Ag is Cool winners announced

Governor John R. Kasich and Ohio Department of Agriculture Director David T. Daniels announced the winners for the 2014 “Agriculture is Cool” visual arts contest. Ohio school children enrolled in school or home schooled during the 2013-2014 academic year shared their personal interpretation of why Ohio agriculture is “cool” for their chance to win tickets to the Ohio State Fair.

Entries, which included an original video, photographs, drawings, and paintings, were judged in four different age categories: K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12. Eleven entries were selected as winners in their respective categories.

K-2 Drawing: Aleah Brooker, Lower Salem, Washington County, age 8

K-2 Painting: Matthew Konecny, Perrysburg, Wood County, age 6

Best in Show: Brandon Barr, Xenia, Greene County, age 11

Director’s Choice: Mary Clare Konecny, Bowling Green, Wood County, age 9

3-5 Drawing: Macy Bachtel, Canal Fulton, Stark County, age 11

3-5 Painting: Mary Thomas, Fredericktown, Morrow County, age 11

3-5 Photograph: Jessie Abke, Sidney, Shelby County, age 10

3-5 Video: Matthew Harris, Powell, Franklin County, age 11

6-8 Painting: Justin Thomas, Fredericktown, Morrow County, age 13

6-8 Photograph: Zachary Breece, Alvada, Hancock County, age 12

9-12 Photograph: Sydney Black, Ashville, Pickaway County, age 16

The winners were honored by Governor Kasich, Ohio Agriculture Director Daniels and Ohio State Fair Manager Virgil Strickler at a ceremony at the Ohio State Fairgrounds. During the ceremony, Brandon Barr of Xenia was announced as the “Best in Show” winner, and Mary Clare Konecny of Bowling Green was declared the “Director’s Choice” winner.

“The Ag is Cool program continues to grow and involve more young people in learning about and promoting agriculture,” said Director Daniels. “I am proud to recognize all 11 of our youth winners for taking advantage of this opportunity and for helping us educate about the state’s number 1 industry.”

This year marks the fourth year of the contest, and the fourth year of the educational program that is featured at the Ohio State Fair, July 23-Aug. 3. Additional “Ag is Cool!” education programs can be found this year at several county fairs including: Darke, Franklin, Mahoning and Summit Counties.

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