Ellis, Austin Catholic sixth-graders win Lions peace poster contest

Published 10:04 am Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Jesus Reynua, a sixth-grade student at Ellis Middle School, and Maggie Lief, a sixth-grader at Austin Catholic Elementary School, have taken the first steps to becoming internationally recognized artists by winning a local peace poster competition sponsored by the Austin Noon Lions Club.

All posters submitted for the contest were displayed in the community room at Oak Park Mall where the winners were recognized.  This year’s theme was “Peace Begins With Me.”

Each student has been awarded a $100 savings bond as a local winner.  Savings bonds of $50 were also given to four students who received honorable mention status: Tiffany Hoesing and Katherine Ethen from the Catholic Elementary School and Jacob Wigant and Natalie Sayles from Ellis.

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These savings bond prizes are provided by local banks:  Community Bank, First Farmers & Merchants Bank, Sterling State Bank, Home Federal Savings and Loan, Accentra Credit Union, and U.S. Banks.

The Lions Club is grateful for the support of the teachers and administration of both schools in making this an annual creative project.

Austin Noon Lions Club event chairperson, Bruce Richardson said he was impressed by the amount of effort and creativity exhibited by the students.

“It’s obvious that these young people have strong ideas about peace,” he said. “I’m proud that we were able to provide them with the opportunity to share their visions with all of us.

“Both Jesus’s and Maggie’s posters now advance to district competition where their entries will complete against entries from many other local Peace Poster Contests,” Richardson added. “These posters will face tough competition through the district round and in three more rounds of international competition if either is to be declared the international grand prize winner.”

Lions Clubs International is sponsoring the contest to emphasize the importance of world peace to young people everywhere.

Ultimately a prize winner will be selected from 24 international finalists.  The grand prize includes a cash award of $2,500, plus an all-expenses-paid trip for the winner and two family members to New York City for the awards ceremony at Lions Day with the United Nations.  As merit award winners, the remaining 23 finalists will each receive certificates and a cash award of $500.