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“Water Valley History” High School Writing Contest In Honor Of Local Historian Set

Water Valley residents Eddie and Mari Foster are honoring the late Bruce Gurner with a writing contest to coincide with the Founder’s Day celebration. Helping coordinate the contest is Water Valley Principal Glenn Kitchens. – Photo by Jack Gurner

The Water Valley Main Street Association, and Mari and Eddie Foster are sponsoring a writing contest for grades ninth to 12th in honor of local historian, the late Bruce Gurner.

The contest is part of the upcoming Founders Day, April 19, celebrating the City of Water Valley’s sesquicentennial.   

This contest will determine a winner to receive the Bruce Gurner Award for Local History plaque plus a $50 prize and two honorable mentions. Winners will also receive framed certificates and a ribbon.

The students will write about Water Valley history, and may choose any subject in any period of the city’s history.  They may select an influential or outstanding citizen from the past, a certain era or place, or an obscure or unique point of interest to write about.

The goal of the contest is to encourage students to learn more about the city in which they attend school and promote interest in research, journalism, creative writing and history in general.

“Setting up interviews with older citizens would encourage interaction between generations and reveal interesting stories of the past years and insights into how things have changed throughout the years,” sponsor Mari Foster said.

“Our town is part of America’s rich cultural heritage and we should make an effort to keep its history alive in our community,” Foster continued.

On Founders’ Day, the winner and honorable mentions will have the opportunity to read what they have written, and to help celebrate Water Valley’s 150th year since its establishment.  Winners will be published in the North Mississippi Herald.

Winners will be chosen based on factual accuracy, creativity, writing style, and mechanics.  Entries must be typed, not hand-written.  Entries will be double-spaced and no more than 5 pages long with a title.   Include a cover sheet with name and address and grade.

Mail entries to:

Mari Foster
202 Church St.
Water Valley, MS 38965

Entries must be postmarked no later than April 9, 2008.

Entries can also be sent by e-mail as an attachment to

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