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April 14, 2008

Young Grafton Artist Earns Top State Honors in Junior Duck Stamp Contest

CONCORD, N.H. - Carole Platka, age 18, of Grafton, has taken top honors among young New Hampshire artists in the 2008 Federal Junior Duck Stamp Conservation and Design Contest.   Platka's colored-pencil drawing of a mallard was chosen from among 159 entries as New Hampshire's State Best of Show in the Federal Junior Duck Stamp Contest.  New Hampshire's portion of the contest was coordinated by the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department. 

The young artist, a home-school student, will be New Hampshire's contestant in the 2008 National Junior Duck Stamp Contest held on April 17 at the San Diego Zoo.  Platka wrote the following conservation message to accompany her artwork: "We only have a short time on this earth so while we're here we need to do our part to take care of it!"

"Carole has been entering her artwork in the New Hampshire contest since the fifth grade.  Her hard work seems to have paid off.  It's a great work of art," said Victor Young, a wildlife artist and publications designer for the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department and the state's Junior Duck Stamp Contest coordinator.  

New Hampshire's first place winners for their age groups this year were:

  • Grades K-3: Jacob Belanger, age 8, a student of the Universal School of Life in Colebrook; Emily Heidler, age 9, of Pen & Palette Art Studio in Hampstead; and Tate Pinyochon, age 9, a student of Pen & Palette Art Studio in Hampstead.
  • Grades 4-6:  Kate Blackwell, age 10, a student of the Seacoast Charter School in Exeter; Quinn Morrissette, age 11, a student of Birchwood Studio in Shelburne; and Elizabeth Skerry, age 13, a student of Pen & Palette Art Studio in Hampstead.
  • Grades 7-9:  Alexandra Aldrich, age 12, a student of Birchwood Studio in Shelburne; Taylor Henry, age 13, of Hanover; and Michaella Wiss, age 13, of Weare.
  • Grades 10-12:  Carole Platka, age 18, of Hope Christian Home School in Grafton; Lorraine Hu, age 15, of Westcraft Studio in Lee.

A display of the winning artwork will open at the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department headquarters at 11 Hazen Drive in Concord during Discover WILD New Hampshire Day on Saturday, April 26, and will remain on display through May 9, 2008. 

View New Hampshire's first-place winning entries - CLICK HERE.

View Best-of-show winning entries for each of the 50 states - CLICK HERE.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service initiated the Federal Junior Duck Stamp program in 1994 to showcase the talents of the nation's young artists while teaching youngsters about the value of wetlands and waterfowl conservation.  The contest creates an opportunity for teachers to connect conservation issues with artistic expression.

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