Students from Grayson County High School presented their projects to judges on Sunday April 23rd. This was the second part of the LandFair competition sponsored by Grayson LandCare. After judging was completed, the public was invited to view the presentations and then attend the awards ceremony.
Hiley Boyer won the $1000 first prize with her project “Grayson Highlands School Garden”. Zack Wingate placed second with his project “Community Workspace”. Zack received $500. This was his third year entering the competition and has previously been awarded first place in 2022, and second place and People’s Choice in 2021. Both are 11th graders.
Ms Boyer is in Ms Alice Cox’s livestock class. Ms Cox encouraged all her students to enter but Hiley was the only one to submit a project. Hiley chose to use a poster to illustrate her project and complement the oral presentation. She grew up in Grayson County on her family’s farm. They have a cow calf operation. This led to her interest in agriculture and desire to help others be more aware of the important role farmers play in our economy and everyday lives. She hoped her project would be a fun way to illustrate this point to elementary school children. We all eat 3 times a day and not many people are completely self-sufficient. “Food does not just show up at the grocery store. There’s a farmer working hard to raise or grow all that food” she said. Her goal for the garden project was three-fold. “Fruits and vegetables are an important and nutritious part of our diets. The garden would also allow students to see all the hard work it takes to grow food. Another reason is working in the garden would help them learn to interact with others and learn social skills.” Ms Boyer hopes to be a large animal veterinarian and return after college to live and work in Grayson County.
Zack entered the competition without direct teacher input. He felt confident about entering given his past successes and chose to submit a video with his oral presentation. Wingate also grew up in Grayson County. “Living in a rural area has instilled in me a small scale, community-based viewpoint. The Community Workspace project would allow citizens of the community to share their ideas, skills and talents with those around them. The public could teach or take classes and it would also provide a platform for older generations to share their knowledge before those skills are lost. I enjoy participating in activities that better my community.” he said. Zack recently received a gold medal at the FCCLA Leadership Conference in Virginia Beach. He hopes to study mechanical engineering in college and also plans to return to Grayson County to live and work.
Congratulations Hiley and Zack!