Photos | Pinewood Derby, a Scouting rite of passage

Julie Reichle

Daisy Scouts watch excitedly as the cars race by

On Saturday, Feb. 4, Piedmont Cub Scouts and Girl Scouts gathered to race their custom-designed cars in the annual Pinewood Derby at the Piedmont Community Church gymnasium.

The Pinewood Derby is a Scouting tradition that dates back to the 1950s when a parent in a Southern California Cub Scout troop was looking for an activity that fathers could do with their sons, according to Scouting Magazine. Since that time, millions of Scouts — which now include girls — have tried their hand at building carefully calibrated model cars made out of soft pinewood, decorating them in creative and colorful ways. In Piedmont, Girl Scouts also partake; their event on the same day was hosted by their Scouting peers.

In an email to the Exedra, Girl Scout parent and event organizer Beth Wiesbrock provided more detail: “Girl Scout troop #31765, a Piedmont High School 12th grade troop, hosted the Girl Scout Pinewood Derby for the fifth year. Over 100 Girl Scouts, sibling and friends competed in five race categories. Prizes were awarded to the top three finishers and a judge’s favorite at each level as well as certificates recognizing creativity, workmanship and design.

Unique and creative cars in every color raced at Saturday’s event including a bunny driven carrot, a slice of pizza car, a beaver, many other animal cars, a Hershey bar car, a pencil car, a tennis shoe car, a gold brick Lego and many race cars.”

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