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Plenty of leaps & bounds
Local frog jockeys jump at 9th annual contest

by David Fleet

August 07, 2013

Brandon Twp.-A small pond in the middle of Wojo's Garden Center has jump-started a long time tradition.

On Saturday, Wojo's Greenhouse hosted the ninth annual Frog Jumping Contest—attracting about 80 contestants to their pad at 2570 Oakwood Road. Lisa Kemeny, general manager of Wojo's Greenhouse, said the frog jumping has become a family tradition.

This year a record 66 youth ages 3-13-years-old and 15 adults competed.

"The pond attracts frogs from the creek out behind our greenhouse," she said. "Sometimes there will be 30 to 50 frogs in there swimming around the gold fish and other critters. So about nine years ago we decided to catch the frogs and hold a frog jumping contest for customers and their children. The event just kept growing over the years."

The contest incorporates a 30-foot circle with four frogs in the center. The contestants then encourage their frogs to jump outward toward the edge of the circle. The first frog out of the circle wins and the competition continues until all the contestants have finished their jumps.

"The best I've seen is about a 4-foot jump at one time," she said. "Tree frogs and toads, while accepted in the competition, are not the best jumpers. The bigger frogs jump fewer times, but at a greater distance. Conversely, the smaller frogs jump more often, but not as far and are less clumsy. Many of the best jumping frogs are caught by local residents and they bring them in for the competition. Either way all the frogs are safe and returned to the wild after jumping."