Ryan Sunada-Wong, a fourth grader from Wyoming Elementary School in Millburn, placed third in Essex County's 2010 "My County" Poster Contest. Fourth-graders from all over the state, who generally study the State of New Jersey as part of their curriculum, are invited each year to create posters that depict the special and unique qualities of their respective county and how those qualities relate to the services provided by county government.
Countywide, the poster contest generated 608 entries from 42 schools. Fifteen award-winning posters will appear in an Essex County 2010-2011 calendar, and each artist received an individually engraved medal, certificate and various Essex County-themed gifts. First, second and third place winners and their families also received an annual pass to the Turtle Back Zoo. The awards ceremony was held on May 26, 2010 in the Freeholders' Chamber at the Hall of Records in Newark.
Ryan's poster depicts places in the county meaningful to him. The Paper Mill Playhouse is where Ryan enjoys great plays in town. Beautiful Branch Brook Park, designed by the firm of Frederick Law Olmsted, has cherry blossom trees outnumbering Washington D.C.'s. The Turtle Back Zoo is a popular destination for children, and the Essex County Court House earned its spot because of its architecture.
In addition to thanking his family, Ryan wishes to acknowledge his teacher, Mrs. Teri Solomon for encouraging him to enter the contest, his art teacher, Mrs. Janet Tsakis, and his after-school cartooning teacher, Rick Parker.