MEXICO — A rousing “Happy Birthday to all students” for those with June birthdays kicked off Meroby Elementary’s final morning assembly on June 5.

Following the song, students who won bicycles by reading the most books during the schoolwide Bikes for Books program found out who the girl and boy winners from each class were. The Maine Mason’s Bethel Lodge 30 members donated the bikes for the winners and they were at the assembly to give the bikes to the children.

“We really appreciate the support (from the Masons), it was a real motivator for our students,” Principal Kim Fuller said.

Fifth-graders Ariana Belskis and Joseph Scott, fourth-graders Alyvia Theriault and Dawsyn Korhonen, third-graders Kaitlynn Scott and Grady Mack, second-graders Lillith Butterfield and Sawyer Durant, first-graders Marques Francois and Jaiden Virgin, and kindergarten students Kera Gravel and Brixton Deschaine were the students who read the most books from their class.

After the assembly, fifth-grade winner Joseph Scott said he read “tons of books,” but his favorite book was “The Bad Beginning” by Lemony Snickett and fifth-grade winner Ariana Belskis’ favorite books are the “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” series. Both students said that what they liked most about their favorite books was the funny things the characters in the books did. Belskis also read a magic book titled “The Power of Poppy Pendle.” She said the book was different from what she normally reads, but it caught her eye because of its interesting cover.

After School Chess program tournament winners fifth-grader Mainglihoung Tang and second-place winner fourth-grader Eugene Frost received their trophies from Gifted and Talented teacher Doug Barber. “Chess teaches good sportsmanship and we learn a lot of thinking strategies, and we really do (get) brain exercise, we like it for that reason too,” Barber said.

Then Girls on the Run Coach and Title 1 teacher Katie Nolette and the girls who participated in a 5K run at the Cumberland Fairgrounds earlier this month came to the front of the crowd in their pink T-shirts to show their team spirit with cheers for their efforts. “We could not be more proud of the girls and how they set a goal and they met their goal and they moved forward. We ended our 10-week season at a high and it just cannot be overstated of how proud we are of our Meroby girls,” Nolette said.

The lively assembly was completed by Children’s Librarian Susan Marshall from Rumford Public Library dressed as Dr. Disaster and retired librarian Ginny Todd dressed as Mini-Crisis. The duo told students about RPL’s summer reading program and invited them all to have free bag lunches at the library on Monday through Friday during the summer months.

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Masonic Lodge 30 of Bethel donated bicycles to a girl and a boy in grades kindergarten to six at Meroby Elementary School in Mexico. The bikes were prizes for reading the most books during the school’s Bikes for Books program. Winners, from left, are fifth-graders Ariana Belskis and Joseph Scott, fourth-graders Alyvia Theriault and Dawsyn Korhonen, third-graders Kaitlynn Scott and Grady Mack, second-graders Lillith Butterfield and Sawyer Durant, first-graders Marques Francois and Jaiden Virgin, and kindergartner Kera Gravel. Kindergartner Brixton Deschaine was absent.

Members of Girls on the Run at Meroby Elementary School in Mexico, and their coach, Katie Nolette, celebrate at a school assembly this month. The girls recently participated in a 5K at the Cumberland Fairgrounds in Cumberland.

Winners of the Meroby Elementary School after-school chess tournament are first place, fifth-grader Mainglihoung Tang, right; and second place, fourth-grader Eugene Frost.

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