HRM’s Scholarship Essay Contest 2013

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The region is also, for me, the salty, briny air. It is the booming, thunderous sound of naval airplanes zipping through the air. It is the tender meat of local crabs that have been broken open. It is the piercing silence of those who are pondering the artwork created by gifted minds at the Chrysler Museum of Art. Hampton Roads is the diversified faces of those from various backgrounds or the feeling of windswept beach sand cascading across your toes or the rows of patrons attentively watching a performance at the American Theatre.

- Amirio Freeman, Hampton High School

The experiences I have had, the people I have met, and the things I have done have made this place home, and no shallow Google search can ever display the richness of the area. Hampton Roads is an experience in and of itself, and only by living here can a person truly have that experience.

- Regina Paparo, Bishop Sullivan Catholic High School

The people here can take the smallest spot of a beach, park, or whatever it may be, and tell you why it’s so dear to them. Whether it reminds them of family, the sacrifices they made, or just something they miss, anyone who has spent their entire life here has a favorite place, and can tell you why it means so much to them. That’s what makes Hampton Roads so special; it’s all about how you can take what you have and make it special on your own.

- Patrick Beegle, Norview High School

Each city in Hampton Roads offers a quality of life that you expect from the area you call home. The Chesapeake Bay and Atlantic Ocean, coupled with the unique geography of each city, form the canvas of the region’s splendor and the people who reside in the diverse communities comprise the beauty of the artwork. The days spent in Hampton Roads create lasting lifetime memories and the experience of living here ensures that visits elsewhere are compared to the expectations of home.

- Kassidy Phelps, Isle of Wight Academy

Nothing beats the satisfaction of pizza and garlic knots at Pungo Pizza after working up an appetite at Sandbridge. Navigating home from the beach across Elbow Road provides a unique and satisfying completion to a great day in the sun while thousands of tourists are dealing with massive crowds on the boardwalk and traffic on I-64. While avoiding the crowds can provide needed solace at times, I also relish opportunities to join the frenzy and experience the beach culture at the oceanfront during monstrous events like the annual Sand Soccer tournament, Neptune Festival and East Coast Surfing Championships.

- Hannah Velloney, Greenbrier Christian Academy

That is what the Hampton Roads community will always be to me, a place that I conquered my fears and lived my childhood full of laughter, happiness, and victory. As hard as I worked to get away from this wonderful place I will always miss it. Hampton Roads will forever be my real home.

- Kelsey Megerle, Lake Taylor High School