By Rob Potter
MONTICELLO May 1, 2001 The colorful posters on display Friday afternoon at the Sullivan County Government Center carried a powerful message.
Although they featured drawings of people performing a range of activities, the posters had a common theme. That theme was Its Really Cool to be Drug and Alcohol Free!
As a sizeable crowd of proud parents, community members and county dignitaries looked on, the youngsters who created those posters were honored as the winners of the 7th Annual Countywide Alcohol & Drug Abuse Poster Contest.
Sponsored by the Recovery Center and the Sullivan County Cares Coalition, the contest allows students from schools around Sullivan County to artistically show their peers the myriad of possibilities they can achieve while remaining drug and alcohol free. (Co-sponsors for the contest included Anderman Oil, Inc., Klugman Associates, Inc., The Prasad Project, Sullivan County Public Health Nursing and Sullivan County Stop DWI. Contest donors were Family Footcare Group, LLP, The First National Bank of Jeffersonville, Joan Graham and Kristt Office Equipment Co.)
In our 2001 contest, we had about double the amount of participation as compared to past years, said Susan Long of the Recovery Center. Close to 1,100 students participated in this years contest. And thats wonderful for Sullivan County.
Long also served as one of the eight judges for the event. The other judges were Francoise Collet, Lewis Klugman, Dr. Edwin Kurlander, Nidia Minniefield, Gail Rowley, Jeffrey Skaar and Louis Velasco.
The grand prize award winners were Douglas Haugen for the English language poster and Autumn Darder for the Spanish language category. Haugens poster featured kids enjoying a roller coaster ride, while Darders pictured a horse and rider at an equestrian event.
I was really surprised, said Haugen, who won an honorable mention award in a previous poster contest.
Haugen, a 10th grade student at Sullivan West/Delaware Valley, added that the message of being drug and alcohol free is important to students.
Theyll see that message if they take the time to look at it, he said of his poster.
Darder, an eighth-grader at SW/DV, was also happy to have her poster judged as the best.
It feels good, Darder said. I worked hard on it.
Like Haugen, Darder felt that the posters will help students understand that there are numerous ways to enjoy life without using drugs and alcohol.
Haugen, Darder, the age group winners and each of the honorable mention winners received certificates from Congressman Benjamin Gilman and Assemblyman Jacob Gunther III. During the ceremony, Sullivan County Legislature Chairman Raymond Rusty Pomeroy II proclaimed April 2001 as Alcohol Awareness Month in Sullivan County.
The age group winners included:
Grades 1-3: 1st Place Aurora Boyes, Tri-Valley Elementary School; 2nd Place Julianne Grech, George Ross Mackenzie School; 3rd Place Marisa Mansueto, Emma C. Chase School.
Grades 4-6: 1st Place Paulina Renggli, Mackenzie Elementary; 2nd Place Janette Geoghan, Mackenzie Elementary; 3rd Place Jessica Pitz, Sullivan West/Narrowsburg.
Grades 7-9: 1st Place Sarah Halprin, Fallsburg Central School; 2nd Place Erika Roosa, Fallsburg; 3rd Place Amanda DeGroat, Fallsburg.
Grades 10-12: 1st Place Kathy Rodgers, Sullivan West/DV; 2nd Place Kate Humleker, SW/DV; 3rd Place Tyler Rake, SW/DV.
Honorable Mention awards were presented to students in each of the categories. They included:
Grades 1-3: Gregory Swarthout, Tri-Valley; Matthew Cavanagh, Tri-Valley; Gwendolyn Durma, Chase School; Joy Leon, Tri-Valley; Paxten Sanders, George L. Cooke School; Tyler TerBush, Tri-Valley; Lisa Ellen Dymond, Tri-Valley; Bryan Henry, Mackenzie Elementary; Hannah Powers, Mackenzie Elementary and Susan Tappan, Chase School.
Grades 4-6: Samantha Hyzer, Benjamin Cosor Elementary School; Bryanna Kolja, Cosor Elementary; Gabrielle Komatz, Cornelius L. Duggan School; Ray Leybovich, Cosor Elementary; Kimberly Murran, Chase School; Alexia Ruffino, Cosor Elementary; Alexis Russell, Duggan School; Marcio Castellanos, Mackenzie School; Lucas Finley, Light & Life Christian School; and Jesse Morse, SW/Narrowsburg.
Grades 7-9: York Illing, Tri-Valley; Jenna DiCostanzo, SW/DV; John Duda, Fallsburg; Rachel Feller, Fallsburg; Andres Freire, Fallsburg; Julie Keller, SW/DV; Jaime Klemm, SW/DV; Shaina McKenny, Fallsburg; Jennifer Morales, Fallsburg; Zack Simmons, Tri-Valley Home School; Marie Summa, Fallsburg; Lauren Mastandrea, SW/DV; and Matthew Pavloff, Fallsburg.
Grades 10-12 (all of whom are students at Sullivan West/Delaware Valley): Mike Bernhardt, Morgan Crawson, Jessica Fraser, Louis Hess, Matt Karkos, Martina Mannigel, Margaret Norden, Calley Sander, Dan Segar and Karen Terry.