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Murray Journal

Local schoolchildren excel in Arbor Day poster contest

Jul 26, 2017 04:06PM ● By Julie Slama

Liberty Elementary Arbor Day winners include Meredith Nelson, Liza Jorgensen, Ellie Ogden and Katelyn Jorgensen. (Roxanne Nelson/Liberty Elementary)

Twin Peaks fifth-grader Abby Groch and her classmates spent time in their class creating posters around the theme, “Trees are terrific storytellers of the past!” 

“Our teacher told everyone they can make a poster for the contest and as I looked around, everyone was drawing rings around a tree, counting how old it was,” she said. “So I decided to draw a cartoon tree with a face reading a book to little forest animals.”

Using colored pencils, and working on it in class for about 20 hours, Abby said she turned it in along with everyone else.

“I’m not as good drawing realistically or people, so I liked my drawing, but didn’t know if they would,” she said.

About two weeks later, she received a letter in the mail saying she was the citywide grade winner.

“I was just in awe and so happy,” she said, adding that she followed the footsteps of her aunt, who won when she was a Twin Peaks student.

Abby was just one of several citywide Arbor Day poster winners. Others included 3-year-old winner Trinity Ansted, Murray Community Pre-School; 4-year-old winner Wade Martin, Murray Community Pre-School; kindergartner Isaac Cameron, Liberty Elementary; first-grader Lila Minnis, McMillan Elementary; second-grader Caleb Curley, Parkside Elementary; third-grader Izabella Delgado, Horizon Elementary; fourth-grader Elyse Crandall, Viewmont Elementary; and sixth-grader Anna Jacobs, McMillan Elementary.

Isaac also won the best of the central region, said Bruce Turner, Murray Power operations manager.

“We supply the poster paper to the schools and the teacher is able to get students involved, some do programs around the theme, others research and encourage projects,” he said about the program Murray Power has supported for at least 40 years. “It makes the kids more aware of trees and what they do for us other than they’re there just to climb or be cut down.”

Turner said the Shade Tree Commission judges the entries on both the artwork and the message they convey. A number of winners are invited to the picnic luncheon, which follows a city event with booths featuring games and activities for the students. Then, the students are presented certificates and usually shake hands with the Murray mayor.

“It’s a great program where all the Murray kids can be involved and learn,” he said.

Liberty sixth-grader Meredith Nelson, who was also honored at the ceremony, used color pencils over a couple hours to draw her entry.

“I like art and I enjoyed creating my poster,” she said. “I wasn’t sure mine was the best, but it was fun to do. When I got the letter in the mail inviting me to the citywide luncheon, I was so surprised.”

Meredith drew a picture of a girl telling a story in amongst a forest.

“I imagined it to be up in the mountains, like the setting I picture when my grandpa tells me stories,” she said. “I used my imagination so it could be anything I wanted it to be. I like being creative.”