Eighty-four excited North Branch Middle School seventh graders recently displayed their artistic views on the importance of world peace in the 2013 International Lions Peace Poster Contest. The theme for the international competition is “Our World, Our Future.”
The top five entries were announced Nov. 15 in ceremonies at the middle school. All five received certificates and cash awards from the North Branch Lions, represented by Lion Don Hartzell, chapter peace poster chairman.
The first place winner will advance to the Lions District level, and if she advances through the other steps will end up competing in the international competition. The grand prize winner will be announced at Lions Day at the United Nations in New York in March 2014. That winner will receive a $5,000 (or country equivalent) cash prize and an award. Twenty-three Merit Award winners will each receive $500 (or country equivalent) and a certificate of achievement.
This year’s top local award winner in the international competition is Abigail Kingsbury, daughter of Jessica Saucedo. Second place went to Sydney Schroeder; third, Abby Johnson; fourth, Emily Kristo; fifth, Caitlyn Carlson, not present because of illness.
“As I created my poster,” Abigail explained, “I thought peace means freedom, but freedom is earned by peace. I thought of the idea to add flags from countries around the world. Then I decided to put a globe in the middle and have God hugging the globe in a sign of peace and happiness. I included two white doves that represent peace.”
“The kids can’t use any words to get their message across, so it is quite a challenge,” added Mary Colvin, art teacher and project leader. “Every year the kids get really excited about the project and really work at it.”
North Branch Dairy Queen donated certificates for treats for all 84 participating students, according to Hartzell.