ART MERIT AWARD
ABOUT THE JUNE PEARL AWARD
Enter your child's artwork at the Erie County Fair!
5 contestants each year who enter in the 'Junior's Section 5-17' at the Erie County Fair have a chance to win the June Pearl Award along with $25 prize money. Kelsey and Wendy Merkle select 1 award per age group, and then one extra in the event we it is very close and hard to choose in a category (which is always true.).
ABOUT JUNE PEARL
June Pearl defied all odds as an artist. June's father enrolled her in secretarial school despite the fact that she had received a full scholarship at FIT in New York. Women were not artists in the 1950s; they worked as secretaries, nurses, and teachers.
June made several Santas during her tenure as Chairwoman of Hamburg Holidays, which has an advent castle with windows that unveil artwork of the town's children each day in December.
Additionally, June taught as an elementary Art School teacher and adored the Fair. She entered a large number of children in the art competition. They frequently entered art contests, and June kept a wire and hooks in her car for children who failed to follow the requirements.
When June began her battle with Parkinson's disease, her daughter Wendy Merkle established the June Pearl Art Merit Award in conjunction with the Erie County Fair, with Wendy's firm, Room To Spare Storage, providing the ribbons and award money.
June was the initial judge, stepping in with a cane the first year. The next year, she was in a wheelchair. Kelsey, June's granddaughter, has taken up the judging duties following her grandmother's passing.
The June Pearl Award is the perfect tribute, as June adored art, children, and the fair.