A stinky good time Students show out at science fair

Published 11:45 pm Friday, February 24, 2012

Some of the projects at the annual Vicksburg Warren School District Science Fair stunk — literally.

Ten of the more than 200 contestants took science to the extreme with projects ranging from the intentionally gross to the accidently disgusting.

St. Francis Xavier Elementary School fourth-grader Coleman Verhine’s project tried to identify the most environmentally friendly repellent for live cockroaches. It grossed out his neighboring contestant, Warren Central Intermediate sixth-grader Larubyan Bailey.

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“I like it (the project) but I don’t like cockroaches,” said a queasy-looking Larubyan as she looked at Coleman’s display of plastic bugs “I’m scared of cockroaches and all kinds of bugs.”

The subject of her project was a much more likeable insect — the butterfly.

Larubyan, who is the daughter of Latrina Hawkins and Ronald Bailey, said she was glad Coleman didn’t have the real roaches on display.

“If I had the live ones, I would probably be throwing them at people,” the 10-year-old Coleman joked.

Coleman knew from the start that his project was on the disgusting side and that he would have to build a roach haven to house the creepy-crawly creatures.

When he told his parents, Cathi and Scott Verhine, and grandmother, Jan Strickland, about his idea to experiment with bugs, they were supportive.

Coleman wanted to handle the bugs with his bare hands, but his mother made him wear gloves. His father showed his support from a distance.