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Student is mayor for a day

Williamstown second-grader won essay contest

May 9, 2008
By Michael Erb, Special to The Times
WILLIAMSTOWN — Much like her grandfather who was the youngest serving mayor in the city of Cairo, W.Va., 8-year-old Ivy Linger now bears the distinction of being one of the youngest mayors in the city of Williamstown, at least for one day.

The Williamstown Elementary School second-grader was honorary mayor Thursday, spending the day touring city facilities and even attending a business partnership signing between Hino Motors and the elementary school.

In the fall Linger received a scholarship through the state treasurer’s office for writing an essay on how she one day would like to be mayor of Parkersburg. The Smart 529 When I Grow Up contest received 1,100 entries from students throughout the state, with 15 chosen as finalists.

Since Linger attends school in Williamstown, school officials made arrangements with Mayor Jean Ford to have the second-grader shadow her for a day.

“I’m thrilled to have her here,” Ford said. “She’s just been such a joy.”

Linger’s grandfather, Walter Schoolcraft, was the youngest serving mayor in Cairo, Ritchie County, and Linger said she had hoped to follow in his footsteps. In her essay she talked about the excitement of being in charge and riding on floats during parades to throw out candy.

Though Linger said she had no plans to make any immediate changes in Williamstown, she did have some ideas for ways to improve the town.

“A teacher suggested we make a big bin in the middle of Williamstown for everyone to recycle,” she said, adding there is no recycling program in the city. “I think that would be a good thing to do.”

When asked anything other than a mayor she would want to be when she grew up, Linger hesitated.

“That’s a hard question,” she said. “I’ve been wanting to be mayor for a long time. President would be a little too much, but governor ... yeah, maybe governor.”

Article Photos

MICHAEL ERB Special to The Times
Ivy Linger, a second-grader at Williamstown Elementary School, was named honorary mayor of Williamstown Thursday



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