Child's balloon stampede design suits contest to a 'T'

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Blue Ridge Elementary student Cheyenne Webb got an uplifting surprise Monday when she found out she was named winner of the children’s T-shirt design competition for the Walla Walla Balloon Stampede.

The fifth-grader was in class when Walla Walla Valley Chamber of Commerce T-shirt design contest coordinator Judy McDole came into her room. McDole played a game with the students to see if they could guess the winner. Webb’s parents later came in wearing the bright green shirts with their daughter’s design.

As one piece of the prize, a cookie party was provided for the classroom to celebrate the win.

Webb’s design — an orange and green balloon with the theme “Fly Me to the Moon” written in bright letters across it — was chosen from 500 entries. McDole and son Lee organize the contest every year by putting out a call to local schools. A selection committee chooses the winner.

The top entry gets the design on the shirt, plus $25 in cash and T-shirts for the family. In addition to the cookie party, kids in Webb’s classroom received a Balloon Stampede button with the winning design. The T-shirts generally sell out each year, said Betsy Hadden, the Chamber’s director of member services. They cost $18.

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