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Arts & Culture

Annual National Park Service Art Contest Hopes to Inspire Youth

2021-F-11-homeschool-GraceBennett-butterfly_weed-Butterfly Weeds-Best_OVERALL.jpg
National Park Service
Butterfly Weed © Grace Bennett, 11th grade, home school, Fayette County. 2021 Appalachian Spring Wildflower Art Contest – Best in Show.

The National Parks Service is accepting artwork that celebrates southern West Virginia’s diverse ecology. It’s part of the annual Youth Arts in the Parks project meant to raise awareness of Appalachia’s natural diversity and parks.

In addition to the classic Wildflower Art category, participants can enter the Digital Art Critter Challenge. The digital category developed from the pandemic after more kids were learning from home.

The contest’s Critter Challenge image should be created with a computer-based digital art creation program. Students should select from a provided species checklist for both the handmade and digital categories.

Submissions will be accepted online through February 2. The contest is for students in kindergarten through 12th grade from Fayette, Nicholas, Raleigh and Summers counties -- counties that include National Park Service property.

The National Park Service hopes the contest will help local students to connect with nature. Students can enter independently or through their school.

Judges will select the best entries to display online and at Tamarack in Beckley as part of the Spring Nature Fling in 2022. Other festivities for the spring event will include guided hikes, talks, and arts programs about nature outdoors and online.

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