For the past eight months, students from across Saskatchewan have been pouring over the pages of 30 different books—this year's finalists of the Saskatchewan Young Readers' Choice Awards – The Willow Awards—so they can vote for their favourites.
More than 12,500 votes have been tallied, and the winners were celebrated at the awards gala held at St. Angela School in Saskatoon on May 23, 2019.
Created in 2001, the annual awards promote reading to students and celebrate Canadian literature. Students from across the province read books and voted on their favourites in three categories. This year's award winners are:
- Underneath the Sidewalk by Claire Eamer: Shining Willow Award for books written for young readers;
- Laura Monster Crusher by Wesley King: Diamond Willow Award for books written for readers in Grades 4 to 6; and
- Yellow Dog by Miriam Korner: Snow Willow Award for books written for readers in Grades 7 and up.
"We would like to give a big thank you to all our authors and illustrators for creating magical worlds and exciting adventures for us to explore, and to the over 12,500 students across the province who read and voted for their favourites," said Darrelle Downs, a Saskatchewan Young Readers' Choice Awards board member and chair of the Snow Willow Award selection committee. "We are especially grateful to the teachers, staff, and students at St. Angela School for all the hard work they have done. We would like to thank SaskEnergy and all our other sponsors whose continued support makes these awards possible."
"Being involved in and hosting the awards gala has been a great opportunity to expose our students to some great Canadian literature," said Tony Bairos, principal at St. Angela School. "Any time you can get children excited about reading, that's a good thing. The gala really brought our school community together too. I want to thank our teachers, especially Lindsay Shawarski and Vice-Principal Olya Kowaluk, for all of the work they put into a great event."
A recording of the event the event can be found at https://willowawards.ca
Pictured l-r: Claire Eamer, Wesley King, Miraim Korner