NATIONAL HONORS — From left, Elijah Beers age 5, First Place with a 171/2” sunflower; Kiley Emanuelli, 3, First Place with 102 pound pumpkin; Griffin Pritchard, 7, Third Place with a 643/4 pound pumpkin and Second Place with a 17” sunflower and his sister Delaney Pritchard, 9, Second Place with 94 pound pumpkin and Third Place with 141/4” sunflower. Standing with the winners is Gardeners of Rome President Debbie Evans. (Photo submitted)

Young gardeners receive national honors

Published Jan 20, 2017 at 4:00pm

Every spring the Gardeners of Rome gives out seeds for children 5-15 years old to participate in the Giant Pumpkin/Big Sunflower Contest. Oct. 1 the winners were announced. They were honored in a ceremony at the group’s monthly meeting on Oct. 24.

The winners can then submit the results to participate in the National Contest with the Gardeners of America/ Men’s Garden Clubs of America. This year the following local children received national honors:

  • Elijah Beers, son of Tanya Beers, age 5, First Place with a 17 1/2” sunflower
  • Kiley Emanuelli, son of Todd and Kristin Emanuelli, age 3, First Place with 102 pound pumpkin
  • Griffin Pritchard, age 7, Third Place with a 64 3/4 pound pumpkin and Second Place with a 17” sunflower
  • Delaney Pritchard, age 9, Second Place with 94 pound pumpkin and Third Place with 14 1/4” sunflower.

Griffin and Delaney Pritchard are the children of Bradley and Lisa Pritchard, and great-grandchildren of Baden Mudge. Mudge was a club member from 1954 until his passing this past November.

He ran the contest and promoted youth gardening for decades.