Two coloring contest winners were rewarded Wednesday morning for their artistic, creativity coloring of the holiday submission in the Ahwatukee Foothills News for the annual Festival of Lights event.

There were more than 14 submissions in this year’s coloring contest. Both contest winners were presented with a $150 check from AFN’s publisher Kent Johnson, which went to their school.

Melanija Simovich, a first-grader at Kyrene de la Colina Elementary, was one of the winners of the coloring contest and her award was broadcasted on the morning announcements of the Colina Broadcast Club.

Simovich’s coloring process came down to one important aspect: to make the essence of Christmas pop out on the paper, taking her 15 minutes to complete her artwork.

The second check was awarded to Tori Garza, a fifth-grader at St. John Bosco Catholic School.

Garza first heard about the contest from her father, who thought it would be a great idea for his daughter to channel her inner “Picasso” to win the contest.

Garza said the completion for her work of art was a weekend process, making sure she had all the shading in the picture just right and it stood out from the other submissions.

She was awarded the check during her first class, where her fellow classmates cheered and praised her for winning the contest.

Garza’s winnings will be going towards supplies for her classroom, which will be decided in the near future.

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