Harford Christian School kept its winning streak alive in Friday's 2014 Harford County Envirothon, the eighth straight triumph for the northern Harford School.
Teams from eight Harford County public and private high schools were at Camp Spencer at the Broad Creek Scout Camp for the competition.
Because of the rainy weather, most of the testing stations were moved indoors or under some sort of cover, either in one of the two dining halls or in the large pavilion.
The soil station was a short walk through the occasional heavy downpour where a pop up tent provided some cover.
The Envirothon, which is managed by the Harford Soil Conservation District, tests the students on their knowledge in the categories of aquatics, forestry, soils and wildlife, as well as an environmental issue chosen specifically for each year's competition. This year's so-called Fifth Topic, for which there is a written and oral exam, was sustainable agriculture products grown locally.
With the rain having been forecast, students and staff were prepared for the most part ,with rain gear and umbrellas at the ready. The soil pit was equipped with a row of pallets to keep students from slipping in the mud as they entered to identify the soil layers and answer other questions posted by the testers.
The sun broke through in the early afternoon, offering a reprieve from the soggy morning and drying things out enough for the awards ceremony.
Harford Christian's winning score of 503 points included first place finishes in soils, wildlife, forestry, aquatics and the written portion of the Fifth Topic. Bel Air High's team finished second with 437 points, and North Harford High's team was third with 417.
Harford Christian's winning A team included Gracie Shannahan, Danielle Reifer, Savannah Kane, Brooke Fletcher and Nick Giro. The Harford Christian B team also took first in that level of the competition.
Shannahan and Reifer returned from last year's A team that won the state competition and made it to the national Envirothon competition in Bozeman, Mont.
"We worked really hard with the new people we had and I'm really excited," Gracie said.
"After having so many people leave last year, it was great to have a team of new people win," Danielle said.
The Harford Christian team will move on to the state competition at Camp Pecometh in Centreville June 18-19.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun