LOWELL | As excited as he was March 7 when he learned the Lowell Academic Decathlon team he coaches was heading to the nationals, English teacher Joe Gianotti had to think about money.
The trip to the nationals opens Wednesday for a four-day run at the Hilton Minneapolis. The cost is $12,000 for airfare and the hotel stay for the team.
Gianotti told the Tri-Creek School Corp. board last week his initial money fears have been allayed.
"I'm humbled almost daily," Gianotti said of residents' response to the team's fundraising efforts.
The team did a presentation for the Lowell Lions Club and was awarded a $1,200 donation.
Team members worked a recent Lowell Lions Club pancake breakfast and hosted a fish fry over the weekend.
Lowell High Academic Decathlon teams have finished second place in the state seven times over the past 12 years.
This team earned state runner-up in the Large School Division to champion Martinsville High.
This year, however, Indiana was selected to have two teams represent the Hoosier state because U.S. Academic Decathlon officials decided to include the 12 highest scoring second-place finishers throughout the country.
The teams leaves Tuesday and returns Sunday.
Most donations have come through the Tri-Creek Education Foundation and are still being accepted. The foundation can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (219) 750-1262.