Southeastern Wildlife Exposition is hosting the 2017-2018 Federal Junior Duck Stamp judging in Charleston, South Carolina. The public is invited to attend the judging at Charleston Music Hall on Friday, April 21. This is the 25th year for the Junior Duck Stamp program and the first time the federal judging has been held in Charleston.

“This is a big deal in the duck stamp world,” said Mary Roberts, SEWE Marketing Director and SC Junior Duck Stamp Coordinator. “SEWE and our partner SC Ducks Unlimited is thrilled to host the event in our hometown of Charleston. It’s a great opportunity to shed a light on this art program and its impact on conservation education.”

SEWE has been the state coordinator for South Carolina since 2011, when it assumed administration from SC Department of Natural Resources. The program is an extension of the Federal Duck Stamp program created by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. For the past 20-plus years, the judging has taken place in the Washington, D.C. area.

The Junior Duck Stamp art contest is a dynamic educational program that uses conservation and design principles to teach wetland habitat and waterfowl biology to children K-12. Each state holds its own contest where participants compete to create visually compelling and biologically accurate drawings or paintings of eligible North American waterfowl species.

SEWE held this year’s state JDS judging on January 23 where the top 100 winners were chosen. The SC “Best of Show” winner Oliva Wingo from Thomas Cario Middle School in Mount Pleasant will advance to the federal contest. Wingo’s winning entry will compete against “Best of Show” winners from all the U.S. states, Washington, D.C., and several territories at the federal judging on Friday, April 21 in Charleston.

“The winning artwork selected in Charleston will grace the 2017-2018 Junior Duck Stamp,” said Roberts, who is organizing the event with the help of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Charleston Music Hall. “The five-dollar purchase price of the stamp goes directly to funding the environmental education opportunities and recognition for the children who participate in the program, as well as awards for the top winners.”

The judging will take place at the Charleston Music Hall at 37 John Street on Friday, April 21. Admission is free and the event is open to the public. Doors open at 9:30 a.m., with judging starting at 10 a.m. There will be live painting and sculpting with SEWE artists, live animals, face painting, educational activities, and giveaways. The 2017-2018 Federal JDS winner will be announced at 12 p.m.


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