MANCHESTER - The 2013 Patriots Pen essay contest which is sponsored by The Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) of the United States and locally by Harned-Fowler VFW Post 6471 is open to all 6th, 7th and 8th Graders. The Grand Prize is $5,000.

This year's Patriots Pen theme is; "What Patriotism Means to Me." Students are asked to write a typewritten essay 300-400 words long.

The entry deadline is no later than Nov. 1 and the essay is to be delivered to VFW Post 6471 located on Depot Street by 6 p.m.

Annually, more than 100,000 students from grades 6-8 (nationwide) enter.

One first-place winner from each state competes to win one of 46 national awards totaling $46,000.

The Vermont State winner competes for the Grand Prize and could win $5,000 and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C., in March.

All local students who enter compete for cash and prizes totaling $600 at Post 6471 level with a first, second and third place winner.

Post winners then advance to District 1 VFW level and compete against the winners of all Posts in Southern Vermont for $200 in cash prizes plus certificates.

The District 1 winner then advances to State competition and competes against his or her peers from the other two Districts of Vermont for $1,000 in total cash prizes at VT State VFW level.

The State winner then advances to national competition to represent Vermont and competes against 53 of their peers from all States and territories.


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For entry forms and rules, contact Harned-Fowler VFW Post 6471 Sr. Vice Commander Steve Leach at 362-9840 or visit www.vfw.org and search VFW Scholarship Programs.