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Watertown, NY- May 15, 2014 – Today, WPBS-TV announced the winners from the annual PBS KIDS Writers Contest,, designed to promote the advancement of children’s literacy skills through hands-on, active learning.  The Contest empowers children in grades K-3 to celebrate creativity and build literacy skills by writing and illustrating their very own stories.
“WPBS-TV is committed to providing fun opportunities for the North Country area kids to express their creativity,” said Teri-Gene Conlin, Outreach Manager of WPBS-TV.  “The PBS KIDS Writers Contest helps the North Country children build valuable literacy skills for success in school and life.”

An Awards Ceremony was held at WPBS-TV’s Community Room, Thursday, May 15th, honoring the winners of this year’s Writers Contest, who were chosen from 111 entries.  The ceremony included each winner reading their stories to attending family and friends, along with receiving a prize pack that included a Leap From game, Highlights, tote and other small gifts.

This year’s winners are: 

1st place Kindergarten– Madyson Van Gorden/Millie’s Adventure, Waddington
2nd place Kindergarten– Alex Richards/The Scary Skull, Chase Mills

1st place Grade 1-Rachel Staples/Say Hello to Spring and Goodbye to Winter, Watertown
2nd place Grade 1-Rosamund Hunt/Guyana, Watertown
3rd place Grade 1-Ryann Erickson/The Adventures of Cat and Dog, Watertown 

1st place Grade 2-Preston Oatman/The Lion That Couldn’t Roar, Watertown
2nd place Grade 2-ThaJarie Gaskin/The Bunny That Had the Hiccups, Watertown
3rd place Grade 2-Hannah Wines/Chocolate Springs Fairy, Watertown

1st place Grade 3-Adelaide Taylor/Adelaide’s Big Adventure, Lorraine
2nd place Grade 3-Tanner Smith/The Biggest Fish, Waddington
3rd place Grade 3-Lane Ruddy/The Lucky Penny, Madrid

The first place winner in each grade level will then be entered into the national contest where a panel of esteemed judges will rank the top 12 entries.  National winners will be announced during the summer of 2014 and the winning stories will be featured on

The national winners will receive prizes courtesy of national prizing sponsor, LeapFrog®, makers of the LeapReader® Reading & Writing System. The contest is also made possible through national promotional support from Highlights for Children®. The PBS KIDS Writers Contest is produced by PBS and based on the Reading Rainbow® Young Writers and Illustrators Contest, a concept developed by WNED-TV, Buffalo.

WPBS-TV is a non-profit public television station serving approximately 650,000 households throughout Northern New York and Eastern Ontario. WPBS-TV’s mission is to educate, entertain and inform in order to enhance the lives of those it serves.