A story by Sydney Lyman, a junior at Mead High School, has been judged the best of 111 entries to win The Spokesman-Review’s 2017 Outdoor Writing Contest for high school students.
In “Taste of Flight” Lyman details the wide-eyed thrill of soaring for the first time in a hot-air balloon over Arches National Park. “ I could see all of the small pools of rainwater from the night before, peppering the park with deep blue freckles,” she writes.
Runners-up in the 32nd annual contest include:
“Buck Fever,” by OASIS Alternative School freshman Anna Pearsall, relates the symptoms and treatment for a novice bowhunter’s angst in a tree stand.
“Special Place,” by North Central High School freshman Cannon Barnett, invites readers to a girl’s soothing forest retreat.
“My Brother Wouldn’t Know,” by Coeur d’Alene High School sophomore Zoe Cox, laments in humorous verse how much her brother is missing outdoors because of his obsession with virtual reality.
Other writers whose entries made the final round of judging include Brenden Grimes and Abby Dallabetta of Lakeside High School; Lucy Nester, Lindsay Arnold and Taylar LaRue of Gonzaga Prep; Rose Melville of Sprague; Claire Liere of North Central; Emmy Judd of Lewis and Clark; Katherine Ward, Julia Poffenroth, Drew Ewert, Britney West and Anna Golan of Mead, and Avery Hughes, home-schooled from Newman Lake.
Lyman will receive $50 for first place. Each of the runners-up will get $35. The four finalists will be entered in the Outdoor Writers Association of America Norm Strung Youth Writing Awards contest, which is open to outdoor writing published in 2017 by junior high or high school students.
National winners, who can earn up to $200, will be announced next spring.
In 31 years, 45 finalists from The Spokesman- Review contest have gone on to win national awards.
This year’s entries were judged by Spokane outdoor writer Rich Landers.
The contest is limited to entrants from the newspaper’s circulation area. Details of the 2018 S-R contest will be announced in September.