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Teen wins $500 prize in Schaefer memorial contest

With a nod to Ernest Hemingway, 17-year-old HRVHS junior Elizabeth Gobbo penned a short story that earned her first place in the Laura Douglass Schaefer Memorial Writing Contest.

The annual contest was created to honor Schaefer and to foster creative writing in her home community. Schaefer, a Hood River Valley High School graduate and dedicated writer, passed away in 2007 at the age of 21.

According to the Gorge Community Foundation, which administers the contest funds, Gobbo competed against nine other teen writers. In addition to securing first-place honors, Gobbo received a $500 prize.

When pressed, Gobbo said she would probably “be boring and put the money in the bank.” After a slight hesitation, she added that she might use part of the money to buy a language program to help her learn Russian.

The spark for Gobbo’s story came during last winter’s ice storm, as the teen author watched three young children playing with a rooster at a local gas station. Gobbo transformed this seemingly unremarkable event into a story of friendship and redemption entitled Primary.

To read Gobbo’s winning story in its entirety, visit the Gorge Community Foundation website at www.gorgecf.org, under the “Grants” section, sub-category “Laura Douglass Schaefer Memorial Writing Contest.”

GCF’s Mission is to enhance the quality of life in the Columbia River Gorge by building permanent charitable endowments to help fund the long-term needs and opportunities in local communities.

GCF assets total more than $2,500,000 and represent more than 50 charitable funds established by local families, individuals and organizations.

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