The Georgia Department of Natural Resources holds a conservation art contest each year in which students ranging from kindergarten to fifth grade are able to enter. The 30th annual contest’s theme was “Georgia Bogs: Unique Wetlands for Rare Species.”
Even the coronavirus pandemic could not put a damper on the contest as 538 kindergarten through fifth-grade students from seven public schools, private schools, and homeschool groups participated this year. Students entered the contest at the school level first and the school level winners were then sent to the statewide contest. Of those participants, 12 students were announced as winners in the four contest divisions. Entries were judged on aspects such as theme, originality and the quality and impact of the artwork.
The division winners are:
Division 1: Kindergarten
- First: Aviv Arellano, age 5, Suwanee Homeschool, Suwanee.
- Second: John Long, 5, Sara Harp Minter Elementary, Fayetteville.
- Third: Joslin Loden, 6, Jack P. Nix Elementary, Cleveland.
Division 2: First-second grades
- First: Payton M. Delaney, 8, second grade, Camp Scene Environmental Adventures, Decatur.
- Second: Lacey Beckman, 8, first grade, Jack P. Nix Elementary, Cleveland.
- Third: Ozeio Norris, 8, second grade, Suwanee Homeschool, Suwanee.
Division 3: Third-fourth grades
- First: Liam Pressley, 8, third grade, Suwanee Homeschool, Suwanee.
- Second: Alfonzo Mitchell, 10, fourth grade, Fayetteville Elementary, Fayetteville.
- Third: Lucy Hicks, 9, fourth grade, St. Joseph Catholic School, Athens.
Division 4: Fifth grade
- First: Carter Shalosky, 11, Camp Scene Environmental Adventures, Decatur.
- Second: Evie Pressley, 10, Suwanee Homeschool, Suwanee.
- Third: Starla Poole, 11, Jack P. Nix Elementary, Cleveland.
Winning submissions are showcased on the DNR Wildlife Resources Division’s SmugMug site at https://bit.ly/2X5WRTX. Plans to display the winning artwork at the State Botanical Garden were cancelled due to the closing of the Visitor Center and Conservatory amidst coronavirus concerns.
Although the State Botanical Garden buildings and Children’s Garden are temporarily closed, the grounds and trails are open on an adjusted schedule. Visitors can enjoy strolling through the beautiful native and horticultural varieties of trees, shrubs and flowering plants. Songbirds and pollinators such as bees, butterflies and hummingbirds abound across both the manicured and wild landscapes. This public garden is a gift to Georgia residents and visitors; therefore, parking and admission are free. Learn more at botgarden.uga.edu or call (706) 542-1244.
The Give Wildlife a Chance Poster Contest is sponsored by the DNR Wildlife Resources Division, the State Botanical Garden and The Environmental Resources Network, or TERN, friends group of the Wildlife Resources Division’s Wildlife Conservation Section. For more information, visit georgiawildlife.com/PosterContest.
— Staff Reports