03 October 2014

Nov. 1 Deadlines for VFW's Youth Writing Competitions

My youthful interests in three trophies: In addition to the
VFW's "Tall Corn Radio Award" (really, the "Voice of Democracy")
are others for marksmanship and ... advertising sales?!
I've long since gotten rid of a lot of trophies from my high-school days and earlier, but one that I've kept is what I jokingly call the Veterans of Foreign Wars' "Tall Corn Radio Award."

(Remember newscaster Les Nessman on the late-1970s TV sitcom "WKRP in Cincinnati," who was winner of the coveted Silver Sow, Buckeye Newshawk, and Copper Cob awards? He and I share more than a few things in common.)

Actually, it's a golden version of a old-school radio microphone, a symbol of the organization's annual "Voice of Democracy" audio-essay competition. And one of my prized possessions.

While I've lost the audiotape of my winning entry—I think it was recorded on a reel-to-reel tape—I've never misplaced the big lesson-learned from my participation in the VFW event: That patriotism is best shared with others.

Bottom line: I heartily recommend participation in the VFW's writing and audio-essay programs to interested high-schoolers, particularly those who are enjoy public speaking and journalism.

The "Patriot's Pen" essay-writing competition is open to students grades 6 through 8. This year's theme is "Why I Appreciate America’s Veterans." The national winner will receive a $5,000 award. Deadline is Nov. 1, 2014. Click here for more details.

The "Voice of Democracy" audio-essay competition is open to students grades 9 through 12. This year's theme is "Why Veterans are Important to our Nation’s History and Future." Deadline is also Nov. 1, 2014. Click here for more details.

For more information, as well as entry forms, contact your local participating VFW post.

Students should also submit entries (along with a completed entry form) to their participating local VFW post. Click here for a VFW post locator.

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