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Essex Seniors Invited to Tell Their Stories In Annual Legacy Writing Contest

Essex County Legacies Writing Contest deadline is March 25.

Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr. and the Essex County Division of Senior Services are inviting Essex seniors ages 60 and older to submit an original story to the 2013 Essex County Legacies Writing Contest. 

“Our senior citizens have led interesting lives and I am always impressed by the stories that are submitted. Our Legacies Contest is an opportunity for our older residents to remember their past and share their experiences with family, friends and the younger generation,” DiVincenzo said.

“It’s never too early to begin collecting your thoughts and writing your drafts. I encourage all our seniors to start working on their entries now,” he added.

“This is a great way for our older residents to express themselves, stay involved in the community, and share the people and events that helped shape their lives,” Essex County Director of Citizen Services Anibal Ramos said.

Essex County Division of Senior Services Director Jaklyn DeVore said the County’s Legacies Writing Contest has many benefits for senior citizens.

“Legacies enables seniors to share stories about their past, helps them express their emotions, and exercises their minds to keep them sharp,” she said.

“You don’t have to be a professional writer to enter this contest. Some of our writers have never written before entering our Legacies contest. It’s a great way to remember old times and establish a written history so the past is not forgotten,” DeVore added.

Last year's contest entries ran the gamut, from a young girl's flight from Croatia during the outbreak of World War II to young children's confusion when they encounter a "colored water fountain" in South Carolina.

The contest rules are as follows:

  • Writers must be Essex County residents who are 60 years of age or older.
  • Entries should be original stories focusing on a special person, a life-altering experience or a significant period in your life.
  • The suggested maximum length is 1,500 words.
  • Stories must be typed or legibly hand-written on 8.5-by-11 inch paper.
  • Entries must have a cover page with the author’s name, date of birth, address and telephone number.
  • The story title with no identifying information should appear on the first page of the story text. All identifying information about the author is removed when stories are judged by the review committee.
  • Seniors may submit only one entry.
  • Previously published stories may not be submitted.
  • Seniors should keep a copy of the story. Entries will not be returned.
  • The deadline for entries is Monday, March 25, 2013. Late entries will not be accepted.

Stories should be sent to the following:

Essex County Division of Senior Services

Attn: Legacies Contest

900 Bloomfield Avenue

Verona, NJ 07044

All writers who submit stories will be invited to the Division of Senior Services Legacies Luncheon Celebration in May. Awards will be presented to the authors of the winning and honorable mention stories. These stories will be published in theEssex Advisor.

For a complete list of contest rules or for more information, please call the Essex County Division of Senior Services at 973-395-8375.

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