Earth Day Recycled Art Contest

To promote recycling and celebrate “Earth Day” (April 22), the York County Solid Waste Authority sponsors an annual Recycled Art Contest for York County High School students. Students in grades 9-12 are invited to participate and may submit artwork individually or as a team. Entries must contain 100% recycled, recovered or found content with the exception of paints, dyes, adhesives, canvas and mounting hardware. Entries may contain any recycled material as art medium, with the exception of food matter. Contest awards are $600 in art supply gift certificates, split evenly between artist(s) and school, for first place, $400, split, for second place and $200, split, for third place. Rules and guidelines for the 2019-2020 school year will be announced at a later date. 

Each year, an artist “Picker Day” is held at Refindings, 465 East Prospect Street in York. Refindings generously donates free materials for Recycled Art Contest artists to use in their pieces. Be sure to check out the photos below of our most recent Picker Day event.

This year (2018-2019 school year) the contest exhibit and awards event was held at York College’s Marketview Arts Gallery at 37 West Philadelphia Street in downtown York. The contest awards event was held on Thursday, April 18 from 6:30 to 8:30 PM. 


In 2019, participating schools included Central York High School, Dallastown Area High School, Hanover Public High School, Kennard-Dale High School, Red Land High School, Red Lion Area High School, South Western High School, and York Suburban High School. Twenty-eight students participated.

The first place winner was “Washed Up” by Mackenzie Burns, Brylee Rine and Becca Waller of Red Land High School. A second place award was given to Sophie Castro of Kennard-Dale High School for her submission entitled “Lost Home”. The third place winner was “Cancer: Garbage of the Soul” by Emma Crumling and Lea Wilhelm of Central York

Prizes were awarded based on artistic technique, artistic expression and creative use of recycled materials. Judges were Rita Whitney, Director of Communications and Engagement at the York County Cultural Alliance; Victoria Kageni-Woodard, York area artist and fashion designer/owner of Gusa by Victoria, LLC; and Joaquin Calles Guzman, York area artist. 

first place 2019

First place winner “Washed Up” by Mackenzie Burns, Brylee Rine and Becca Waller

second place 2019

Second place winner was “Lost Home” by Sophie Castro 

third place 2019

Third place winner was “Cancer:Garbage of the Soul” by Emma Crumling and Lea Wilhelm


The following photos were taken during “Picker Day” held in February 2019 at Refindings where artists sifted through items and selected free materials to use in their recycled art projects:

pd 1 pd 2 pd 3 pd 4