INDIANAPOLIS -- State Sen. John Waterman (R-Shelburn) urges local fourth-grade students to celebrate Indiana's 196th birthday by entering the annual Statehood Day essay contest and answering the question, "What does Indiana mean to you?", before Oct. 29.
Local fourth-grade classrooms are also invited to attend Statehood Day celebrations in Indianapolis Tuesday, Dec. 11.
Space is limited and classrooms must be registered.
Teachers may contact Capitol Tour Office Coordinator Jennifer Hodge at 317-233-5293 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up.
Indiana became the nation's 19th state Dec. 11,1816.
"We live in a great state with a unique history, and this essay contest is a way for fourth-graders to think about what living in Indiana really means to them," Waterman said. "Students who are able to come to Indianapolis for Statehood Day in December will have the opportunity to tour different branches of government, meet state leaders and visit historical sites."
Waterman added the essay competition is open to any fourth-grade public, private or home-schooled student and is easy to enter. The following rules apply:
* Essays must include the student's name, teacher's or parent's name, school's name and contact information, including address and telephone number,
* Entries must range from 100-400 words, handwritten or typed,
* Students should convey what living in the state of Indiana means to them and highlight things that make them glad to be a Hoosier, and
* Essays must be postmarked no later than Monday, Oct. 29. Mailed essays should be sent to Indiana Center for the Book, 315 W. Ohio St., Indianapolis, Ind., 46202.
Judges will choose first-, second-, third- and fourth-place finishers.
The winners will be invited to read their essays during the Dec. 11 celebration in Indianapolis.
For more information about Statehood Day programs, log on to www.in.gov/idoa/2774.htm.