Wendell Saxon

The contest was spearheaded by District 2 BOE member Wendell Saxon. File

Those hoping to get a glimpse of the black history projects completed by Elmore County Schools students will have a chance to do so on Saturday.

At the beginning of February, which is recognized as Black History Month, Elmore County Schools Board of Education member Wendell Saxon invited students to take part in a black history project contest as a way to learn more about the contributions of African Americans. 

The winning poster boards and essays will be on display at Wetumpka's Museum of Black History on Saturday, March 13, from noon to 4 p.m. The public is invited to attend.

The winners will also be presented at the Elmore County Board of Education's meeting at Wetumpka High School on Tuesday, March 16, at 4:30 p.m.

The contest was for third through 12th grade students. Depending on grade level, the students completed a poster board display or wrote an essay about an African American hero of the past or present.

Third through fifth graders created a poster board about an African American hero of the past or present while sixth through 12th graders were asked to write short essays ranging in length from a minimum of 300 words to 500 words depending on grade level. 

Sixth through eighth graders wrote essays answering the question, “Who would you pick as a role model and why?” The essay topic for ninth through 12th graders focused on how the contributions of African Americans have impacted their lives.

Martin L. King Jr. and Rosa Parks are the only two people students were prohibited from selecting.

"I really wanted students to do some research and find people they didn't previously know about, or maybe it's someone that they've heard of and want to learn more about," Saxon said. "This contest didn't supersede any plans at individual schools. This is something I proposed as the District 2 board member and my fellow board members fully supported this project." 

A diverse group of residents from throughout the county observed and judged the entries, Saxon said. First, second and third place overall winners will be named in three categories: third through fifth grade, sixth through eighth grade and ninth through 12th grade.

The Museum of Black History is located at 202 Lancaster Street in Wetumpka.