By Lori Gottula
The General Federation of Women’s Clubs has been sponsoring an area student art contest in Falls City for 65 years now, and this year’s competition soared with entries. According to contest director, Rita Seid, the competition attracted a record number of 709 entries from seven area schools, K – 12. The previous record was just under 600. The schools that participated were: Falls City High School, FC Sacred Heart, Humboldt-TR-S, FC Middle School, South and North Schools, and the Kolbe Academy (home school).
Now in her seventh year as director of the contest, Seid has built the program into a GFWC-recognized powerhouse of student art work. The contest used to average around 200 entries. Obviously, it has grown substantially since she took over.
“I believe that the large increase in entries this year was directly due to the Falls City Public Schools’ decision to hire a full-time art teacher for the elementary schools,” Seid said. “The submission numbers from North and South Schools just exploded.”
The contest is sponsored by the GFWC, and held at the Falls City Library and Arts Center. On Wednesday evening, a reception was held for the students and their parents, so that everyone could see the entries, and the pieces submitted. Parents and students also wanted to see the works done by the winners!
Sarah Thiltges, a senior with the Kolbe Academy (a Catholic home-schoolingprogram), won “Best of Show” with her pencil drawing depicting pop star Harry Styles. That means that judges Pat Steinman and Diana Rieschick selected her submission as the best out of 709 entries.
The other artists in the high school age group who were named best of category in their divisions were: Madison Huppert, sophomore, FCSH, colored pencils/pastels/crayons; Lauren Parrish, sophomore, FCSH, drawing/pencil; Austin Cochran, junior, FC High, drawing/pen and ink; Brittany Webster, junior, FC High, oil/acrylic; Sara Wertenberger, sophomore, FCSH, watercolor/tempera; Tayten O’Brien, junior, FC High, 2D/mixed media; Greg Folsom, senior, FC High, 3D/mixed media; Halee Roseberry, junior, FC High, graphic design/2D design/computer-generated; Sara Wertenberger, sophomore, FCSH, print-making.
In the seventh and eighth grade divisions, Dillion Ebel, an eighth grader at FCMS, received the best of category award for his pencil drawing. Jayden Kreifels, a seventh grader at FCMS, submitted a pencil drawing that won best of category for the seventh grade.
The first place winners in the K – 6 divisions were: Kindergarten, Tanner Jackson, North; first grade, Ellery Vonderschmidt, FCSH; second grade, Kloie Berger, North; third grade, Kaitlynn Kirkendall, South; fourth grade, Jessica Jones, South; fifth grade, Gaby Niedfeldt, South; sixth grade, Ella Heineman, FCMS.
The rest of the winners are listed below. An asterisk (*) means that the designated submission will represent this area in the state competition sponsored by the National Federation of Women’s Clubs. That contest will be held during the NFWC’s state convention in Omaha on April 14-16. Seid will deliver the pieces that qualified for state.
Seid she would like to thank June Bowers and Esther Halbert for helping to hang the display, and Patty Kiekhafer for helping collect the artwork. She would also like to thank those who provided cookies and beverages for the reception, and those who donated prizes for the winners. Those donors were: Breezy Hill Café, Lori and Randy Gottula, Frontier Bank, Schulenberg Bakery, Ms. Beasley’s Dessert Shoppe, Lem’s Northvue Café, Stone Street Arts and Sonic Drive-In.
The art will continue to hang in the Stalder Gallery at the Library and Arts Center through March 17. Drop by during library hours to view the work done by our talented students. For more information, contact Seid at 402-245-7237.
Those who placed in each category are mentioned below, along with their grades and the schools that each represented. An asterisk denotes the winner as a state qualifier.
Pencil/Pastels/Crayons: Best of category, Madison Huppert*, 10, FCSH; First place, Jonny Jones*, 9, FC High; Second place, Abby Fiegener, 10, FCSH; Third place, Keith Salimo, 11, FCSH; Honorable Mentions, Randee Witt, 9, FCSH; Ciara Catlin, 9, FCSH; Austin Sells, 9, FCSH.
Drawing/Pencil: Best of Category, Lauren Parrish*, 10, FCSH; First place, Teresa Morehead*, 9, FCSH; Second place, Sarah Thiltges, 12, Kolbe Academy; Third place, Barbara Wilhide*, 11, FC High; Honorable mention: Ahren Ebel, 9, FCSH; Chloe Schock, 9, FCSH; Maggie Goltz, 12, FCSH; and Marina Haralabidis, 10, FCSH.
Drawing/Pen and Ink: Best of category, Austin Cochran*, 11, FC High; First place, Austin Cochran, 11, FC High; Second place, Louise Hamilton*, 12, FCSH; Third place, Emmet Kirkendall*, 10, FC High; Honorable mention: Ethan Beckner*, 9, FC High.
Oil/Acrylic: Best of category, Brittany Webster*, 11, FC High; First place, Jade Hill, 11, FCSH; Second place, Taylor Bachman, 11, FC High; Third place, Kayelee Mosiman*, 10, FC High; Honorable mention: Leslie Vitosh, 10, FC High; Haylee Vice, 10, FC High.
Watercolor/Tempera: Best of category, Sara Wertenberger*, 10, FCSH; First place, Taylor Bachman*, 11, FC High; Second place, Emily Gonnella*, 12, HTRS; Third place, Lauren Bierman, 12, FC High.
2D/Mixed Media: Best of category, Tayten O’Brien*, 11, FC High; First place, Bailey Gilkerson*, 11, FC High; Peyton Campbell, 11, FC High; Savannah Davis, 11, FC High; Honorable mention: Josie Nolte*, 11, FC High; Kayly Leafty*, 12, FC High. 3D/Mixed Media: Best of category, Greg Folsom*, 12, FCHS; First place, Avery Scott, 12, FC High; Second place, Greg Folsom, 12, FC High; Third place, Bailey Coonce*, 11, FCSH; Honorable mention: Thea Schulenberg, 11, FCSH.
Graphic Design/2DDesign/ Computer Generated: Best of category, Halee Roseberry*, 11, FC High; First place, Mercedes Koosier*, 9, FC High; Second place, Savannah Davis, 11, FC High; Third place, Jonny Jones, 9, FC High; Honorable mention: Jordyn Curtis, 9, FC High; Cece Coral, 9, FC High.
Print Making: Best of category, Sara Wertenberger*, 10, FCSH; First place, Katie Crofford*, 12, FC High; Second place, Tanner Cromer*, 9, FCSH; Third place, Tayler Ruskamp, 9, HTRS; Honorable mentions: Brookelynne Patnode, 9, FC High; Catie Cooper, 12, FCSH.
Eighth grade: Best of category, Dillon Ebel*, FCMS; First place, Trey Drake*, HTRS; Second place, Ian Mahs, HTRS; Third place, Paige Stamper*, FCSH; Honorable mention: Hannah Feighner*, FCMS; Trey McAfee, FCMS; Allyssa Mez, FCMS; Kailyn Frederick, FCMS.
Seventh grade: Best of category, Jayden Kreifels*, FCMS; First place, Lukas Butler*, FCMS; Second place, Paige McCartney*, FCMS; Third place, Zoe Ebel, FCMS; Honorable mention: Dylan Vice, FCMS; Brenna Leyden, FCMS.
Sixth grade: First place, Ella Heineman*, FCMS; Second place, Abigail Boatright, FCMS; Third place, Hunter Bauman, FCSH; Honorable mention: Taryn Coronado, FCMS.
Fifth grade: First place, Gaby Niedfeldt*, FC South; Second place, Brooke Simon, FC South, Third place, Caleb Hamilton, FC South, Honorable mention: Emily Thrash, FC South, Madison Jones, FCSH.
Fourth grade: First place, Jessica Jones*, South; Second place, Remington Frank, South; Third place, Hannah Berger, South; Honorable mention: Nevada West, South; Zane Ebel, FC South; Mikaela Hawley, South; Grace Morris, South.
Third grade: First place, Kaitlynn Kirkendall*, South; Second place, Robert Gilkerson, South; Third place, Jentry Lechtenberg, FCSH; Honorable mentions, Henry Rottinghaus, FCSH; Olivia Frederick, South; Brayden Hatchcock, South.
Second grade: First place; Kloie Berger*, North; Second place, Brock Niedfeldt, North; Third place, Ella Glathar, North; Honorable mention: Brooklyn Denton, North; Brock Niedfeldt, North; Kyler Sipple, FCSH; Chaelee Schmidt, FCSH.
First grade: First place, Ellery Vonderschmidt*, FCSH; Second place, Harley Sutton, North; Third place, Gabi Young, North; Honorable mention: Hallie Jones, FCSH.
Kindergarten: First place, Tanner Jackson*, North, Second place, Isabella Johansen, North; Third place, Reagan McNeely, North; Honorable mention: Madalynn Hawley, North; Emma Frederick, North; Farrah Wissler, North.