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Cuba by Fruitville Elementary students AvaMae C., Axell F., Lola M., and Abby M.

During the 2017 World Rowing Championships, students in Manatee and Sarasota counties are taking advantage of having the world in their backyard.

The WRC's Adopt a Team Initiative allows students to learn about a particular country participating in the marquee regatta at Nathan Benderson Park. Sponsored by the 2017 World Rowing Championships, Embracing our Differences and the school districts of Sarasota and Manatee counties, students will have the opportunity to design a piece of artwork based on what they learn about their matched country. The art will be displayed on large canvases at the 2017 World Rowing Championships' Embracing Our Differences Rowing Art Exhibit. More than 40,000 spectators and 1,700 athletes are expected to see the students' artwork. 

"This initiative shows that America is embracing this event. We are taking this seriously and it shows we want to be a part of [the athletes'] culture, and [that we] respect their culture," says Meredith Scerba, executive director of the 2017 World Rowing Championships.  

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Czech Republic by W.D. Sugg Middle School student Sierra B. 

In addition to having their artwork displayed at the event, the students will travel from school to the 2017 World Rowing Championships. Over the course of three days, the WRC will host 6,000 students, who will be able to watch some racing events and meet representatives from the country that they learned about.

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