Bright smiles filled the room Thursday inside the Boys & Girls Club at Woody Hall, as more than a dozen students were recognized for the winning posters they entered in the state AMVETS Americanism and AMVETS Against Drug and Alcohol Abuse contests.
About 60 Boys & Girls Club members from Killeen and Copperas Cove school districts participated in the contests sponsored by AMVETS Post 91. The posters were judged locally before winners competed at the state level, Commander David McClure said.
“We judged it locally then we took it to the state meeting in Tyler earlier this month,” he said. “They were judged and awarded first, second and third place.”
Students were awarded gift certificates totaling more than $2,000. First-place winners are entered in the national competition this summer, where they can win more awards and scholarships, McClure said.
The contests were firsts for many, including Willow Springs Elementary student Gavin Williams, 10. He took second place in his grade level in both contests.
“I drew what would happen in the world if we didn’t have a president,” he said. “If you don’t vote and there were no president, then the world would go crazy and no one would be able to control it.”
Gavin also created a poster on drug prevention.
Zoe Chevalier, 10, a Timber Ridge Elementary student, took home first place in the drug awareness contest and third place in the Americanism contest in the fourth grade division.
“I talked about why it’s important to vote,” she said. “I said if there were no president there would be violence everywhere.”
In weeks leading up to the contests, the Boys & Girls Clubs taught students about patriotism, voting and the dangers of drugs, said Tammy Clark, Woody Hall program director.
“I was very surprised how many winners we had throughout our organization, and I’m excited to see how they do at the national level.”