State Fair Tree Graffiti Contest winners announced

Nebraska City News-Press

Nebraska State Fair invited the entire state to participate in a Tree Graffiti Contest this year. Cross Country Quilt Guild from Kearney, Neb. is the winner with their “Between the Statue of Liberty and the Golden Gate Bridge is a wonderful place to live...Nebraska! “entry.   

Nearly 30 entries were submitted in all.  First place, was won by Cross Country Quilt Guild. Members who graffitied their tree were: Stephanie Goodwin, Sharon Rood, Leslie Martin, Patricia Elliott, Lanna Bishop and Mary McGee. They will receive six concert tickets, & six gate admissions. Second place was a tie, won by Aurora Art Walk of Aurora, and Bickford Senior Living in Grand Island. Each entry will receive two concert and gate admission tickets.  Nancy McManis, of Louisville and last year’s winner, tied for third place with Central City Public Library, and Credit Management of Grand Island. Each of these entries will receive two gate admission tickets and two carnival wristbands.

Cross Country Quilt Guild explained their entry as, “Nothing is more Nebraska than football, corn, beef, Johnny Carson, Willa Cather, Henry Fonda, Runza, Kool Aid and yes, Spam started right here in Nebraska. Our display begins with the trees wrapped in a yarn flag, one tree is blue with stars and the other is wrapped in red and white stripes. The Statue of Liberty is outlined with white yarn and yellow yarn for her torch. Our corn stalks are wrapped with green yarn and the kernels of corn are yellow balls of yarn. Even the nest of straw for the yarn chicken eggs is made from yarn. We are a quilt group so all of our posters are quilted and then put on yarn frames crocheted with yarn. Our 1st prize ribbon is a 6 foot by 6 inch crocheted blue yarn. We had a lot of fun putting this together and hope you enjoy it.

In the non-profit division, we had many repeat competitors and several new participants. One of those new participants came away with first place honors!

Hall County Livestock Association / Fonner Park, (tree designed and decorated by Kay Kotulak), was this year’s winner, followed by:

2nd. place – Girls Scouts of NE (last year’s winner)

3rd. place – Operation Lifesaver & Mid-Plains Center

A complete list of placements is available at StateFair.org under “contests”.

State residents were asked to follow the lead of over 70 central Nebraska participants from last year’s inaugural event. Nebraskans “bombed a tree”, or as we like to call it now, tree graffiti, at their homes, businesses, churches or schools across the state.

About 60 entries were submitted here in Grand Island and statewide. Laura Hurley, director of sponsorships said, “I was enthusiastically surprised that so many people would put countless hours and effort into creating their version of tree graffiti. There were no two entries alike, everything was very original and extremely creative.  They made beautiful things happen for their neighbors and community to enjoy.”  

Complete results for the contest can be found on our website, statefair.org by searching under contests. Additional questions may be directed to: Lhurley@statefair.org. The benefits are to provide beauty, fun and community engagement across our great state.

“We are so grateful many participated and many more enjoyed the fruits of their creativity. Thank you for spreading a little more beauty in our great state,” mentioned Hurley.  The plans for a 2022 contest are in the works and will be announced next year.  

For more information on the state’s largest event, visit statefair.org.

2021 Cross Country Quilt Guild Entry