POLK COUNTY — The Polk County Land & Water Resources Department congratulates all of the winners of its 2023 speech and poster contests. These contests are for all school age students within Polk County to create posters and speeches with a conservation theme. Winners move onto an area contest, and winners of the area contests compete at the state level.

“We had good participation with several schools, 4-H’s and grade levels participating,” said Nicole Schmid, from Land & Water Resources. “The theme this year was “One Water”, and all the posters were excellent with good conservation messages.”

Gracie Stepnowski—a student at Unity School and member of the South Milltown 4-H Club—participated in the 2023 Land & Water annual speech contest. Her speech, titled "How the Environment Can Affect my Best Friend Roudy, My Horse", took 1st place at the local level (Polk County) and then moved on to the Northwest Area Contest (Hayward), where she took second place.

For the winners of the poster contest, first place in the K-1st grade category went to Arianna Lee (Amery), second place went to Lilly Osumi (Luck). For 2-3rd grade, first place went to Jasper Erickson (Unity). 4-6th grade: first place went to Hunter Olson (Unity); 7-9th grade: first place went to Emma Stepnowski (Unity); and 10-12th grade: first place went to Alana Penzkover (Unity), second place went to Madison Anderson (Unity), and third place went Cade Schwegman (Unity). Unity’s Jenna Babcock and Lily Tourville also participated.

The first-place winners in each age class received $15.00, second place received $10.00, and third place received $5.00. All students with a poster entry received a participation certificate. The first-place winners went on to the Northwest Area Contest which was held on February 3rd, where Arianna and Alana’s poster both placed second in their age class.

Last Update: Feb 20, 2023 7:39 am CST

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