By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Photo Contest winners receive prizes at Kansas State Capitol
COURTESY PHOTO Pictured in front are Maekenna Wyrick, Hoisington, and Lizzy Sturgeon, Topeka, both fifth grade Happy Birthday, Kansas! Student Photo Contest winners. Also pictured are Rep. Tory Arnberger (R-Great Bend), Gov. Laura Kelly, Marearl Denning (representing the legislative spouses who sponsor the contest), Rep. Fred Patton (R-Topeka) and Rep. Ron Highland (R-Wamego).

TOPEKA — Winners of the Happy Birthday, Kansas! Student Photo Contest received prizes on Wednesday in celebration of Kansas’ 159th birthday at the Kansas State Capitol.

Governor Laura Kelly presented awards to the winners from first through 12th grades. First place in each grade receives an iPad and second place a Kindle. Marearl Denning, represented the legislative spouses who sponsor the contest, now in its sixth year, in conjunction with the Kansas Historical Society.

The statewide contest invited students to shoot photographs based on the theme, Going to School in Kansas, throughout the state in 2019. Photographs from the 24 winners will be on display in the Capitol visitor center through Feb. 5, and online at

These are the winners in the 2019 photo contest:

First grade: First place: Winston James Alexander, “Painting Applies,” Lawrence; Second place: Jarett Riley, “Anderson Hall,” Galva

Second grade: First place Rebecca Barnhardt, “Arvonia School,” Lebo; Second place: Josie Beltz, “Cheering for the Home Team,” Galva

Third grade: First place: Tanner Riley, “School in One Room,” Galva; Second place: Zoe Koon, “Enhanced Learning,” Overland Park

Fourth grade: First place: Alyssa Babcock, “Waiting for the Bell,” Topeka; Second place: Faith McMannis, “Roxbury Remnants,” Canton

Fifth grade: First place: Maekenna Wyrick, “First Day of School,” Hoisington; Second place: Lizzy Sturgeon, “Standing Beauty,” Topeka

Sixth grade: First place: Addison Sibley, “Old Schoolhouse,” Topeka; Second place: Jack Eaton, “The Hard Truth,” Shawnee

Seventh grade: First place: Kyle Christopher Miller, “Winter Sunrise at Drop-Off” Derby; Second place: Braxton Miller, “One Room School House,” Harveyville

Eighth grade: First place: Abraham Hilbert, “Face-Off,” Seneca; Second place: Liam Alexander Bell, “Empty Entrance,” Leavenworth

Freshmen: First place: Elizabeth Singh Dhillon, “The Bells of St. Marys,” Saint Marys; Second place: Noah Behrends, “District 34,” Wellsville

Sophomores: First place: Alysson Wells, “Neon Night,” Columbus; Second place: John Michael Dill, “Scenery,” Bucklin

Juniors: First place: Matthew Cunningham, “Graduation,” Graduation; Second place: Mariah Bailee Jo Stout, “Undefeated,” Bucklin

Seniors: First place: Jamasen Nichols, “Escaping the Dark and Lonely,” Lehigh; Second place: Monica Costa, “Friends,” Galva