Groton HARVEST reaps its logo contest winner


Students in Groton High School’s new STEAM Learning Center’s communications cluster, specifically teacher Amber Novack Landers’ graphics design class, spent the first quarter of the school year working on a logo design project for Groton Harvest; a real-world project for students to experience what it’s like to be an authentic graphic designer.

The students’ logos were then presented to a board from the Groton Harvest initiative for one to be chosen as the actual design for the program. Choose one they did – and the winner is senior, Zoe Barclay!

Barclay, along with her teacher, Novack Landers, were guests at the Dec. 3 meeting of the Groton Board of Education, where they explained the extensive process by which Barclay researched and designed her winning masterpiece.
Just this past June, Groton Central School District was notified that it was the recipient of a very generous multi-year “Groton HARVEST” grant through the Park Foundation that would be used for efforts focusing on healthy eating both in and outside of school for the entire Groton community! At that time, Superintendent Margo Martin said, “It is a very exciting endeavor that includes several community partnerships, including the Groton library, Groton Recreation, and others.”

As Barclay spent hours upon hours doing research on her design, she focused on what she could create to incorporate the concepts of school, community, farms, and all that Groton represents. “I wanted something that would be unique and not generic,” Barclay said.

What Barclay eventually settled on, and what set her design apart from the others, was precisely what she had hoped for – a very unique concept, as it depicts a community, with corn fields as its backdrop, all atop the opened pages of a large book.

What really brings “unique” to life in Barclay’s design is that the buildings in her logo are definitely not generic, as they conceptualize the actual buildings on Main Street in Groton! Barclay explained that she used Google Earth to ensure the accuracy of each building, and then worked diligently to replicate them to the best of her ability. “Getting the arches right on some of those windows gave me fits at times!” Barclay said. Nonetheless, the end result is something she can be extremely proud of, and it will be used extensively in the months and years ahead.

Barclay’s talents are not limited to graphic design by any means. In 2017, she was one of six students chosen to represent Groton among almost 200 teens from Central New York at the Teen Institute in Penn Yan. Teen Institute is held to promote teen resilience and ability to choose healthy lifestyles by developing their emotional intelligence and understanding of leadership.

This past summer, Barclay was one of 360 young women selected to attend the prestigious 77th American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) Girls State session in Brockport, NY. As part of the annual program, outstanding students are chosen from their local high schools to spend a week learning about the inner workings of state, local, and county government.

This premier leadership conference is designed to provide practical insight into the workings of the government, promote youth civic engagement, instill a sense of pride in America, and empower the next generation of women leaders, providing them with a network that lasts a lifetime.

Barclay is also a dedicated and accomplished member of Groton’s cross-country, and winter and spring track teams, and has been actively recruited by some colleges because of her skills in those areas. Before choosing running as her singular athletic focus, Barclay took ballet classes from age 4 to 14.
Congratulations are the order of the day for Barclay on so many levels, and I hope everyone will have a chance to spot her winning logo around Groton as it makes its appearance.

Catch Expansion Fever at the library
If you read this column last week, you will know that the 2,000 square foot expansion plans for the Groton Public Library are well underway. The library will hold a special session Tuesday, Dec. 11 at 6:30 p.m. for the public to view the architectural drawings and learn more about the project. Sara Knobel, library director, GPL trustees, and members of the Friends of the Library will be on hand to answer your questions.

Should you miss this opportunity, be sure to come back here next week for an overview of what was covered.

Santa at the library
Sponsored by the Friends of the Groton Public Library, Santa Claus will be visiting the library from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15. Visitors may take their own photos with Santa, but those who do not have a camera may use the library camera. Every child will receive a free book and a Friends’ bookmark of their very own.

Giving the gift of life
The December holidays are a wonderful, joyous time for most of us, but, unfortunately, there are many who may find it a bit challenging to be joyful because they are in need of a gift that can only come from a blood donor. Your blood donation this holiday season can give cancer patients, those undergoing surgery, accident victims, and many others the perfect gift – the gift of life.
Currently, the American Red Cross is experiencing a severe blood shortage! Blood donations often decline from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day, as people get busy with holiday activities, but patients don’t get a holiday from needing blood.

The Groton Community Church, United Church of Christ, 204 E. Cortland St. will be hosting a blood drive from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday, Dec. 15. Donors of all blood types are desperately needed for both whole blood and platelets. To schedule an appointment, call the American Red Cross at (800) 733-2767, visit them at, or download the Blood Donor App. All donors will receive a free t-shirt and $5 Amazon e-card.

Groton on the Inside appears weekly. Submit items to Linda Competillo, or (607) 227-4922.


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