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Local student vies for international prize

Poster by Grade 6 student Eric Montpetit turning heads in annual Lions contest

By: Scott Hayes

  |  Posted: Wednesday, Dec 25, 2013 06:00 am

PEACE POSTER – This poster by local student Eric Montpetit is in the running for an international prize in the annual Lions Peace Poster contest.
PEACE POSTER – This poster by local student Eric Montpetit is in the running for an international prize in the annual Lions Peace Poster contest.
KELLY MONTPETIT/Supplied photo

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The Lions Peace Poster contest has a local contender with his young eyes on a big international prize.

Eric Montpetit, a Grade 6 student at Neil M. Ross Catholic Elementary School, found out on Friday that his entry into this year’s contest won the multiple district level competition, which means it’s one of 24 from more than 100 countries around the world that will be judged in early 2014 to be the best.

“He’s so excited!” exclaimed his mother, Kelly. “He was just hoping to win here at the school. That was his big goal. He was completely shocked. He didn’t think he’d win past the school level.”

The contest is an initiative of Lions Club International, the largest service organization in the world with clubs in more than 200 countries. Children from 11 to 13 years of age can submit their artistic expressions of what peace means to them based on a different theme each year. There are hundreds of thousands of entries each year.

Using the theme “technology is our future,” Montpetit created a poster of a hand holding a cellphone, with a map of the globe showing on the screen. It highlights all of the countries’ flags with the symbol for peace overlaid atop the blue circle. Doves fly off in the background.

For Montpetit the excitement first started last month when he won for his school at the local level, pitting his work against other students in grades 6 through 8.

His poster then went on to compete against 40 others at the district level during the last week of November. That win garnered him a $100 prize as well as the People’s Choice Award.

Those two prizes, plus a gift from the St. Albert Host Lions Club were presented to him Friday during a special school assembly by Claude Carignan, the club’s representative and the chairman of the local peace poster campaign.

From the district level, his poster then went on to win at the multiple district level, an area that includes all of Alberta and Montana. That win earned him a prize of $300 and entry into the international competition.

If he wins, he’ll receive a grand prize worth $1,000 and a trip to the United Nations in New York. The 23 others in the competition will be designated Merit Award winners and receive $500 prizes each.

That determination will likely be made in mid to late February.

Carignan added that there have been a few St. Albert students make it at the multiple district level in the last several years.

“It’s a good indicator of the talent we have locally,” he said. “We definitely wish him luck.”

All of the local posters are currently on display at the Arden Theatre through to the end of December. For January, they move to the children’s library at the St. Albert Public Library.


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