Admittedly, they say it’s a difficult task.
It’s never easy coming up with their top picks, but South Pasadena City Council members have selected the three winners in this year’s Festival Balloons’ poster contest.
Joe Payne, parade chair for the 4th of July event, revealed the first, second and third place finishers during the council’s regularly scheduled meeting last Wednesday at City Hall.
Fifth grade students from South Pasadena’s three public elementary schools and Holy Family School created posters around the 2019 Festival of Balloons’ theme of “To the Moon and Beyond – 50 Years of Exploring America’s Freedom.”
It marks the 50th anniversary of the first moon walk “and we fully expect our 5th graders, that generation, to take us back into space again,” said Payne, noting that the city’s 4th of July committee is pleased with the work of the students.
“We came up with that theme based on this year being the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 and the Moon Landing,” he explained. “Since we have been to the moon, we have continued to explore space, sending more probes to the moon and other planets. The desire to explore space is closely tied to the freedom the United States enjoys. So, we think we have a great theme this year.”
Payne announced the first place winner is Katelyn Kim, of Marengo, followed by second place finisher Naya Holden of Arroyo Vista and Aislinn Meza of Monterey Hills, taking third.
“We were really pleased with their artwork,” said Payne. “It was a great job by all the kids.”
The first, second and third place finishers will all ride in the Festival of Balloons Parade and be guests at South Pasadena High for the 9 p.m. fireworks show on the Fourth of July.
Later this month, Payne and his wife, Joan, will hang about 115 posters from students on poles up-and-down the parade route along Mission Street from Diamond Avenue to Garfield Park.
The three South Pasadena students are about to take a ride of their lifetime as they will roll down the city’s 4th of July parade in a classic car showing their winning entries from the 2019 Festival of Balloons’ poster contest.
Every year, the parade committee asks 5th graders from Arroyo Vista, Marengo, Monterey Hills elementary schools, and Holy Family School to submit posters.
Joan Payne, the Festival of Balloons’ committee poster chair, has nothing but praise for the young artists who showcase their work along the parade route year after year.
“The kids are so talented,” she said. “I think it shows great community spirit. It teaches the kids to involve themselves in our city.”