VFW announces Education Contest winners
The VFW Post 4902 would like to congratulate the winners of this year’s Voice of Democracy and Patriots Pen contests.   We are so grateful for the participation and the enthusiasm this community has for these programs and always look forward to the talented responses to the themes provided.
The Voice of Democracy audio-essay program provides high school students with the unique opportunity to express themselves in regards to a democratic and patriotic-themed recorded essay.  The theme this year was “Is This the Country the Founders Envisioned?
The Patriots Pen youth essay contest is for students in grades 6-8 in which they express their views on an annual patriotic theme in a 300-400 word essay.  This year’s theme was “What is patriotism to me?”
There are awards and cash prizes and the first place winner is forwarded to the district to continue to compete.
This year’s first place Voice of Democracy winner was Leann Lightfield of Prairie High School earning $200.  Jade Prigge was second earning $150 and Erin Wassmuth was third earning $100, both from St. John Bosco Academy. 
This year’s first place Patriot’s Pen winner was Noelle Chmelik of St. Joh Bosco earning $150.  Rachel Sonnen of St. John Bosco was second earning $100 and Olivia Uhlenkott of Prairie Elementary earning $75.
The VFW Post 4902 is both proud and appreciative of all the contestants that participated in this year’s contest as they continue to shine a great light on our community values.  Thank all of you.
We would also like to show our appreciation for the judges this year, Brad and Cindy Higgins and Nicole Kinzer.   We truly appreciate you time and the difficulty in having to choose winners from all the great entries.
Please look forward to the release of next year’s theme for these contests.

Four of the six winners in the VFW Voice of Democracy and Patriot’s Pen competitions for Post 4902 were St. John Bosco Academy students. From left are Erin Wassmuth, 3rd and Jade Prigge, 2nd in the Voice of Democracy contest, Noelle Chmelik, 1st , and Rachel Sonnen 2nd in the Patriot’s Pen competition and Dale McElroy chairman for the competitions for VFW Post 4902. Photo provided by St. John Bosco Academy.

Leann Lightfield, a Prairie High School student, was this year’s Voice of Democracy overall winner for VFW Post 4902. She is shown with education competitions chairman Dale McElroy and Post Commander David Frei of the VFW. Photo provided by Jon Rehder.

Olivia Uhlenkott, a Prairie Elementary School student, was the third place Patriot’s Pen winner for VFW Post 4902 this year. She is flanked by Dale McElroy, left, and David Frei, right. Photo provided by Rene’ Forsmann.




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