Celebs to learn if they’re smarter than 5th graders

By Gary Alan Ruse….

Pictured are students during last year’s event.

Last year’s special event for fun and learning at Whispering Pines Elementary School, 18929 SW 89 Rd. in Cutler Bay, “So you think you’re smarter than a 5th grader?” is back for a second go-round with a new set of brave celebrity contestants.

Scheduled for the school’s cafetorium on Thursday, Jan. 27, at 6 p.m., this year’s cast of adults testing their mettle against the kids will be (in alphabetical order):

Horace Cox, Technical Sergeant with the United States Air Force; Dr. Lawrence S. Feldman, Miami-Dade County Public Schools vice chair; Maria Lastre, Whispering Pines Elementary fifth grade teacher; Tim Meerbott, 2010 mayoral candidate for the Town of Cutler Bay, and David Sutta, CBS 4 News reporter.

Alicia Attong Mendes, Alphabet Soup Booster Club chair and this year’s event coordinator, said the school felt compelled to bring the mock game show back again.

“This event was a huge success last year, thanks to the participation of our contestants and contributions from local businesses,” Mendes said. “More importantly, the children had a wonderful time and thoroughly enjoyed meeting local ‘celebrities.’ We hope that this year’s event will be as successful and fun for everyone.”

Admission for the show is $3, but kids under age 5 are free.

Renee Y. Espinosa, an active PTA member at the school, said that the event began last year as an idea for a fundraiser and a way of including the community.

“The production was a ‘midnight’ idea,” Espinosa said. “We felt this would be a great opportunity.”

It worked out well on every level, according to Mendes.

“Last year’s event raised over $1,000 and helped three of the school’s student committees,” Mendes said. “Those same committees are joining forces again this year in hopes of a fun-filled evening for the whole family.”

Space is limited to 350 people, but tickets will be sold at the door at 6 p.m. if available.

For more information call the school at 305-238-7382.

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