9th ANNUAL CONNECTICUT ESSAY
CONTEST HONORS 25 FOURTH GRADE WRITERS
Students Describe Their Favorite CT Places to Visit and Why
(Hartford, CT) - June 11, 2003 - The results are
in from fourth graders in Connecticut. Their favorite places to visit are: Kent
Falls, Strawberry Park Campground in Preston, Lake Compounce, Mohawk Mountain
Ski Area and Lyman Orchards in Middlefield. According to the five top winners in
this year's Connecticut Essay Contest, these are the most fun, peaceful and
inspiring places in the state. According to the contest judges, they are the
places best expressed by young writers in Connecticut today.
During an awards ceremony at the State Capitol
today, the Connecticut Office of Tourism and the Office of the Secretary of the
State recognized 25 fourth graders for their writing skills in this year's 9th
Annual Connecticut Essay Contest. The contest, co-sponsored by the two agencies,
challenged fourth grade students from elementary schools statewide to explore
and report on unique or favorite places to visit in Connecticut. The ceremony
also featured an appearance by Suzy Kline, a Connecticut author well-known for
the Horrible Harry children's book series.
Secretary of the State Susan Bysiewicz and Ed
Dombroskas, executive director of the Connecticut Office of Tourism, Department
of Economic and Community Development recognized the winners. Students statewide
submitted essays on the topic: Describe your favorite place in Connecticut,
and why you would recommend it to a visitor.
"The annual essay contest is an excellent
way for students to put their thoughts in writing and share their discoveries
about Connecticut with others," said Mr. Dombroskas before dubbing all 25
students honorary Ambassadors of Tourism and thanking parents and teachers for
supporting children's growth and education.
"There's a tremendous amount of state pride
that students express in their essays, and when young people are engaged in
their communities, they begin to develop a sense of citizenship that strengthens
families and communities. We are delighted to be an annual co-sponsor of this
program because we've seen how much it inspires children to continue writing and
discovering new places in Connecticut," said Secretary of the State Susan
Winning essays in five divisions explored a wide
range of personal discoveries, from historical and cultural heritage to
observations on nature and state parks in Connecticut. Lauren Hutchinson, a
first place winner and student at Mill Ridge Intermediate School in Danbury,
described how Kent Falls took her breath away the first time she saw it - and
how exciting it is to climb the falls on stone steps built into the rock.
Sara Ghavidel, a first place winner from
Greenwich Catholic School, examined the definition of a family and suggested
that the solution to keeping families together is simple.
"To me, camping is the solution. Camping
unites families together," she wrote in her essay on Strawberry Park
Campground in Preston. "…Camping allows families to spend a lot more time
together at very lost cost."
Winners received award certificates and
"Full of Surprises" bags that included an array of admission tickets
and souvenirs from state attractions. In addition, each student received copies
of guest author Suzy Kline's book Horrible Harry Goes to Sea, a book set
in Essex, Connecticut, that she autographed at the end of the ceremony. Essays
of the top five winners will be posted on the Office of Tourism's website, www.ctbound.org
in the 4-kids section, as well as on the ConneCTkids website, www.kids.state.ct.us.
# # #
- A complete list of
winners, their schools and towns is
attached to the release.
- Copies of the essays are available upon request.
- Photographs of the 25 finalists will be available a few days following the
Ed Dombroskas, Office of Tourism
Tammy Marzik, Office of the Secretary of the State 860-509-6269
Kathleen Goffa, MD&C, Inc. 203-624-4151, ext. 30