Madison high schooler’s homemade lightsaber wins gold medal

Local News

In this Sunday, Feb. 10, 2019, photo, competitors battle during a national lightsaber tournament in Beaumont-sur-Oise, north of Paris. In France, it is easier than ever now to act out “Star Wars” fantasies. The fencing federation has officially recognized lightsaber dueling as a competitive sport. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A Madison high schooler has won an award for building his own lightsaber.

Wisconsin Public Radio reports that Madison Country Day School senior Kaebren Walker’s creation earned him a gold medal at the NAACP’s Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics. The 43rd annual event involved about 500 students competing in categories including science, engineering and the humanities.

The winners were announced during the NAACP convention in July.

Walker said he got the idea while watching “Return of the Jedi.” It took him 18 months to build the lightsaber.

It ignites acetone and methanol, which evaporates in a 3-foot span that becomes the blade. He said it looks more like a thin flamethrower than a lightsaber.

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