Hector Benavides and Amelia Bodell, both 8 years old, respectively took first and second place in the contest, which had “Life in the soil: Dig deeper” as its theme.
The contest, organized by the Huron County Soil and Water Conservation District, was open to all first- and second-graders in the county. Although students in 13 schools were invited to participate, Benavides and Bodell, the top two winners, are both in Laura Oeder’s second-grade class at Pleasant Elementary.
The district, which has held the contest for more than 20 years, partnered with Norwalk’s Walmart, which donated $1,000 for red maple seedlings that were given to the contest’s participants.
“We want to encourage kids to be involved,” said district representative Alisa Schaffer, who assisted the students with planting the tree.
The purpose of the contest was to keep young people mindful of conserving and sustaining the planet’s natural resources, she added.
Benavides received a first-place ribbon and a plaque at the base of the tree, commemorating his contest win. His poster will be featured in the State House in Columbus. In addition to receiving a second-place ribbon, Bodell won a $25 gift card to Books-A-Million.
Eight-year-old Grace Bova, from Bellevue Elementary School, took third place. She also received a $25 gift card to Books-A-Million with her ribbon.