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Grand Opening Essay Contest

The post-restoration opening of the historic Minnesota State Capitol is an opportunity for Minnesotans from every corner of the state and all walks of life to celebrate “My Minnesota Capitol.” As part of the festivities, Minnesota students are asked to consider the following prompts and craft an essay about one of them:

  1. My Minnesota Capitol. Your Minnesota Capitol. Everybody’s Capitol.

    Everyone who works or visits the Capitol uses and views it in different ways. What does the Capitol building mean to you? What do you think it represents for Minnesotans from different backgrounds, and why is it important to remember that the Capitol building is designed for every Minnesotan?

  2. A place to remember history and for history in the making.

    Many historical and symbolic moments have occurred at the State Capitol, and it will be the site of more history-making events in years to come. What is one of the most important events that occurred at the State Capitol? How do you think our state Capitol will continue to serve Minnesota as our state keeps changing, and what do you think might occur at the Capitol that will impact the future of Minnesota?

The essay contest is open to Minnesota elementary, middle and high school students in the following age groupings: Grades 3 – 5, Grades 6 – 8, and Grades 9-12. Entries will be judged by a panel of VIP judges including top policymakers, elected officials and Lt. Governor Tina Smith.  The top essay at each level will be recognized at a program at the state Capitol building on August 12, 2017, where the winning students will be invited to share their essays with their fellow Minnesotans.

Submitting an Essay

Each essay must contain the student’s name, school, home address, phone number and current grade on the front page or cover sheet. Middle and high school entries must be typed in a 12-point font, double-spaced on white 8.5-by-11-inch piece of paper. Elementary school entries may be handwritten. Essays should be 250 words or fewer, and will be judged on creativity, clarity, content and adherence to the theme.

All essays must be received via email or postmarked by April 28, 2017. Emailed entries can be sent to Capitol.essays@state.mn.us. Mailed entries can be mailed to:
Minnesota Department of Administration
c/o Kathy Morgan
50 Sherburne Ave, Suite # 200
Saint Paul, MN 55117

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