Thanks to Generous Support, Discovery Park’s Canstruction Returns Bigger Than Ever
Union City, Tenn. – Discovery Park of America will once again host Canstruction, an international charity competition where architects, engineers, contractors, teachers and the students they mentor compete to design and build giant structures made from full cans of food.
Thanks to generous support from Carol and Bill Latimer, Ben E. Keith Foods, Westan Insurance Group and Forcum Lannom Materials, Discovery Park is able to increase the number of cans purchased for the competition and 12 student teams will be able to compete. This is the largest number of teams competing since Discovery Park first began participating in 2017.
At the close of the competition, the cans are donated to food banks local to the event. Canstruction was founded in 1992 by Cheri Melillo and has since raised millions of pounds of food for food banks in participating cities across the world. With more than 170 cities and over 30,000 volunteers participating in Canstruction competitions, it has grown to become one of the largest food drives for food bank donations in the world.
The sculptures created by the student teams at Discovery Park’s competition will be on display at Discovery Park through November 2021 and then will be donated to Chimes for Charity, Helping Hands and Reelfoot Rural Ministries in Obion County, Tenn. and Matthew 25:40 in Dyer County, Tenn.
Student teams design their sculptures ahead of time and are given a budget of $500 to purchase the cans they will use to build their creation. On Oct. 29, 2021, the students will arrive at Discovery Park where each team will be assigned a space and allotted three hours to create their sculpture. A luncheon and awards ceremony will take place after the competition.
“This event is special for all of us at Discovery Park for many reasons,” said Polly Brasher, the museum and park’s director of education. “Not only is it always amazing to see the students’ creations, the idea of bringing this to our region came from the late Jenny Kirkland, wife of Discovery Park founder Robert Kirkland after she saw it taking place in Memphis. She very much loved this event and seeing what the talented young people created.”
Teachers interested in applying to participate with their student group should fill out the online application as soon as possible as this competition is available to the first 12 who apply.