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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Creative deadication: 2023 Halloween coloring contest was frightfully impressive

Talk about a gourd time.

The judges from The Spokesman-Review newsroom once again were impressed with another round of Halloween contest submissions from area kids.

Each October, The S-R prints its pumpkin coloring page for children to submit creative spooky and boo-tiful works of art in three age groups: 0-4, 5-8 and 9-12. This year was no exception, as the judges struggled to select nine winners out of the 121 entries.

Ages 0-4

In the youngest age group, hailing from Spokane, 2-year-old Ryker McConnell’s showstopper piece of moon and petals was colorful and enticing to the judges’ eyes. The various stroke widths and hues creatively came together to craft a bright background for the black crescent moon to stand out.

Florence Moyer, 2, of Spokane, skillfully blended orange and green to capture the fall colors; the judges enjoyed the abstract allusion to vines Florence’s finger-painting technique created.

And also from Spokane, 4-year-old Silas Allgood-Kelly’s crayon masterpiece was colorful and abstract. The texture from the medium set apart Silas’ artwork from the others. The zigzag nature of the young artist’s work revealed the essence of a playful personality, and the judges were especially delighted by the 4-year-old’s penmanship.

Ages 5-8

Five-year-old Roman Renggli, of Spokane Valley, managed to trick one judge with a black spider crafted from hand prints. She jumped onto a chair and asked someone else to squish it. Roman sure had her fooled. Thankfully, the googly eyes were cartoonish enough that the judges eventually realized the eight-legged creepy crawler wasn’t real. Phew!

Also in the ages 5-8 group, Spokane’s Madelyn Murphy, 8, went a more traditional route – but with a twist. She colored a classic-style pumpkin with triangular eyes and nose, and sharp monsterlike teeth. The ghost peeking from behind the pumpkin was a nice touch, and the patches sold the judges on the pumpkin “patch” pun.

The final winner for this group goes to Kien Jenkin, 5, of Spokane Valley. Kien’s pumpkin was simple, but the texture of the tissue paper and sparkly stem caught the judges attention, and in particular, the judges appreciated the effort and patience that comes with gluing all those pieces of tissue paper to the page.

Ages 9-12

Lauren Brazil, 11, of Spokane, created a familiar scene. Framed inside a pumpkin blacked out like the night was a pumpkin-shaped bucket reminiscent of those plastic buckets kids carry trick-or-treating. Not only was the scene believable, but the artwork depicted realistic candy bars that looked good enough to eat.

Twelve-year-old Naomi Alf, of Colbert, also went a familiar route. The judges were bewitched by a playful cat so well drawn the judges thought Naomi used a stencil. Stencil or not, the bright glow appearing to come from within the carved pumpkin truly felt as if it were alight.

“Adorbs” was the exact word one judge used when describing Spokane’s Roaa El Hassadi’s artwork. The 9-year-old’s use of differing vertical colors captured the various natural shades that appear in pumpkins. Another judge said she wanted to “boop” the nose; the feline gourd was too cute to turn away.

An awesome job to everyone who submitted, and creep being creative. The newsroom staff looks forward to seeing more from such talented kids.

Winners received a gift certificate to Mobius Discovery Center. Entries are on display at Mobius, 331 N. Post St.