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Outdoor writing: Lake Cabin story wins 2016 contest

A story by Kate Kuntz, a home-schooled junior from Chattaroy, has been judged the best of 68 entries to win The Spokesman-Review’s 2016 Outdoor Writing Contest for high school students.

In “Lake Cabin Tour,” Kuntz guides readers on a tour of her family’s rustic cabin on the lake while using colorful description to paint images of the experience they enjoyed on summer days.

Runners-up in the 31st annual contest include:

  • Goat Crossing,” by Warden High School senior Ellie Thyssen, made a splash with judges by reliving a soggy moment during a family mountain trek with pack goats.
  • Cross Country,” a poem by Northwest Christian High School junior Madison Janke, explores the countryside and the spirit that urges girls to run.

Kuntz will receive $50 for first place. Each of the runners-up will get $30. The four finalists will be entered in the Outdoor Writers Association of America Norm Strung Youth Writing Awards contest, which is open to outdoor pieces written in 2016 by junior high or high school students.

National winners, who can earn up to $200, will be announced next spring.

In 30 years, 44 finalists from The Spokesman-Review contest have gone on to win national awards.

This year’s entries were judged by newspaper Outdoors editor Rich Landers. The winning contest entries have been illustrated since 1986 by Rockford artist Dale Hamilton, a Central Valley graduate.

The contest is limited to entrants from the newspaper’s circulation area. Details of the 2017 contest will be announced in September.

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