2016 Arts & Leisure Division

First Place Winner Arts & Leisure (awarded $1000):

Anna Beck – Grade 8 – St. Louis, MO – Does Society have Pull?

Essay excerpt: “My artwork is a 2D diagram made to convey the message of how society tells us to stretch to its standards no matter what the cost. So many people these days are depressed, suicidal, etc. and a lot of that comes from peer pressure to fit in. I’m not saying that we should start a giant revolution or campaign to stop society, I’m saying that we should accept ourselves for who we are and not who society wants us to be. We are who we are, not who society wants us to be. This is why my artwork is called Does Society have Pull? My invention incorporates rubber bands around my person’s waist, wrists, and ankles. The rubber bands are supposed to illustrate how society pulls and stretches you to conform to its standards. The rubber bands illustrate how society says you HAVE to be this skinny, you HAVE to be this tall, or you HAVE to be this weight. The bands represent the voices of people telling that person to be “normal”.”

Runner-Up Arts & Leisure (awarded $800):

Emily Merritt – Grade 6 – Stroudsburg, PA – Compromise

Essay excerpt: “My rubber band artwork is called Compromise. Its main purpose is to demonstrate that all the countries of the world need to be more flexible and compromise if we are ever to achieve world peace. My artwork was designed to incorporate peace symbols and the world bound together with rubber bands. I painted multiple peace signs with acrylic paints in shades of blue as a background representing an ocean of peace. I then applied a flat map of the world as a template and used copper nails to outline the continents. The rubber bands were then looped from nail to nail. Compromise displays the goal that everyone needs to work together.”

Remaining Finalists Arts & Leisure (each awarded $350):

  • Sophie Brieler – Grade 8 – St. Louis, MO – Once a Tree that Grew
  • Rachel Matto – Grade 8 – Lancaster, PA – Rubber Rain
  • Travis McCrady – Grade 8 – Ravenna, OH – The Baby Teedown
  • Savannah Pallante – Grade 8 – Rootstown, OH – The Rain Cloud

2016 Science & Engineering Division

First Place Winner Science & Engineering (awarded $1000):

Andrew Pelham – Grade 8 – Brentwood, TN – The Screen Stopper

Essay excerpt: “From my seat on the bus, there is one thing I am no longer surprised to see: drivers looking down at their phones at stoplights, texting in traffic, and even scrolling on a screen while speeding down the interstate. My invention, The Screen Stopper, prevents drivers from sneaking a peak at their phones by covering the screen and requiring both hands to remove the device. The user easily stretches the device over the phone before driving. Rubber bands are a critical part of The Screen Stopper design. Although The Screen Stopper slides on easily, the rubber bands make it difficult to remove without the use of two hands. The Screen Stopper can help drivers by reducing the temptation to check the phone, while still giving emergency access and charging capability in the car. I believe that The Screen Stopper has the potential to prevent accidents and save lives.”

Runner-Up Science & Engineering (awarded $800):

Wesley Eastham – Grade 8 – Anchorage, AK – The Pokenic Mixer

Essay excerpt: “My invention is a rubber band powered drink mixer. I call it The Pokenic Mixer. This is because it uses elastic potential or stored energy, which becomes rotational kinetic energy when you release the lever. It works by winding up rubber bands and setting the knob to store the potential energy and store it into the apparatus. When it is time to change the potential energy into rotational kinetic energy, you pull the lower knob and the rubber bands twist the rod with the mixer blades and rotates them in order to mix the liquid with the powdered mix. The rubber bands provide power to the rod which turns the propeller blades. The rubber bands are the impetus that make The Pokenic Mixer work. To change the power level you can either add more rubber bands, or turn the lever more revolutions to create more stored energy.”

Remaining Finalists Science & Engineering (each awarded $350):

  • Abdullah Amir – Grade 8 – Mechanicsburg, PA – Perfect Bread Spreader
  • Bradley Kuron – Grade 6 – Rochester Hills, MI – The Sandler
  • Adam Laurio – Grade 7 – Jacksonville, NC – The Rubber Ruler
  • Jaiden Mangelluzzi – Grade 7 – Gates Mills, OH – London Bridge

CONGRATULATIONS to this year’s winners, runners-up, and finalists.

View all of the entries in our 2016 Finalist Invention Gallery

A special thank you goes out to each student that entered this year’s contest. Thank you for your hard work and for sharing your creativity with us. Stay tuned to our website and be sure to sign up for our mailing list to find out about next year’s 9th annual Rubber Band Contest!