Area students who received awards at the Elks Lodge #844 annual Youth Week Banquet on May 7. Photo by Shaw Israel Izikson.
Area students who received awards at the Elks Lodge #844 annual Youth Week Banquet on May 7. Photo by Shaw Israel Izikson.

WINSTED — The achievements of children in the area were celebrated at the Elks Lodge #844 annual Youth Week Banquet on Friday, May 7.
The lodge has held the event for decades, and this year’s event was special because it was the first time the banquet has been held since 2019, with the 2020 event canceled due to the Covid pandemic.
“We are bringing back all of our children’s events this year, including the fishing derby, soccer shoot, and hoop shoot events,” Loyal Knight and event co-organizer Meaghan Cook said. “Our events show children in the area how to be involved in the community in ways other than school. The programs that we have are more than just sports programs. We also have scholarships and an Elks’ Antler program for children under 18. We want to help children prepare for being out in the community and interact on another level.”
“It’s important for children to learn about sportsmanship and charity,” Lodge Exalted Ruler Tom Matthews said. “Children learn a lot of life lessons from our programs.”
At the event, children in the area were given various awards for taking part in soccer programs, along with awards given for Student of the Year, the lodge’s Americanism Essay Contest, and college scholarships.
Mayor Candy Perez read a proclamation from the Board of Selectmen honoring both area children and the Elks Lodge, declaring the first week in May as “Youth Week” in Winsted.
“This is one of the nicest things I do every year because it involves kids,” Mayor Perez said. “It’s good to recognize kids because we want them to be involved in positive things. The Elks, in all of the years I have known the people in this lodge, have done so much for our children in this town. Our youth needs guidance and encouragement, and we alone can help develop their qualities of character that are essential for future leadership. Our junior population represents our greatest resource. In the years ahead, they will represent the advancement of our free society.”
For more information about the Winsted Elks Lodge #844 call 860-379-8045.
Disclosure: Editor Shaw Israel Izikson is a member of Elks Lodge #844

Scholarship winners:
Jackson Chairviolotti $1000 a year next four years – Most Valuable Student Award 2020
Rebecca Dowling – Most Valuable Student Award 2021
Katrina Strachan – Laurel Festival Scholarship Award Winner
Student of the Year: Audrey Chairvolotti
Americanism Essay Contest: Allyson DeSanti

Soccer Awards:

U-8 Girls
First place: Haley Donovan
Second and third place tie: Illyana Borrelli-LaBarre and Lily Werner

U-10 Girls
First place: Avery Lillie
Second place: Clara Sundie
Third place: Kaylee Gamble

U-12 Girls
First place: Daisy Leach
Second place: Gabrielle Calkins

U-14 Girls
First place: Keegan Connelly

U-8 Boys
First place: Beau Werner
Second place: Tyler Connell
Third place: Aiden Starr

U-10 Boys
First place: William Wishart

U-2 Boys
First place: Riker Napoleon
Second place: Luciano Barber

U-14 Boys
First Place: Connor Wishart
Second place: Noah Olmstead