WoodmenLife Celebrates Patriotism With Our Chalk Challenge Winners

Aug 31, 20218/31/2021

Family

Even a pandemic couldn’t stop WoodmenLife’s commitment to patriotism. After all, we’ve been making a difference in hometowns across America and honoring our country since 1890. We may have been unable to organize and host activities where people could share their American pride together, but we found a solution: The WoodmenLife Patriotic Chalk Challenge.

For a second year, people from across the country celebrated Independence Day by creating original, America-themed artwork with chalk, paint, markers, or another medium. Chalk it up to patriotism, because more than 50 pieces of artwork were submitted via Facebook, and thousands of Facebook voters sent in their selections for the best creations.

The three winners were announced in early July. Be sure to check out this video of all the entries.

A Triple Shot of Patriotism

To make things even sweeter for the winners, they got to split their cash prizes with their favorite 501(c)(3) charity:

  • First Place — Tasha Hart of Jackson, TN — shared $1,000 with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, TN, the famous facility that treats pediatric cancer and other life-threatening pediatric diseases
  • Second Place — Amber Faulk of Deep Run, NC — shared $600 with Pink Hill Elementary School in Pink Hill, NC, home to more than 450 students from kindergarten through fifth grade
  • Third Place — Karleigh Tucker of Taylorsville, GA — shared $400 with Footprints on the Heart in Kingston, GA, which provides in-person support to families who have suffered the loss of a baby in the first two years of life

“WoodmenLife’s Patriotic Chalk Challenge is a fun way to share patriotic pride across the country, especially leading into the 4th of July holiday,” said Robby Molony, Vice President, Fraternal. “This contest lets participants show off their talents while giving back to causes important to them.”

Tops in Patriotism

First-place winner Tasha Hart created her artwork with the help of Honest, her son. They rendered a soaring eagle with spread wings colored to resemble the flag. Entitled “O Say Can You See,” the eagle soared above a row of 13 stars that represent the original colonies, and it was surrounded by lyrics from the “Star Spangled Banner.”

They took their tribute to the USA a step farther by composing it in Liberty Park, a local greenspace in Jackson.

The eagle is about seven feet from wingtip to wingtip, and the piece took more than three hours to make, Hart commented.

“Over 140 pieces of chalk were bought to make this happen,” she said.

Hart took to Facebook during and after the contest to talk about what the WoodmenLife Patriotic Chalk Challenge meant to her.

“You all have NO idea how much your comments, votes and messages have blessed my son, Honest, and I,” she posted in late June. “The experience has been the true prize.”

When she won, Hart posted, “Our half of the charity portion of the prize is going to St. Jude in Memphis, TN! Again, thank you all for helping us make that contribution while honoring our loved ones and friends who have and still serve! God Bless the USA!”

Patriotism on Display

“Leah Loves America and Her School”

Leah Faulk, the daughter of second-place winner Amber Faulk, was the centerpiece of the creation she helped draw. In “Leah Loves America and Her School,” she held a miniature flag and was flanked by a heart and a fireworks explosion. She was thrilled to give $300 to her school to help fund an art shelter and art supplies.

Pink Hill Elementary’s website took notice, thanking Leah for the donation and congratulating her for winning second place. The post also thanked everyone who voted in the contest.

“Eagle”

Karleigh Tucker’s third-place “Eagle” showcased the American symbol flying above a mountain range at sunset.

Highlights among the other entries include:

  • “Lady Liberty, Symbol of Freedom,” from Macon, GA, which features a little girl with a hand over her heart lying on the pavement with a Statue of Liberty crown drawn around her
  • “Butterfly of Freedom,” from Lancaster, SC, which centers on a red-white-and-blue clothed baby with patriotic wings
  • “American,” from Wilson, OK, which focuses on a vintage pickup in a field
  • “Happy Independence Day,” which is drawn in artful script around an artfully depicted bomb pop

Chalk it Up to Patriotism

The creativity of our neighbors from across the land warmed our hearts and helped bring us closer through this shared commitment to family, community and country. The contest once again showed WoodmenLife what we’ve long known — celebrating America is a unifying force.

We’ve donated more than 3.5 million flags to organizations throughout the country, and we’re always looking for ways to join others in supporting and honoring our Veterans and First Responders. Even when outside forces kept us from joining in person to do these things, we worked hard to make sure all of us could still celebrate together.

To keep up with our patriotic activities, visit WoodmenLife.org/Extras/Patriotism and follow us at Facebook.com/WoodmenLife.

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