Ryan Paskewitz of Zephyr, son of Comanche Electric Cooperative members Curtis and Paula Paskewitz, is the grand prizewinner of the 2012 Co-op Teens Power Texas video contest.
Paskewitz’s entry, “Mr. Electricity,” features himself as a masked superhero saving a woman, played by Zephyr High School math teacher Dena Peters, in great distress over a high electricity bill. The school’s technology director, Terrell Hess, also collaborated on the video.
“It started out with just me and my parents, and we were going to make a video of me playing the guitar and singing a song about the co-op,” said Paskewitz, who is entering his junior year. “But then Mr. Hess suggested doing the superhero thing—one of the rules was to be creative and have youth appeal—and I thought it was a good idea, and my mother agreed. I’m not a superhero fan, but it was fun.”
In the video, Mr. Electricity advises the audience to switch from incandescent lightbulbs and an old water heater to their more energy-efficient counterparts.
It didn’t take long for the good news to spread. One afternoon in math class, someone brought Paskewitz the phone. “It was my mom, and she was in an uproar. ‘YOU WON, YOU WON,’ she screamed,” said Paskewitz. “I was like, ‘Wow.’ I didn’t know what to think. I got the damsel in distress, and she was over the top. I told Mr. Hess. Thirty minutes later, the whole school knew. It was a ton of fun.”
As the winner of the video contest, Paskewitz received $1,500, which he plans on using for a trip to Japan. As the sponsoring school, Zephyr High will receive $1,000.
The contest, sponsored by Texas Co-op Power in conjunction with electric co-ops across Texas, asked students in grades six through 12 to create a 30- to 60-second commercial promoting their respective electric cooperative. You can view Paskewitz’s winning video along with other prize-winning videos here: youtube.com/user/TXCOOPOWER.
Ashley Clary-Carpenter, field editor
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