MIDDLESEX COUNTY – The Middlesex County Improvement Authority is looking for the next great young artist to pep up the cover of its 2016 online recycling brochure.

As of Oct. 1, the MCIA’s Recycling Division is opening up an art contest to all Middlesex County youth, fifth grade and younger, who are interested in sharing their talents with the region. 

“We wanted to do a little something different this year,” said Ed Windas, the MCIA’s Recycling Division Manager.  “We’d like to see kid’s take on ‘The Importance of Recycling.’ We are intentionally keeping the theme vague so that the children can present their own artistic interpretation on the subject matter.”

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The online brochure is a compilation of curbside pick-up schedules, yard-waste program details, as well as the specifics on a diverse number of County-sponsored recycling initiatives.

This guide is made available to the 90,000 participating homes and businesses in the County.

The hope is that schools and parents might take notice and motivate their students and children to get involved.

“For a young artist, this is certainly a way to get recognized,” said Middlesex County Freeholder Deputy Director Carol Bellante.  “But even more so, we hope this sparks some enthusiasm and conversation in our children about conservation and recycling.  This is a pivotal time to impress these lessons upon our youth.”

A range of art mediums will be accepted, from paintings to sketches using crayons, pens, pencils and oil pastels.

All submissions, which can be mailed in as a hard copy or emailed as a JPEG, must be received by the MCIA no later than Nov. 1.

Each entry should contain a teacher, parent or guardian’s name, along with their contact information, such as a phone number or address, as well as the name of the child artist.

A selection committee will narrow down the submissions and announce a winner on the MCIA’s website no later than Nov. 6.

Interested parties may mail entries to the attention of Maria Prato at the Middlesex County Improvement Authority: 101 Interchange Plaza, Cranbury, NJ 08512.  They can further email scanned or photographed submissions to mp@mciauth.com.

For further details on the MCIA’s “The Importance of Recycling” youth art contest, log onto to www.mciauth.com or call 609-655-5141.