Communications: News

Forest Lake Fourth-Grade Wins First Place in Statewide Anti-Tobacco Poster Contest

Wednesday, May 10, 2006  
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Madeline Gemuenden, a fourth-grader at Scandia Elementary in Scandia, is the winner of the 2006 Minnesota Tar Wars Poster Contest. Her poster, which states ‘Tobacco-Free: One Scoop in the Bowl of Life,’ shows a cereal bowl filled with words that describe a happy life. The word being lifted out by the spoon is tobacco-free. Posters were judged on artistry, creativity, originality and their ability to communicate a clear POSITIVE message to remain tobacco-free. Gemuenden’s poster will now advance to the National Tar Wars Poster Contest to be held this July in Washington, D.C.

The Tar Wars program is taught by family physicians, family medicine residents, medical students and other health care professional who join together to address the issue of youth-targeted marketing and access to tobacco. These volunteers go into classrooms across the state and share the Tar Wars message. The program is filled with fun and interactive lessons focusing on the long and short-term effects of tobacco use, image-based effects of tobacco use and reasons people use tobacco.

For her efforts, Gemuenden and one adult family member will be awarded a trip to Washington, D.C., to participate in the National Tar Wars Poster Contest. She will also receive a framed certificate and a Tar Wars t-shirt. The prizes were made possible thanks to a generous donation from the United Hospital Foundation.

The posters were judged by more than 400 family physicians during the Minnesota Academy of Family Physician’s Spring Refresher on April 20-21, 2006. Second place went to Amber Kerfeld of Holy Family School in Sauk Centre and third place went to Blake Dornfeld of Oak View Elementary in Maple Grove.

Tar Wars was developed in 1988 by the Hall of Life at the Denver Museum of Natural History and Doctors Ought to Care (DOC). It has been implemented in 50 states and is owned and operated by the American Academy of Family Physicians. Tar Wars was introduced in Minnesota during the 1996-97 school year. The program reaches close to 400,000 children nationally and internationally each year.

The Minnesota Academy of Family Physicians is a professional association of approximately 3,000 family physicians, family medicine residents and medical students organized to assist family physicians in providing quality medical care in Minnesota. The MAFP is the largest medical specialty organization in Minnesota and is a state chapter of the American Academy of Family Physicians, one of the largest national medical organizations in the United States with more than 103,000 members.


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