Seymour eighth-grader wins Oktoberfest logo contest


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Drawings of a Ferris wheel, a hot air balloon, a pretzel, an accordion, a German alpine hat, a mug of beer, a banner with “Oktoberfest” and “Seymour, IN” will adorn T-shirts and pins for this year’s festival.

The colorful creation was drawn by Harley Koons, 13, an eighth-grader at Seymour Middle School.

Her design was chosen as the winner among 23 entries for this year’s apparel logo contest conducted by Seymour Oktoberfest Inc. in conjunction with the Seymour Noon Lions Club, which sells the festival apparel that’s produced locally by Dicksons Inc.

“I’m going to be really excited to see people wearing them, like, ‘Oh, I did that. Wow!’” Koons said.

During a Lions Club meeting Sept. 3, Koons received a $250 prize from Oktoberfest board member Kendra Zumhingst and club President Dennis Carlson. Seymour Mayor Matt Nicholson, Koons’ mother, Erin, and Lions Club members also were there for the presentation.

Earlier this summer, the festival announced information about the contest. People ages 13 and older could submit an entry containing appropriate themes expressing Bavarian or German culture and traditions and be creative and appropriate for public use. Entries also had to include the words “Seymour Oktoberfest” and “2021.”

The winner’s design would go on apparel for the comeback year for the festival, as it was canceled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Zumhingst said a panel of judges unanimously chose Koons’ design based on theme, originality and presentation.

“It wasn’t like it was just one person making the decision. Everybody came up unanimously that she won,” Zumhingst said. “I’m really excited about it.”

Koons said she spent about a month working on the design, receiving help from her art teacher, Kay Fox.

“There were a lot of different ideas, and we just kind of collaged them together,” Koons said.

She learned she was the winner a week after it was shared with her family.

“I actually found out at my little sister’s birthday party,” Koons said. “They decided to make it a big surprise. My dad actually found out like a week before, so it was a big surprise. I was really excited.”

She’s glad she decided to enter the contest.

“I’ve been artsy for a while. A couple of years ago, I actually joined Kay Fox, and she has been my teacher for the entire time of drawing,” she said. “I just like doing the contests to see if I win or not, and I thought this would be something really cool to do because I’ve not done it before.”

Knowing proceeds from the sale of the shirts and pins will go to the Lions Club to distribute to charities was a bonus.

“That actually makes me really happy that I did this. I’m proud that I won,” Koons said.

Koons has grown up attending the Oktoberfest on the first weekend of October each year, and she’s happy it’s back this year. The festival will run from Sept. 29 to Oct. 2 in downtown Seymour.

“I like the food and just walking around with my friends,” she said. “Just going on the Ferris wheel, eating all of the food and going around and seeing what everybody makes, I like that it’s something that everybody can go to and everybody can participate in. And the parade, that’s a lot of fun to see. Just everybody has some kind of part in it.”

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