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Maryland Arbor Day Poster Contest 2022: Trees Are Terrific, and Maryland Forests Are Too!

Photo of Arbor Day poster

First-place winning poster by Camden Steiner of Harford County

Each year, fifth-grade students submit their entries to the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Arbor Day Poster Contest. The posters are created using varied artistic techniques, including colored pencils, crayons, markers and paint, all illustrating an annual theme. For 2022, the theme was, “Trees are Terrific…and Maryland Forests are Too.”

Original artwork focused on trees cleaning the air, creating shade and generally contributing to healthy outdoor living. The Maryland Forest Service accepted hundreds of entries for the 2022 Arbor Day Poster Contest. Each county’s forestry board reviews entries and selects a winner, then forwards them for judging by the volunteer Maryland Urban and Community Forest Committee.

Their work is judged in one day by a panel of forestry experts and a special guest judge, Maryland First Lady Yumi Hogan, who is an accomplished artist and adjunct professor at Maryland Institute College of Art. She has served as a guest judge each year since 2018.

The judging was conducted at DNR headquarters in Annapolis, a return to live judging following a virtual event in 2021 due to the pandemic. “It is an honor to participate in this annual event, highlighting the artistic talents of Maryland’s school children, and celebrating our environment and the trees that call it home,” said First Lady Yumi Hogan.

Photo of poster contest judges with three winners

Judges of the 2022 Fifth Grade Arbor Day Poster Contest stand with the top three prize winners

Photo of poster featuring tree artwork

Second-place winner by Arynn Brooks of Charles County

The first-place winner for 2022 was Camden Steiner from Bel Air, Harford County. Camden’s school was awarded a prize of 15 trees for planting.

The second-place winner was Arynn Brooks from Waldorf, Charles County. Arynn’s school received 10 trees for planting.

Photo of poster featuring tree artwork

Third-place winner by Alexis Horichs of Carroll County

The third-place winner was Alexis Horichs from Westminster, Carroll County. Alexis’ school received five trees.

Maryland Forest Service staff coordinate with the schools of the top three winners to plant the trees in the spring. The Arbor Day Poster Contest is hosted annually by the department’s Tree-Mendous Maryland Program.

“Our Arbor Day Poster Contest provides a great opportunity for Maryland’s 5th grade students to learn about the importance of our forests while recognizing their artistic talents,” Natural Resources Secretary Jeannie Haddaway-Riccio said. “I am always impressed with the quality of their work which demonstrates that they will be good stewards of our natural resources for years to come.”

Article appears in Vol. 25, No. 2 of the Maryland Natural Resource magazine.