A flag design submitted by Antoine Loomis and Brianna LaPerriere

A flag design submitted by Antoine Loomis and Brianna LaPerriere

Rocky students honour environment with flag design

A flag designed by two Rocky Mountain House students could become part of Alberta history.

A flag designed by two Rocky Mountain House students could become part of Alberta history.

The flag drawn for the Alberta Birthday Flag Contest by Grade 8 students Antoine Loomis and Brianna LaPerriere, at Pioneer Middle School, was among 256 designs that were narrowed down three.

The design contest was only open to Alberta children under age 18 and only children can vote in the online contest to choose Alberta’s unofficial birthday flag.

Members of the Alberta legislature are expected to decide whether to make it the official flag later this year.

Loomis said the pair designed about three flags before they came up with one inspired by the provincial flag. They added a crest in the middle that displayed Alberta’s provincial flower to join all symbols together.

“I like how it looks and how it represents Alberta,” said Loomis, 13.

LaPerriere, who sketched the flag for Loomis to colour, said it was important to represent Alberta’s natural environment in the birthday flag.

“It shows a lot of Alberta’s characteristics,” said LaPerriere, 13, about their flag.

Rob Lennard, Alberta Birthday Flag Contest co-ordinator, said response to the contest was great.

“We had designs submitted from 28 towns and cities across Alberta, from as small as a one-classroom school at a Hutterite colony in Southern Alberta, to the Alberta College of Art and Design and two universities.”

Students from Grade 3 to first-year university participated, he said.

The winning flag will be revealed on Sept. 1 — Alberta’s 111th birthday — at Bow Valley Ranche at Fish Creek Provincial Park during the 2nd Annual Alberta Birthday Celebration Extravaganza. Lt.-Gov. Lois Mitchell will raise the flag.

Admission is free for the event that runs from 5 to 8 p.m., with the opening ceremony and parade starting at 6 p.m.

The voting period for the flag contest started on March 18, the birthday of Princess Louise Caroline Alberta, the province’s namesake, and runs until Aug. 6, the birthday of her husband, former governor general John Campbell, 9th Duke of Argyll, who convinced Sir John A. McDonald to name Alberta after his wife.

To vote go to www.rancheeducation.com/flag-contest.

szielinski@bprda.wpengine.com