Greenville Boys and Girls Club begins Black History Month Art Contest ahead of MLK Day

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) -Several kids at the Boys and Girls Club of the Coastal Plain Jack Minges unit in Greenville could be seen tapping into their creative side Friday afternoon.

They were participating to possibly win the ninth annual USCelluar Black History Month Art Contest. The competition encourages the children to create unique artwork that pays homage to African American Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematic icons.

Kids like fourth grader Jorden Hagan say they understand the importance of it.

“It’s important to celebrate black history month because, without black history month and all those black people, we wouldn’t be where we are right now,” Hagan said.

The contest is for Black History Month, but it generally starts a few weeks early. This year, it started on MLK day weekend, in honor of Martin Luther King Jr.

The goal of the contest was for the kids to focus on Black STEM figures, but some chose King Jr.

It doesn’t matter who the kids chose to draw, USCelluar Store Manager Mark Ellingwood says he just wants them to walk away with knowledge.

“The history of these icons,” Ellingwood said. “Where they came from, what they accomplished. We want these kids to know anything is possible.”

Hagan says he feels the same way due to King Jr’s impact.

“Martin Luther King is a part of every single black person,” Hagan said. “Know that anything is possible and all of us are equal.”

Ten finalists from the Jack Minges unit will be chosen by club representatives to have their artwork displayed starting on February 1st.

Anyone 18 and older is invited to vote for their favorite piece as the top three vote-getters will win money. That announcement will come in March.