Delaware Forest Service Arbor Day Poster Contest

  • This year’s theme is “Trees are Terrific… In Cities and Towns!”
  • Free pine seedlings offered to all contest participants

The 2013 Arbor Day Poster Contest winner by Stephen Venable.
The 2013 Arbor Day Poster Contest winner by Stephen Venable.

The Delaware Forest Service’s 2014 Arbor Day Poster Contest is now open to all Delaware students in grades K to 5. Public, private and home schools are encouraged to participate as well as after-school groups and youth organizations. Posters are due by April 4th, 2013. This year’s poster contest theme  – “Trees are Terrific…In Cities and Towns!”  – is dedicated to the important role that trees play in our communities and schoolyards. The Arbor Day Poster Contest is designed to help teachers incorporate trees into classroom learning and help students foster an appreciation for nature all around them. As in previous years, the Delaware Forest Service will provide all participating classes with free loblolly pine seedlings, which will be delivered to schools for planting during the last week of April.

State Judging Critteria
On a scale of 1-5, the following criteria are used to judge posters on the county and state level. These should be kept in mind when submitting posters:

  • Use of Theme
  • Originality
  • Neatness
  • Artistic Expression

Judges will be selected by the Contest Coordinator and judging will take place at the Delaware Department of Agriculture in Dover. Winners will be announced in early April.

Prizes Awarded to Winners
A winner for each county (New Castle, Kent, and Sussex) will be selected for each entry category (Grades K, 1-2, 3-4, and 5). From these 12 winners, an overall state winner will be selected to represent Delaware as we celebrate Arbor Day 2014. Please note: the National Arbor Day Foundation is no longer hosting a National Poster Contest for fifth grade winners. The Delaware Forest Service is committed to continuing the Arbor Day Poster Contest at the state level.

County winners receive:

  • $25 gift card
  • ceremonial tree planting held at their school
  • invitation to the State Arbor Day Ceremony (attended by the Governor)
  • “Tree inspired” children’s book
  • winning posters will be reprinted on canvas, framed for display, and given to winner as a keepsake
  • winning posters will be displayed online

In addition to the previous prizes, the State Winner will receive an additional $25 gift card.

Please visit the DDA Forest Service website to see the 2013 Arbor Day winners.

Posters must be received by April 4, 2014. Entries should be mailed or delivered to:

Ashley Peebles, Contest Coordinator
Delaware Forest Service
2320 S. DuPont Highway
Dover, DE 19901
(302) 698-4551

The poster contest is designed to supplement student learning in other subject areas by increasing their knowledge about how community trees have a direct impact on Delaware’s health and well-being.  Schools are a perfect setting to incorporate the role of urban trees into a wide range of subjects. Community trees are working trees that provide a variety of important natural benefits:

  • provide beauty that can enhance neighborhoods
  • shade streets and schoolyards
  • create habitat and food for wildlife
  • improve air quality and moderate air temperatures
  • muffle noise and create privacy screens or windbreaks
  • improve water quality by filtering runoff into streams and rivers
  • reduce energy consumption

The Arbor Day Poster Contest also offers students the opportunity to plant their own pine seedlings as a great extension of their lessons about trees.

Teachers and parents who are interested in programs designed to increase their knowledge of trees, the many important functions of community trees, or to learn about grant opportunities to make their schools more “green,” visit

Website link for 2014 Arbor Day Poster Contest Registration and Information
This link will help teachers and individual participants to:

  1. Register a class for participation in the contest
  2. Reserve free loblolly pine seedlings
  3. Access the poster  guidelines and rules
  4. Download a curriculum guide.


  • Deadline to register and reserve free seedlings: March 14th
  • Deadline to submit posters for state contest: April 4th
  • Arbor Day in Delaware: April 25th
  • Seedling delivery: Week of April 28th


Delaware Forest Service announces Arbor Day School Poster Contest winners

Contact: Ashley Peebles, (302) 698-4551

The Delaware Forest Service has announced the winners of its annual Arbor Day School Poster Contest, which featured the theme “Trees are terrific – in all shapes and sizes!” This year, approximately 3,600 students participated in the competition.

This year’s statewide winner is Stephen Venable of Milford’s Honor Academy, who will be recognized along with winners from each county by Governor Jack A. Markell at the Delaware Arbor Day Ceremony on Tuesday, May 7 at 11 a.m., Blackbird State Forest Education Center, 2 Cedar Brae Lane, Townsend, DE 19734. To view a complete gallery of the winners, visit the following web link:
















Stephen Venable, a 4th-grader at Milford’s Honor Academy, is the statewide winner of the Delaware Forest Service’s annual Arbor Day School Poster Contest.














New Castle County Winners

Kindergarten          Giana Zamichieli — Kathleen Wilbur Elementary, Bear (click for poster)

Grade 1-2               Kate Connolly — The Independence School, Newark (click for poster)

Grade 3-4               Maya Rigor — Christ the Teacher, Newark (click for poster)

Grade 5                   Julianna Thawley—Christ the Teacher, Newark (click for poster)

Kent County Winners

Kindergarten        SuNora Lewis — Booker T Washington Elementary, Dover (click for poster)

Grade 1-2              Emma Crane —  W.B. Simpson Elementary, Camden-Wyoming (click for poster)

Grade 3-4              Miranda Pantoja— Holy Cross, Dover (click for poster)

Grade 5                  Naomi Bright— W.B. Simpson Elementary, Camden-Wyoming (click for poster)

Sussex County Winners

Kindergarten         Brooke Rhue — Rehoboth Elementary, Rehoboth (click for poster)

Grade 1-2              Brittany Valentin-Pegueros — H.O. Brittingham Elementary, Milton (click for poster)

Grade 3-4              Stephen Venable —  Honor Academy, Milford (click for poster)

Grade 5                 Grace Winston — Winston Learning Academy, Milford (click for poster)





Forest Service Seeks Young Artists for Arbor Day Poster Contest

For information, contact:
Ashley Peebles, Delaware Forest Service, (302) 698-4551

Attention: calling all young artists who love trees!

The Delaware Forest Service invites students in grades K to 5 to enter its 2013 Arbor Day Poster Contest, which is open to all public, private, charter, and home schools in the First State. “Trees are Terrific…in all Shapes and Sizes!” is this year’s theme, which highlights the importance of tree diversity in our community forests. The annual poster contest is a fun way to celebrate Arbor Day with your school, and every class that participates in the Arbor Day Poster Contest will receive free loblolly pine seedlings. Teachers or school personnel must register for their seedlings by March 8, 2013 at


Prizes Awarded to Winners
Winners will be chosen in each county – New Castle, Kent, and Sussex – for the following categories:

  • Kindergarten
  • Grades 1 to 2
  • Grades 3-4
  • Grade 5

From these 12 winners, an overall state winner will be selected to represent Delaware on Arbor Day.

All county winners receive:

  • $50.00 savings bond
  • An in-class Arbor Day presentation
  • Invitation to the State Arbor Day Ceremony (attended by the Governor)
  • “Tree-inspired” children’s book
  • Winning posters will be reprinted on canvas and framed for display throughout the year at state events and will be returned to the winner as a keepsake
  • Winning posters will also displayed online on the Delaware Forest Service website.
    Please visit: to see the 2012 winners

The state winner will receive all of the above prizes plus an additional $50.00 savings bond.

Prizes Awarded to Teachers
Teachers of students with a winning poster will receive $50.00 to spend on classroom material to help promote environmental education. Only one award per teacher/home school will be awarded. Teachers will be contacted with more information after the posters have been judged. All purchases must be made by July 1, 2013.

Posters should be sent or delivered to:
Ashley Peebles, Delaware Forest Service
2320 South Dupont Hwy.
Dover, DE 19901

Deadline for poster submission: March 28, 2013

Judging Criteria
Posters will be judged on the following criteria:

  • Use of theme
  • Originality
  • Neatness
  • Artistic expression

This year’s theme
Trees come in all shapes and sizes – producing a vast array of fruits, flowers, leaves, and seeds. A diverse community forest is a healthier forest that attracts a variety of wildlife and is more visually stimulating. Awareness of the difference between tree species can help in selecting the proper tree to plant in a given location based on site conditions, temperature and soil. Increasing student awareness of the many different types of trees is an important first step toward establishing a blend of trees that are well-suited to providing benefits such as cleaner air and natural beauty.

Click here for the complete poster rules, guidelines and prizes.
Click here for a classroom guide with ideas to incorporate the theme into your curriculum.
Dates to remember
March 8: deadline to register for free seedlings
March 28: poster deadline
April 26: Arbor Day

Governor Markell Celebrates Arbor Day

Delaware State University Tree City USAPhoto #1: Delaware Arbor Day celebration: Delaware State University (DSU) is now the first Tree Campus USA in Delaware and the only historically black college or university in the United States that is currently certified by the National Arbor Day Foundation. Less than 150 colleges and universities nationwide have achieved Tree Campus USA certification. On hand to mark the occasion are: (from left to right): Dr. Alton Thompson, DSU provost and vice president of Academic Affairs; Dr. Arthur Tucker, research professor; Dr. Susan Yost, herbarium educator; DSU President Harry L. Williams; Gov. Jack Markell; Dr. Sathya Elavarthi, assistant professor of agriculture; and Michael A. Valenti, Delaware State Forester.

At Delaware’s official state Arbor Day celebration held at Delaware State University on May 3, Governor Jack Markell honored the schoolchildren who won this year’s annual Arbor Day School Poster Contest sponsored by the Delaware Forest Service. The 2012 theme was “Trees are terrific… from acorn to oak!”

Over 100 Delaware schools participated in the contest this year and winners received a U.S. savings bond, a book about trees, and a professionally framed canvas rendering of their artwork.

Photo 2 Aurora Krause_McIlvaine  of the Early Childhood Center
Kindergarten from Kent County Aurora Krause

Photo #2: Governor Markell congratulated Aurora Krause, a student from McIlvaine Early Childhood Center in Magnolia whose poster was named the winner in the Kent County kindergarten category.


Photo #3: Seth Flaherty, a student from W.B. Simpson Elementary in Camden-Wyoming, receives congratulations from Governor Markell for his winning poster in the Kent County Grades 1-2 category.


Photo #4: Corinne Gumpman, who attends W.B. Simpson Elementary in Camden-Wyoming, was recognized by Governor Markell for her winning poster in the Kent County Grades 3-4 category.


Photo #5: Governor Markell offers congratulations to Shannon Glew from Holy Cross Elementary School in Dover, whose poster won the Kent County Grade 5 category in the annual Arbor Day Poster Contest.

Photo 4 Winner Kent Co. Corinne Gumpman
Grades 3-4 Winner from Kent County Corinne Gumpman

Photo 3 Seth Flaherty of W.B. Simpson
Grades 1-2 from Kent County Seth Flaherty

Shannon Glew of Holy Cross
Shannon Glew of Holy Cross