The Arvada Chamber of Commerce hosted the first Arvada local competition of the National Civics Bee on April 18, where three middle schoolers qualified to move on to the statewide finals in Denver on May 19. The National Civics Bee is organized by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation.
At the Arvada local competition, the first-place winner was Tally Smith from Falcon Bluffs Middle School. Ella Engebreston from Mandalay Middle School placed second, followed by Sriram Yalavarthy from Drake Middle School.
Contestants answered questions about civics in a live quiz show format run by a panel of judges. Smith won a $500 prize for winning the local competition, and all local finalists will have the opportunity to compete for further cash rewards at the state finals; $1,000 for first place, $500 for second place and $250 for third place.
Arvada Chamber President and CEO Kami Welch said she was happy with the knowledge and enthusiasm displayed by the nine students who competed and added that she hoped the event would help develop a new generation of civic leaders.
"We are so proud; all nine students represented their schools and our community exceptionally well today," Welch said. “It’s been an honor to host the National Civics Bee and play a small role in developing an active pipeline of civic engagement in Arvada. We can’t wait to root on our students at the state level.”
Colorado Chamber President and CEO Loren Furman said she looks forward to the Arvada finalist competing in Denver next month.
“We’re thrilled to recognize young Coloradans interested in civic engagement and to inspire the next generation to be involved in shaping our communities,” said Colorado Chamber President and CEO Loren Furman. “We congratulate this year’s winners from the Arvada competition and look forward to seeing them next month in Denver.”
This is the first year Arvada has hosted a local Civics Bee competition. Buena Vista, Pueblo, Denver, and Craig’s respective Chambers of Commerce are also hosting local competitions this year.