Boy is state letter writing champ

Peter Baumer, a fourth-grader from Port Orchard, was among three 2014 state champions in Washington’s “Letters About Literature” contest.

Baumer was the Level 1 (grades 4-6) champion. He wrote his letter to Laura Ingalls Wilder about her book, “Farmer Boy.” His entry was chosen from more than 4,000 entries.

The literary competition, sponsored by the Washington State Library and the Library of Congress, encourages students to write letters to their favorite authors, past or present.

Secretary of State Kim Wyman and the State Library will recognize the state champions, three second-place finishers and 26 honorable mention contestants during an awards ceremony in the Columbia Room on May 9 at 1:30 p.m.

The Washington State Library is a division of the Office of Secretary of State.

Nearly 4,245 Washington students submitted letters for this year’s contest. About 1,030 letters advanced to second-round judging and 210 semifinalists overall reached the third round. The semifinalists not invited to the awards ceremony will receive an award certificate in the mail.

The three state champions’ letters have been sent to the Library of Congress for the national competition.

More than 125 schools from around the state had entries. The contest ran from September to January.

Students wrote a personal letter to an author, explaining how his or her work influenced their perspective on the world or themselves. Students can write about works of fiction, nonfiction, or poetry.

They cannot write about music lyrics, comic books or comic strips.

National winners will receive a $1,000 cash award.

This is the ninth year that the Washington State Library and the Office of Secretary of State have sponsored the competition as part of Washington Reads, which highlights books about Washington or the Pacific Northwest.

The project is also sponsored by The Center for the Book in the Library of Congress.


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