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Volunteers Ben Quartermaine and Mike Elfers keep track of how many pounds the bridge holds before cracking.

Pressure builds in toothpick challenge

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

Volunteers Ben Quartermaine and Mike Elfers keep track of how many pounds the bridge holds before cracking.

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Wendy Kuhns, an engineering teacher at Sarasota High School, and Staci LaPorte, a math teacher at Suncoast Polytechnical High School, celebrate after Kuhns' bridge held 25 poundings before breaking.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

Wendy Kuhns, an engineering teacher at Sarasota High School, and Staci LaPorte, a math teacher at Suncoast Polytechnical High School, celebrate after Kuhns' bridge held 25 poundings before breaking.

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Matthew Wiley and Jayden Raymond, freshmen at Suncoast Polytechnical High School, love seeing how different bridges do under pressure.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

Matthew Wiley and Jayden Raymond, freshmen at Suncoast Polytechnical High School, love seeing how different bridges do under pressure.

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After students are done testing their bridges, they throw them in a pile to be completely destroyed.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

After students are done testing their bridges, they throw them in a pile to be completely destroyed.

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A bridge cracks under the pressure.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

A bridge cracks under the pressure.

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The Toothpick Bridge Challenge had 210 bridges in the contest.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

The Toothpick Bridge Challenge had 210 bridges in the contest.

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Volunteers Molly Williams and Allie Bittle measure and weigh a bridge.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

Volunteers Molly Williams and Allie Bittle measure and weigh a bridge.

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Bradenton's Amanda Hakes, who is 7, can't wait to see how many pounds her arch bridge will hold. This year's challenge was her first.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

Bradenton's Amanda Hakes, who is 7, can't wait to see how many pounds her arch bridge will hold. This year's challenge was her first.

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Volunteer Mike Elfers makes sure the bridge is secure before adding pressure.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

Volunteer Mike Elfers makes sure the bridge is secure before adding pressure.

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Suncoast Polytechnical High School freshmen Austin Bilello, Anton Becker and Vince Schweig watch as Schweig's bridge cracks under six pounds of pressure.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

Suncoast Polytechnical High School freshmen Austin Bilello, Anton Becker and Vince Schweig watch as Schweig's bridge cracks under six pounds of pressure.

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Bradenton's Nathaniel Hakes takes a video of his daughter Emma Hakes' bridge being tested.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

Bradenton's Nathaniel Hakes takes a video of his daughter Emma Hakes' bridge being tested.

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A bridge holds more than 65 pounds of pressure before finally cracking.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

A bridge holds more than 65 pounds of pressure before finally cracking.

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Sarasota's Val Warren and her son Jossiah Warren, who is 6, watch in amusement as a bridge takes on more and more pressure before breaking.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

Sarasota's Val Warren and her son Jossiah Warren, who is 6, watch in amusement as a bridge takes on more and more pressure before breaking.

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An arch bridge breaks inward under pressure.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

An arch bridge breaks inward under pressure.

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Staci LaPorte, a math teacher at Suncoast Polytechnical High School, got in on the fun and entered her own bridge into the contest. Her bridge started crushing just under 15 pounds of pressure.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

Staci LaPorte, a math teacher at Suncoast Polytechnical High School, got in on the fun and entered her own bridge into the contest. Her bridge started crushing just under 15 pounds of pressure.

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Staci LaPorte, a math teacher at Suncoast Polytechnical High School, takes video of her bridge being tested.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

Staci LaPorte, a math teacher at Suncoast Polytechnical High School, takes video of her bridge being tested.

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Maria Becerra, a freshman at Suncoast Polytechnical High School, and Kamryn Barker, a sophomore at the school, wait in line to have their bridges tested.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

Maria Becerra, a freshman at Suncoast Polytechnical High School, and Kamryn Barker, a sophomore at the school, wait in line to have their bridges tested.

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Om Patel, a sophomore at Sarasota High School, watches in amazement as his bridge holds more than 40 pounds of pressure. He was expecting his bridge to break after 20 pounds.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

Om Patel, a sophomore at Sarasota High School, watches in amazement as his bridge holds more than 40 pounds of pressure. He was expecting his bridge to break after 20 pounds.

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Volunteer Mike Elfers removes Sarasota High School sophomore Om Patel's bridge from the crusher. It held 40 pounds of pressure.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021 |

Volunteer Mike Elfers removes Sarasota High School sophomore Om Patel's bridge from the crusher. It held 40 pounds of pressure.

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