Pingpong balls get people running

Published 12:00 am Monday, July 31, 2006

By Kari Lucin, staff writer

HOLLANDALE &045; Quite a different crowd gathered for a pingpong ball drop Saturday morning, in the field near the Hollandale Christian School.

Area kids and parents sheltered from the sun in the shade while they waited for a crop duster to come and drop hundreds of pingpong balls from the sky. As time grew closer to the drop, people inched reluctantly out onto the open field, where there was no shade.

&8220;It’s a hot day for this. It’s a nice addition, when they’ve incorporated the kid’s stuff,&8221; said Jill Louters of Hollandale.

Jill and her son Pieter Louters also participated in the kiddie parade and the grand parade as well as some of Hollandale’s other festival activities.

Pieter managed to grab 14 pingpong balls when the plane finally came by, buzzing over the trees to the field and dropping a hailstorm of balls &045; on the opposite side of the field from where everyone was standing.

A mad dash to the balls started, with kids and parents sprinting over the field despite the hot weather, all to gather up a few of the precious balls that could be traded in for prizes and candy.

The kids were allowed to pick up as many white balls as they wanted, but only a single red ball, which represented a bigger prize. Plenty of area businesses donated prizes for the event &045; pizzas, toys, screwdrivers, a quilt, toy trucks and even a toy John Deere tractor.

A few kids were upset when they didn’t gather as many pingpong balls as they wanted, but every single kid could get candy from the event &045; whether or not they managed to get any pingpong balls at all.