High school students showed up in droves for this year's "Art of Recycling" exhibition.
"It's one of the biggest shows we've ever had," said Marj Golub, director of the Pasco Arts Council, which sponsors the contest with the Pasco County School Board, Pasco County Utilities and Pasco County Public Services.
Golub said 155 students submitted 134 pieces of art from schools throughout Pasco County. Thirteen prizes totaling $2,200 were awarded. In March, one graduating senior who entered the contest and plans to continue his or her education in the arts or environmental science will receive a $1,000 scholarship through the Pasco Schools Education Foundation.
Golub said she was particularly impressed with this year's first-place winner, Sydney Bloomfield. Her piece, Environmental Guardian, was a dragon made out of sheet metal that she had welded together.
"It's really phenomenal," Golub said. "Unfortunately, it's not for sale."
Still, you can see that piece and others through Feb. 23 in the lobby of the West Pasco Government Center on Little Road in New Port Richey. On Feb. 27, some of the pieces will be moved to a special invitational exhibit at the Land O'Lakes District Office, 7227 Land O'Lakes Blvd.
The exhibits are always good, Golub said, "but this year's was really nice. People should try to get out to see it."
The following students were named winners in the Art of Recycling exhibition:
First Place: Environmental Guardian, by Sydney Bloomfield, Pasco High.
Second place: Protect Our Future, by Jamie Defelice, Ridgewood High.
Third place: Pigs Fly; Why Can't People Recycle? by Monica Mirabile, Ridgewood High.
T-Shirt Award: Pigs Fly; Why Can't People Recycle? by Mirabile, Ridgewood High.
People's Choice Award: Protect Our Future, by Defelice, Ridgewood High.
Best Use of Newspaper: Swim Freely, by Mychal Milhollen, Ridgewood High, and Why Recycle? Because We Can't Leave Nature to Luck, by Christina Penkal, Ridgewood High.
Best Art: Growth, by Kali Wright, Mitchell High.
Recycling Award: Landfill House, by Hannah Newhall, Land O'Lakes High.
Best Use of Materials: A Bag Made of Grocery Bags, by Mary Murrhee, Pasco High.
Theme Award: Why Recycle? Choose Your Future, by Michelle Housel, Gulf High.
Best Environmental Concept: Circle of Life, by Meike Groh, Pasco High.
Commissioner's Award: Benefit of Recycling, by Megan Bodine, Pasco High.