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April 16, 2013 > Students, start your engines

Students, start your engines

When this contest begins on Saturday, April 20, contestants will be looking for a hot time or at least as much sunshine as possible. The 2013 Junior Solar Sprint Car competition, sponsored by Alsion Montessori, Dominican Sisters of the Queen of the Holy Rosary and Mission San Jose Chamber of Commerce is an indicator that solar-powered vehicles have steadily moved from the realm of science fiction to reality and, who knows, may become commonplace on roads of the future.

Naysayers may be wise to review historical events, especially the first 12-second powered flight of 120 feet by Orville Wright in 1903 at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, the precursor to modern air travel. In the present day, vehicles powered by the sun are in development at test sites around the world, using high tech photoelectric cells and space age materials to use energy from our nearest star.

Following their successful experience in Southern California Solar Sprint Car Competition last year, students from Alsion Montessori Middle/High School aren't just dreaming about the future, they have embraced it. True to the Montessori tradition of individualized learning and motivation, these students have excelled in the creative and competitive world of alternative forms of propulsion. In a National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) sanctioned meet, open to all comers, solar-powered vehicles will race against time and each other to complete a course, fittingly, in the historic setting of Mission San Jose in Fremont. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is the U.S. Department of Energy's primary national laboratory for renewable energy and energy efficiency research and development.

Competition is open to all students in grades 6, 7 and 8 without registration fees. However, car construction is restricted to student-made entries only and, prior to judging, cars will be subject to rigorous inspection. Individuals and school teams are invited to compete. For more information and to register, call (510) 445-1127 or visit: More information and tips on how to build your entry can be found at:

Everyone is invited to view the future of travel!

Junior Solar Sprint Car Competition
Saturday, Apr 20
Check-in: 9 a.m.
Inspection & Judging: 10 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.
Races begin: 12 noon
43300 Mission Blvd., Fremont
(behind Old Mission San Jose)
(510) 445-1127

Alsion, named after the Ohlone Indian settlement, now called Mission San Jose, is focused on the individual needs of each adolescent as he or she undergoes the critical transformation from child to young adult. Its curriculum and teaching expertise is designed to advance motivated students beyond State standards. Alsion Montessori Middle/High is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. A workshop for parents of prospective students will be held Sunday, April 21 from 1 p.m. - 3 p.m. Call Rebecca Buzsaki at (510) 445-1127 for more information.

Photo Caption: Darren Tong, Young Wang, Dustin Tong

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