Drive-thru awards ceremony honors SilverArts medal winners

Recreation and Parks staff, left to right, Kayla Garrett, Katie Andrew, Chuck Vestal, Carlie Pudney and Markee Daye celebrate the SilverArts medal winners at the drive-thru ceremony on June 25.

Drive-thru awards ceremony honors SilverArts medal winners
July 08
14:25 2020

By Judie Holcomb-Pack

COVID-19 has put a halt on most events, but it couldn’t stop the staff of Recreation and Parks from holding a SilverArts awards ceremony in a most creative way.

Chuck Vestal, who coordinates Senior Games/SilverArts, has had a challenging year as most of the Senior Games events had to be canceled. The SilverArts competitions, which include Heritage Arts, Visual Arts and Literary Arts, were able to be held with some changes for social distancing. The Literary competition, judged by members of Winston-Salem Writers, was handled as in the past since judging packets were picked up without personal contact. The Heritage and Visual Arts competitions were scheduled to be held at the Central Library, but it was closed due to the pandemic. After conferring with the judges, it was decided that photos of the entries would be submitted instead of the actual pieces and the judges would view them online to score each entry.

But how to deliver the medals to the winners? 

Vestal then came up with the idea of an awards presentation where winners could receive their medals at the drive-thru window of the Black-Phillips Government Center on Patterson Avenue. Winners were given ten-minute time frames to come to the Government Center, but they were surprised as they exited the driveway to see staff of Recreation and Parks holding signs and shouting out congratulations. 

The awarding of medals was certainly different this year, but being creative during a pandemic made it just as special for the recipients.

A compilation of all the entries in the Literary competition is now available for $5 each or 3/$10 at the Brown-Phillips-Smith Government Center, 2301 Patterson Avenue, at the drive-thru window. Look for information on the 2021 Senior Games/SilverArts to be announced in January.

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