WALLINGFORD — As a way to get the town’s youth involved in the upcoming Wallingford 350+2 Jubilee celebration, State Rep. Craig Fishbein created an essay contest for middle school students.
Four finalists have been selected and the winner will be announced during the History Day breakfast on June 20, at 7:30 a.m. at the Wallingford Historical Society.
“...the history of the town is something that is always very important to me,” Fishbein said. “I tried to put the two together, engaging our youth as well as learning about the history, not only the participants, but myself as well.”
Students at Dag Hammarskjold and Moran middle schools were asked to write about their favorite local figure.
The four finalists were chosen by school administrators, who considered form, style, grammar and research. Emilia R. Farrell wrote about John Brockett and Alfred L. Pierce; Lule Borbarsky wrote about Moses Y. Beach; Carter Lagasse wrote about Dr. Mark T. Sheehan; and Maritza Hernandez wrote about Lyman Hall. Fishbein will select the winner.
Christine Mansfield, co-chair of the Jubilee, said the essay contest is a great way to include the younger generation in the Jubilee.
“I think it’s a wonderful initiative that continues to bring the next generation into the Jubilee,” Mansfield said.
Fishbein, a Republican, is up for re-election this November. His opponent, Democrat Rebecca Hyland, commended the essay contest and its efforts to encourage students to learn about the town’s history.
“History is something that is often overlooked,” Hyland said. “It’s not getting the credit for being as important a subject as it is. I actually taught high school history for a number of years and I used to try to emphasize to the students how important it was to understand one’s past so that you could build upon it and improve.”
While this essay contest is a part of the Jubilee, Fishbein hopes to do it again in the future.
“I think it would be a really great thing to have every year in town,” Fishbein said.