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Illinois teenager takes First Place in Junior Duck Stamp Contest

Sixteen-year-old Ryan Kirby of Hamilton, Illinois, won first prize in the 1999 Junior Duck Stamp Conservation and Design Contest sponsored by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The contest was held in Washington, D.C.

Kirby’s painting "Autumn Calm" of a pair of wood ducks rendered in oil and colored pencil is the 1999-2000 Federal Junior Duck Stamp, which is sold by the Service’s Federal Duck Stamp Office to stamp collectors and conservationists.

Kirby, a student at Hamilton High School, placed fourth in last year’s Federal Junior Duck Stamp Contest, and he has won "Best of State" in the Illinois Junior Duck Stamp competition for the past three years. His painting was the only entry to receive a perfect score of 25 points in the final round of judging in both the state and national contests.

Second place in this year’s Junior Duck Stamp Contest went to Sara Stack, 18, of Maplewood, Minnesota, for her acrylic painting of lesser scaup. Stack is a student at North High School in North St. Paul, Minnesota.

Benjamin Carlson of West Burke, Vermont, took third place with his rendering of bufflehead on scratchboard. Carlson, 17, is a student at Lyndon Institute in Lyndon Center, Vermont.

Every state, as well as the District of Columbia, participates in the Junior Duck Stamp Conservation and Design Contest each year. Modeled after the Service’s Federal Duck Stamp art competition, the Junior Duck Stamp Design Contest is part of an innovative educational curriculum that teaches youngsters in grades K-12 about wetlands and waterfowl conservation.

Creating the Junior Duck Stamp design is a major part of the yearlong Junior Duck Stamp curriculum used by educators in their classrooms. Each state sends Junior Duck Stamp design entries to a designated point where they are judged by a group of people active in the local wildlife art or conservation community.

State "Best of Show" winning designs are sent to Washington, D.C., where a panel of five judges chooses three national winners. The judges for this year’s contest all are employees in the Fish and Wildlife Service’s Washington, D.C., headquarters office.

The top three Junior Duck Stamp Contest winners receive a free trip to Washington, D.C., along with their art teachers and one of their parents, the following November to be honored at the Federal Duck Stamp Contest. The first-place winner also receives a $2,500 scholarship award.

For more information on the Federal Junior Duck Stamp Conservation Program and Design Contest, contact Program Manager Margaret Wendy, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Federal Duck Stamp Office, 1849 C Street, NW, Room 2058, Washington, D.C. 20240; telephone: 202-208-4354.

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