DNREC, DelDOT sponsor youth artist rain barrel painting contest

Students must apply to enter by March 3
February 10, 2014

The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control’s Watershed Assessment Section and the Delaware Department of Transportation are sponsoring a contest to educate the state’s young people on the benefits of using rain barrels to reduce rainwater runoff and improve water quality. Selected children or student groups will be invited to paint creative designs on a rain barrel that will be put on prominent public display.

DNREC and DelDOT will choose participants in the contest based on their application, design ideas and site placements. Once contest participants have been selected, they will have five weeks to finish their painting and submit final photographs and information requested.

The rain barrel designs will be voted on by the public online at The top five painted entries will be displayed at this year’s Delaware State Fair, where they will be voted on again by fair visitors for best painted rain barrel. These five grand prize winners will also participate in the annual Governors Day program at the Delaware State Fair.

The 55-gallon plastic barrels for the contest will be fully assembled and come with two coats of primer applied. The children or student groups are responsible for supplying their own paint for their design. To enter the contest, participants must complete and submit an application by Monday, March 3, with a description and preliminary sketch of their design.

As part of this competition, each selected individual or group for the contest will be required to find a public home for their finished rain barrel. Placement can be at a school, with a nonprofit organization, church, municipal building, or other public venue.

Young artists who consider participating in the contest must be willing to give of their time, materials, paint and brushes or other application tools, their creativity, an interpretation of their work, and provide a short biography of themselves. In exchange, the Rain Barrel Program will provide a fully assembled and primed rain barrel, sandpaper, top coat, bubble wrap, free publicity, and a location to temporarily display the work of art.

Applications can be found at Completed applications should be sent by close of business March 3 to: DNREC Watershed Assessment Section, c/o Sharon Webb, 5 E. Reed St. Suite 305, Dover, DE 19901.

For more information, contact Sharon Webb at or 302-739-9922.