The winners of the Recycled Yard Art Contest were announced at the Hillsborough County Fair last month.

By Lisa Meredith and Lynn Barber

Twice each year, UF/IFAS Extension Hillsborough County sponsors a Recycled Yard Art Contest, one at the Florida State Fair and one at the Hillsborough County Fair. The purpose of the Recycled Yard Art Contest is to increase environmental awareness and encourage reuse/recycling of materials into yard art.

The competition involved two and three-dimensional artwork creations made from items already used for their original purpose. During the eight days of the 2021 Hillsborough County Fair, attendees voted for the People’s Choice Award on one of several entries submitted.

After counting 1,065 votes, the People’s Choice Award winner is Andy Hamilton for his “Hungry Mouse,” which he created using a canister, pressure gauge, horse shoes, nails, cat food can, marbles and scrap metal.

Susan Ferrell won the Judge’s Choice Award for Adult Submissions. Her creation, “Happy Gnomes,” included plastic bottles, bottle caps, Target bags and transparency sheets.

The Youth Judge’s Choice Award winner, “Fairy Bells,” was created by Madison Koch. She used leftover quilt fabric, a broken necklace, tree branch, bells and an old key.

All contest-winning entries are on display at the UF/IFAS Extension Service, located at 5339 County Rd. 579 in Seffner, until Sunday, January 2, 2022. We hope you will stop by to view these creations, stroll through the Bette S. Walker Discovery Garden and see what we have to offer.

This year, we welcomed yet another group of creative residents. In every contest, there are items we would love to have in our landscapes. Our challenge to you is to put on your creativity hats now. We hope you will consider submitting an entry for the Florida State Fair, held from Thursday, February 10 to Monday, February 21, 2022, and the Hillsborough County Fair Recycled Yard Art Contest next fall.

Contact Lisa Meredith for more information about this upcoming contest at or 744-5519, ext. 54146. Thanks for reducing, reusing, recycling and repeating.

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