The Texarkana Gazette

Opportunities Inc. holds Pinewood Derby


TEXARKANA, Texas — Clients at a local nonprofit organization got to design and race custom pinewood derby cars Friday for a friendly competition.

Opportunities Inc. has held the annual Pinewood Derby for five consecutive years.

Zoe Nakashian, director of adult works, said the derby started as a way for the clients to earn the engineering merit badge by studying kinetic energy.

“Since then we’ve carried on since everyone’s enjoyed it so much,” Nakashian said.

Client Lynley Copeland painted her car fiery red, hammered in lime green wheels and attached a weight to provide more speed to her vehicle.

“It’s fun,” Copeland said. “I did this last year. I was runner-up, second place.”

Copeland said she hoped she would win this year.

Ken Lamon, director of business enterprise and facilities, jokingly encouraged the clients to have sportsman-like behavior as they all excitedly waited for the races to begin.

The derby was in a bracket format, with four cars racing each time. Three cars were eliminated in each round until only three cars remained.

Clients and attendees of the event also partook in a People’s Choice Award competition, voting on which car they liked best. Gary Woods took the award with his Woo Pig Sooie Razorback-inspired car.

The three winners were Martha Bryan in third place, Lynley Copeland in second place and Chuck Waller in first place.