Sweet Land of Liberty parade announces awards

Published 12:00 pm Tuesday, June 30, 2020

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Keeping with tradition, several outstanding members of the Class of 2020 will receive awards as the 36th annual Sweet Land of Liberty Parade for youth honors America’s birthday on July 4. This year‘s parade will be held virtually due to the current health crisis.

Award winners exemplify the parade theme of “Star Spangled Everything,” said Amanda Trask, Junior Service League board member and chairman of the 2020 parade.

“These honorees have been stars in the classroom and in service to their schools and community,” Trask said. “Junior Service League is proud to recognize them as part of the parade program that will be broadcast on the City of LaGrange Facebook page and web site at 10 a.m. on July 4, the traditional time of the parade.”

Lady Liberty award winners include Beth Toney, daughter of Adena Leiann Toney and Samuel Toney Sr., of Callaway High School; Emma Grace Scott, daughter of Rex and Gina Scott, of LaFayette Christian School; Lily Kamat, daughter of Pradip and Madhavi Naik Kamat, of LaGrange Academy; Chaquave’ayr Robinson, daughter of Carlisha  Robinson, of LaGrange High School and Lacey Marie Stewart, daughter of Jessica Sebaugh and Jerry Stewart, of Troup High School.

Recipients of the Uncle Sam Awards are Braden Noble, son of Brad L.Noble and Leah Noble, of Callaway High; Rich Willimon, son of Laura Willimon and Richard Willimon, of LaFayette Christian School; Ujwal Modi, son of Anil and Hema Modi, of LaGrange Academy; Eric (Logan) Wegienka, son of Kristy Prater and Kerry Wegienka, of LaGrange High and Samuel Lee Weatherford Johnson, son of Jeremy and Kathryn Johnson, of Troup High.

Other award winners include fifth and sixth graders who will receive “Pat on the Back” awards. 

“These honorees were chosen by their schools because they display good citizenship, patriotism and positive attitudes. Honoring outstanding youth is a tradition of the parade dating back to its early days and founders  Annette and Jim Boyd,” Trask said.

The 2020 Pat on the Back award winners include Asia Herndon and DyQuez Brown of Berta Weathersbee Elementary; Cadence Seymour and Matthew Gatens of Callaway Elementary; Kamari Holt and Jhoan Espinosa of Callaway Middle; Ey’Miya Roberts and Rafiel Varner of Clearview Elementary; Amariya Ogletree and Ky’llege McFarland of Ethel Kight Elementary; Kaylee Escobedo Bautista and Jaden Jeong of Franklin Forest Elementary; Ally Hollstrom and John (JT) Radcliffe of Gardner Newman Middle; Nora Crabtree and Brody Walker of Hillcrest Elementary; Jayda Simon and Jackson Waldrop of Hogansville Elementary; Serenity Ervin and Preston Williams of Hollis Hand Elementary; Jessika Martinez and Tucker Haynes of Lafayette Christian; Cameron Petite, Aubrey Billups and Aryan Patel of LaGrange Academy; Taylor Fields and Kayden Anderson of Long Cane Elementary; Sheniya Philpot and Austen Ellison of Long Cane Middle; Macey Thompson and Noah Arrington of Rosemont Elementary; Chase Roberts and Jeremiah Jackson of West Point Elementary.

This year’s parade honors all frontline workers who have served the community during the pandemic.

“The children will salute not only health care workers and first responders, but also grocery workers, truckers and delivery personnel, food preparers, sanitation workers and others whose service to the community has been so important and so appreciated during the difficult months of the health crisis,” Trask said.

To participate,  children or their parents were able to submit photos or short videos of their entry to  JSL Sweet Land of Liberty virtual parade Facebook event page.

Entries closed June 28. Entries will be judged and cash prizes awarded.

All entries will be put together to form a “virtual parade” to be shown on the City of LaGrange Facebook page on July 4th.