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Youth art competition calls for entries

David Richie hangs childrens art pieces last year just before the Helper Art Festival.

Members of the 2005 Helper Arts Festival's 5th annual Youth Art Competition are busy collecting and accepting art from the students of the area.

Each year all youth ages preschool through high school from Carbon and Emery counties are encouraged to submit all types of art for the Youth Art Competition and Exhibit. Held in conjunction with the Helper Arts Festival, the Youth Art Competition will accept artwork until June 1. Awards will be given and the exhibit held during the Helper Arts Festival, August 19-21 during a special reception at the Helper Civic Auditorium. The work remains on display throughout the three day Arts Festival so that all can enjoy it.

"This is a great way to showcase the talents of the children and youth of Carbon and Emery counties" said Aimee Lauritsen, a member of the Youth Art Competition committee. "I am hopeful that all teachers and parents will encourage the youth to participate in the competition this year."

Lauritsen explained that this year there will be special categories for the Castle Valley Center and preschools, groups that haven't been targeted before.

"We also encourage home schooled children to enter" she said. The competition, started in 2000 by local artists Thomas Elmo Williams and David Richey Johnsen, has grown each year. Last year 135 youth from the area participated showcasing all kinds of art, from sculpture to painting. Peter Mantas won Best of Show while Shawn Hight won Most Promising student. Many other students walked away with ribbons for being the best in their age group.

"It's a real ego booster for the kids, and something they never forget" Lauritsen said. Although the artwork has generally been picked up from the schools in the past, parents can make sure their child's work is included by contacting Lauritsen directly.

"We don't want to leave even one child out" she said. "Our children are the artists of tomorrow." Parents and teachers can contact Lauritsen for pickup and drop off information. 637-1771 or 613-5646

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