit it out, so I did,” Sarah said. It was no ordinary spit, though. When she spit this seed, it flew across the yard. Sarah thought it was fun, so she kept spitting the seeds. She wanted to see just how far she could make the seeds go. A year later, Sarah entered her first seed-spitting contest at her family reunion. She took third place in the kids’ division.

“After that, I knew I was born to spit,” she says.

For winning, Sarah received the neighborhood seed-spitting trophy and a huge watermelon, donated by Mr. Duncan. After the contest, she shared it with the entire neighborhood.

Sarah says four years as the neighborhood champion is good enough for her. Next year, she does not plan to compete in the contest. Instead, she will be offering free seed-spitting workshops for anyone interested.

She’s not going to give up seed-spitting altogether, though. She will still compete in the contest at the county fair, and one day, she hopes to qualify for the national contest.

“The national seed-spitting record for women is 39 feet,” Sarah says. “I’ve got a long way to go, but I’ll do it. One day I’m going to be in the Guinness Book of World Records.”

(Editor’s Note: The Robyn Report would like to thank Roxanne Roberts for help with this story. She convinced Sarah to do the interview. Sarah said it didn’t take much convincing, though. In her own words, “Roxanne makes the best chocolate chip cookies in the neighborhood.”)

Food Fight on Fisher Lane

By Robyn Zimmerman
RZ Publishing

Every day should start with spaghetti.

At least, that’s Marie Cortez’s philosophy. She was responsible for the opening ceremony at yesterday’s neighborhood block party. She wanted a unique way to get things started, so she brought out buckets of cooked spaghetti noodles.

“No one was expecting it,” Marie said. “I just started throwing the noodles out at the crowd. At first everyone was shocked, but then they started laughing and quickly joined in, too.”

Marie said it took her two weeks to cook enough noodles for the contest.

“I had bags and bags of noodles in my refrigerator,” she says. “My family was eating spaghetti every night.” Everyone at the ceremony seemed to agree that it was the perfect way to kick things off.

“I had so much fun,” Billy Jordan said. “I never thought we would have a food fight in front of the library. This was the best block party ever.”

Melanie Michaels wasn’t even planning to attend the opening ceremony, but she’s glad she did.

“It’s usually boring,” she said. “But this year was awesome. I didn’t even mind getting spaghetti in my hair.”

It was definitely a hit. Many of the neighbors have already nominated Marie to plan next year’s ceremony.

“If I do it next year, I’m going to have to think of something that no one will suspect,” she says. “Maybe it will involve chocolate pudding. Or maybe it will be peas. I guess you’ll have to wait and find out.”

(For more neighborhood happenings, go to A Hot Topics Hot Serials Story. Copyright © 2006 Stacy Tornio

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