Palos Heights students' contest-winning game hits shelves

PALOS HEIGHTS, Ill. (WLS) -- Two fifth graders at Palos East Elementary School created a game that won a national contest and now the game has hit store shelves.

The principal of Palos East said they weren't just celebrating the young inventors, but also their classmates, teachers, parents and friends who collaborated and communicated to help the young girls achieve their goal.

Palos East honored Olivia Wasilewski and Brynna Siewers with a pep rally, which was pirate-themed like their winning game. Ship of Treasures took top honors in the Young Inventors Challenge.

"I didn't know what to say, I was like, 'Wah! What's happening??'" Olivia recalled.

After winning the grand prize in 2016, the girls worked hand in hand with experts to package and perfect their game, which hit the shelves at Target stores on Oct. 1.

"It's a brilliant idea, because who knows better about games than kids, and they know what they like," said Beth Engleman, teacher.

The girls' winning concept is a 3-D board game that takes players on a treasure hunt. They shared advice for others who also hope to make winning games.

"Have fun, work hard, and critique your game as much as you can to make it the best it can be," Brynna advised.

The deadline to register for this year's Young Inventor Challenge is Oct. 28. The 2017 challenge takes place Nov. 18, the first day of the annual Chicago Toy and Game Fair at Navy Pier.
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