UPDATED! THAT’S RIGHT, MORE PICTURES!
Oh and remember to check out who won what and read the winning stories.
Me with winner Daryl George holding the Challenge plaque.
Winner Daryl George with Douglas Allen, brother of Alstyne Allen in whose memory the plaque is named.
Okay, first an aside, when I look at this picture I’m struck by all the natural – everybody appears to be wearing their own hair; that wasn’t always the case (natural hair revolution!). Everybody in this case is, from left, me, winners Chammaiah Ambrose and Daryl George, and patrons Dr. Hazra Medica and Akeilah Hillhouse for Frank B. Armstrong.
Honourable mentions in the 13 to 17 age category – Antigua Grammar School student Canice James and Irene B. Williams student Zahra Emanuel.
That green lipstick though! That’s Akeilah Hillhouse, rep for Frank B. Armstrong with winners in the 12 and younger category Chammaiah Ambrose, Zion Ebony Williams, and Judah Christian – in the ranking it’s actually Judah then Zion but that’s how they line up, I guess.
12 and younger, the most crowded field, yields lots of honourable mentions in addition to the top 3.
These additional photos are by Glen Toussaint of the Best of Books.
You’ve been warned: this is going to be a picture dump. I’ll be sharing memories of the Wadadli Pen 2016 Challenge season in pictures. Consider it a slide show like in those old school view finders and have fun!
p.s. to see the details of who won what and for links to the winning stories, go here.
To the right is the now retired Challenge plaque; the left is the brand new Challenge plaque. All the names of the winners through the years have been re-located and the plaque has been (re)named the Alstyne Allen Memorial plaque for a past volunteer member of the Wadadli Pen family (and a really good friend) who died in 2015. I’m happy that we could remember her and her contribution to Wadadli Pen – as I really couldn’t have gotten through those early years without her help. The new plaque is sponsored by and hangs in the Best of Books bookstore on St. Mary’s Street. As for the old plaque, it’s now for me a Wadadli Pen memento, one with strangely emotional resonance (when I consider how far this project has come). I felt emotional doing a mock-up of the new plaque for other more personal reasons. Either way, this Wadadli Pen journey is not a dispassionate experience.
This gift bag from Raw Island products valued at exactly EC$205.54 was among the prizes given to main prize winner Daryl George (author of Tropical Moonlight Sonata). For his main prize he also took EC$500, a pen (valued at approximately EC$150 give or take) and books from Pam Arthurton, a Barbuda Express voucher for two valued at EC$360 each covering travel to the sister island plus tour and lunch, more books from me (Joanne C. Hillhouse) and the Best of Books, including my Dancing Nude in the Moonlight 10th Anniversary Edition and Other Writings.
The Sweep series by Cate Tiernan was among the books donated by the Best of Books to the Wadadli Pen 2016 prize package. These went to 13 to 17 runner up Diamond Wayne (author of Granny for Sale) along with Lorna Goodison’s Selected Poems contributed by Pam Arthurton and EC$160 contributed by Dr. Hazra Medica.
Best of Books gave some games as well. Added these to the gift bags of Chammaiah Ambrose, Alyssa Charles, and Judah Christian.
Could these books be more different? Two went to the school with the most submissions and the other two were prizes in the 18 to 35 age category. See if you can guess which went where.
Winning writer Daryl George reads his story Tropical Moonlight Sonata at the Wadadli Pen Challenge Awards ceremony, 2016.
The winners in the 12 and younger category showing off their certificates and Seven Seas bags – also pictured, far left, is rep from Seven Seas distributor Frank B. Armstrong, Akeilah Hillhouse. Each bag included goodies (plus cash in the case of the top three) for the winners some sponsored by Frank B. Armstrong, Juneth Webson, the Cushion Club, CaribbeanReads Publishing, CODE, and the Best of Books.
Audience at the Awards, Wadadli Pen Challenge, 2016, the Best of Books.
From left, Wadadli Pen founder and coordinator – me (yes, sigh, wearing glasses), winner of the 12 and younger category Chammaiah Ambrose, winner of the 18 to 35 age category and overall winner Daryl George, and one of the 2016 patrons cultural advisor Dr. Hazra Medica. Sidebar: I know I’m wearing flats but was Hazra always so tall?
Chammaiah’s poem Guilty was a hit with the gathered audience.
Coincidentally, the Seven Seas rep who came out to the awards is part of my extended family, a cousin on the Hillhouse side. She stepped up to assist with the prize giving above and beyond the call of her duties as a Frank B. Armstrong/Seven Seas rep. We are grateful. She’s pictured here with the top three in the 12 and younger category – Chammaiah Ambrose, Zion Ebony Williams, and Judah Christian.
Me, with winner Daryl George, holding the Alstyne Allen Memorial plaque.
This is a photo call at the end with a mix of winners (Chammaiah and Daryl, centre), patrons (Medica, and Hillhouse batting for Seven Seas, right), and next to me (second from left) Douglas Allen, brother of the late Alstyne Allen – it feels weird typing that – for whom the Challenge trophy is named. Bit of Wadadli Pen trivia, the first three years of its existence Wadadli Pen was partnered with the Young Explorer of which Douglas is publisher and editor.
Still not used to pictures of myself in glasses (all that reading will catch up to you) but I couldn’t not share this – the winners’ plaque being held by winner Daryl George, centre, Douglas Allen, brother of the person for whom the plaque is named, and me.
Love this one! Akeilah presenting to Chammaiah Ambrose, the 12 and younger winner, on behalf of Frank B. Armstrong, me hovering in the background trying to get the prizes right. Best laid plans, man; I tell you.
Credits: opening vid, me. w/Music sampled from Chosen Sounds and Eminem. Not profiting from any of this, including the use of the music. Pictures by Barbara Arrindell of the Best of Books, except for the black and white which I lifted from cuz’s (Akeilah Hillhouse’s) facebook.