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Elementary school hosts own Olympic games

By Shannon Ballard 8:45 PM February 6, 2014

Russia may seem a world away, but one Anchorage school is bringing the Olympic games home.

ANCHORAGE – Rogers Park Elementary School is having its own winter Olympics during the games in Sochi and Jacob Thompson’s speech is kicking off the opening ceremonies.

He’s been practicing, but is still a bit nervous.

“Hello. Welcome to the 2014 Wolf Pack Olympic opening ceremonies,” he said to a gymnasium filled with his entire school.

Each class represents a different country.

“They’re learning about their country and they’re excited to wear their country’s colors,” said gym teacher Ben Elbow. “Today is really the kick off for what’s going to happen over the next three weeks.”

Students will be competing in the school’s version of Olympic events like luge.

“I hope they see it as an opportunity to really apply themselves and to try,” Elbow said.

But the Wolf Pack Winter Games is about more than athletics; it’s about understanding the Olympic creed.

“The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win but to take part. Just as the most important thing in life is not to triumph but the struggle,” Elbow quoted.

Jacob dreams of being an Olympic hockey player and said he knows what it takes.

“A lot of commitment, all your time too,” Jacob said. “You still have to work hard in school. School is first, always.”

With the Olympic torch lit, the Wolf Pack Games have begun.

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