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Piluso wins first place in peace poster contest

| Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2007

Nathan Piluso, a sixth grade student at West Hills Intermediate School, has taken the first step toward becoming a recognized artist by winning a local competition sponsored by the Kittanning Lions Club.

Piluso's poster, which was among more than 350,000 entries submitted worldwide in the 19th annual Lions International Peace Poster Contest, won first at the local level in the contest, which emphasizes to young people the importance of world peace.

Piluso's poster was selected by judges from the Kittanning Lions Club for its originality, artistic merit and portrayal of the contest theme, "Celebrate Peace."

Kittanning Lions Club president John Procious said he was impressed by the expression and creativity of the students at West Hills Intermediate. "It is obvious that these young people have strong ideas about what peace means to them. I'm so proud that we were able to provide them with the opportunity to share their visions."

Piluso's poster will advance to face stiff competition at the district level, and might go on to the multiple district and international rounds of competition. One grand prize winner and 23 merit award winners will be selected in the international competition. The grand prize includes a cash award of $2,500, plus a trip for the winner and two family members to New York City. The 23 merit award winners each will receive a certificate and $500.

Locally, first-place winner Nathan Piluso, second-place winner Kasey Crispen, third-place winner Melissa Smith, and seven honorary winners, Kelsey Fair, Emelia Gourley, Carly Holly, Kaitlyn Kline, Jessica Rosenberger, Timber Walker, and Lainey Yockey were recognized for their participation during the band and choral concert at West Hills Intermediate School on Dec. 19. The first place winner received a $100 savings bond, the second place winner a $75 savings bond, and the third place winner a $50 savings bond. All 10 students received silver dollars.

Past international grand prize winners can be viewed at www.lionsclubs.org.

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