Anessa DeMers, an Elk River High School junior, took first place both locally and at district, and will soon find out how she fared at the state level competition at the V.F.W. 109th annual Midwinter Grand Banquet to be held at the Minneapolis Marriott on Jan. 21.
“We think she has a real good shot at winning,” said Melody Schyrock, president of the Elk River-Rogers Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 5518 Ladies Auxiliary.
The essay topic this year is “Is There Pride in Serving in Our Military?”
Cara Fromm, also an Elk River High School junior, placed second in both the local and regional contests as well.
Will Strei took third in the local contest, and Emma Hohlen and Fanaka Ndege received honorable mentions.
“It is a great honor to have a local student move on to the state level of this prestigious audio essay competition — not to mention having two students place in the district,” Schyrock said.
Should DeMers’ essay win the state competition, she will win an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C.
In addition, to the Voice of Democracy program, the Veterans of Foreign Wars and its Ladies Auxiliary also host several other Youth Americanism programs including the Patriot’s Pen Essay Competition for sixth–eighth-grade students (also a national essay contest) as well as other statewide youth contests for K–sixth grade. Local awards for these contests were given out this past week at the Elk River American Legion. These winners will be announced in an upcoming edition of the Star News.