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On Tuesday several volunteers with PARC Protect American River Canyons invited winners from the 2013 High School Essay Contest to gather at the confluence to receive their awards. The top 3 winners all came from Placer High School.
1st Place, $500: Kellyn McDonald, Placer HS
2nd place, $250: Garrett Michael Jordan, Placer HS
3rd place, $250: Toby Kugar Qualls, Placer HS
The students wrote inspiring essays on the question:
“What do the American River and its canyons mean to me and my community, and what should be done to protect them for future generations.”
Toby Qualls the 3rd place winner is also a long distance runner and writer and wrote about running in the canyon.
The students shared their family and personal connections to the River Canyons, which often included hiking, rafting, jogging or fishing experiences. They explained how the canyons are important to our local community and economy, and offered suggestions for protecting the canyons for future generations. Their ideas included promoting river stewardship education of youth, such as training Youth River Ambassadors, and obtaining Wild and Scenic Protection for the Canyons.