LIVERPOOL TWP. — Ella Skvor may only be 3 years old, but she’s already a veteran frog jumper.
The Oberlin resident and her father, Bryon Skvor, braved the rain and were crowned grand champions of the 50th annual Liverpool Township Frog Jump Festival on Sunday, already Ella’s third time in the competition and second trip to the finals.
With about 30 family members in attendance from Lorain and Medina counties, Bryon Skvor said his mother made T-shirts for each jumper with the number of years each has been jumping written on the back of the shirt.
The jump competitors placed their frogs in the center of a parachute on the ground. Without touching the frogs, it was up to the competitors to yell or slap the ground to encourage their frogs to make three large jumps. Wherever the frog landed on its third jump marked its total distance from the center.
With “3rd year frog jumping” displayed on her shirt, Ella and her father took their frog, which they caught themselves and named Mumford, to the center of the parachute at Mill Stream Park and watched it jump to a winning distance of 15 feet, 8 inches during the final round. It was the longest jump of the day.
Ella’s technique? Laughing at her frog.
“Wahahaha!” Ella said after she won the competition, re-enacting her winning performance.
Each of Skvor’s three children, including Ella’s siblings Silas, 5, and Asher, 1, had frogs make it to the finals.
Ella started when she was 6 months old and three years later has taken home trophies for winning her division, having the longest jump of the day and being grand champion.
She said she will be displaying the trophies “on my dresser.”
About 525 people jumped a frog on Sunday, a number lower than most years, possibly a result of rainy weather, one of the event’s organizers, Barb Knight, said.
They started on time, but “a couple of times it really poured,” she said, and those who came despite the weather didn’t seem to mind.
“They just looked like they’d been in a swimming pool,” Knight said. “But they seemed to be enjoying it.”
Contact Jennifer Pignolet at (330) 721-4063 or firstname.lastname@example.org.