Labor Day weekend marked the grand opening of the 2019 George Montgomery/NRA Youth Wildlife Art Contest. Opened to first- through 12th-graders, including homeschoolers, the contest calls for illustrations of any wildlife legally hunted or trapped throughout North America. With $7,000 in prize money, the competition will be fierce.
"This is a great opportunity for budding young artists to receive national recognition and maybe even earn a little money for college," said Joe DeBergalis, executive director of General Operations. "If there's a student out there who enjoys drawing, painting or sketching animals or game birds then they should send us their work."
With hundreds of entries every year, the quality of submissions has been just as great as the variety.
"You never know what they're going to come up with," said DeBergalis. "We've even received pieces composed entirely of colored duct tape!"
The contest is divided into four categories based on grade level: Category I (1st – 3rd), Category II (4th – 6th), Category III (7th – 9th), Category IV (10th – 12th). Judges select first, second and third place entries in each category, which receive prizes of $750, $500 and $250, respectively. A Best In Show award, selected from among all entries across all categories, receives a $1,000 prize.
And while NRA membership is always appreciated, it is not required for entry.
First launched in 1987, the Youth Wildlife Art Contest allows these artists to explore their creative abilities while encouraging them to learn more about wildlife, hunting, and conservation. Just make sure your entries don't include endangered species or non-game animals such as bald eagles, yellow-legged frogs, or box turtles. While every entry is appreciated, anything that falls into the non-game arena is not eligible to win.
So break out the paint, the pencils, the crayons or markers and send us your work! As long as your entry has an October 31st postmark it's sure to find a place in front of the judges. Even those made out of duct tape.