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Harrold surprised by Hometown Holiday button contest selection

Hattie Harrold is pictured with her winning design for the Hometown Holiday button. Photo courtesy of Kate Harrold

For St. Mary eighth grader Hattie Harrold, math comes easy. Although she is an eighth grader, she is already taking Algebra 2 and feels like the class is still pretty easy for her. So, when Harrold's Hometown Holidays button design was selected to represent the newly created New Richmond holiday celebration, she was surprised to say the least.

"When I first heard that my button design was selected, I was very surprised. I had never considered that I might actually win the contest," Harrold said. "Mrs. (Michelle) Scanlan called my mom while we were in the car, and my mom had no idea what she was talking about. It turned out that neither of my parents even knew that I had entered the contest."

Harrold said the button design contest was introduced to the middle school students at St. Mary by their art teacher, but was also going to be graded in addition to being entered into the Hometown Holidays contest.

"I wouldn't call myself a very gifted artist, and I've never really been one of those people who draws cute little animals with big round puppy eyes and that little sparkle thing, so I decided to pick something easy: a Christmas light. After drawing the bulb, I realized that it probably wasn't worthy of an 'A' for my art assignment, so I decided to add the two fancy H's like many other students had, and then the little motto," Harrold said. "I never thought that it would win, but I was hoping that I would at least get full credit for it in art class."

Although Harrold considers herself to be a math person, she still enjoys taking time to draw when she can, mostly cards and bookmarks, as well as coloring with Cray-Pas oil pastels.

"I'm not that great of an artist, so I love Cray-Pas because you can take a whole bunch of random colors, mix them together in weird shapes, and somehow you get a beautiful picture," Harrold said. "Working on art is also relaxing and it allows you to express yourself, dive into another world, and look at one piece of paper about a thousand different ways."

In addition to being excited to see her button design featured on this year's Hometown Holidays button, Harrold said she was also a little humbled when thinking about everyone in the community wearing a button she designed.

"The idea that everyone will be wearing my button makes me realize how small and friendly our town is," Harrold said.

This year's event will be held on Thursday, Nov. 30, starting at 6 p.m. with the holiday lights parade and will be followed by a tree lighting ceremony in Glover Park at 6:45 p.m. and fireworks over Mill Pond at 7 p.m.

"I think that the holiday events that are taking place this year are a great idea and that they will really give our town a cozy, festive feel," Harrold said.

Jordan Willi
Jordan Willi is a reporter for the New Richmond News. Previously, he worked as a sports reporter at the Worthington Daily Globe in Worthington, Minnesota. He also interned at the Hudson Star Observer for two summers and contributed to the Bison Illustrated sports magazine at North Dakota State University.
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