April 2-6, 2025



The North Carolina Azalea Festival introduced a new contest in 2017, the High School Writing Contest, in an effort to reach out to more youth in the greater Wilmington area.  In 2022 the Festival decided to move the 2023 contest to the Middle School level in hopes to engage younger minds in participation and see what creative works come to life in this age group! 

Middle School students are invited to submit either a descriptive essay or poem.  Over 100 thoughtful, interesting, and creative entries are received annually and judged by a local team of writers. Winners and finalists are selected from each category and receive various prizes from the Azalea Festival and outside the community.

Love Where You Live…in the Springtime!
Writing submissions are due January 31, 2024 for the Middle School Writing Contest. Students in middle schools across the state of North Carolina are invited to enter.

Contest Deadline: January 31st.

2023 Essay Winner – Siena Boldizar – Wilmington Academy of Arts & Sciences

2023 Poetry Winner – Tilghman Reiss – Wilmington Academy Arts & Sciences

2022 Essay Winner – Sara Frances Butler – New Hanover High School

2022 Poetry Winner – Jenna Ball, New Hanover High School

2021 Essay Winner – Mairead Benson,  John T. Hoggard High School 

2021 Poetry Winner – Adrian Jones, Cape Fear Academy

2020 Essay Winner – Madison Aloia, Jones Senior High School

2020 Poetry Winner – Jayson Cook, Laney High School

2019 Essay Winner – Abby Stone, Wilmington Christian Academy

2019 Poetry Winner – Madison Morrison, Wilmington Christian Academy

2018: Essay Winner – Hilary Batista, Ashley High School

2018: Poetry Winner – Katherine Neilson, Laney High School

2017: Essay Winner – Sarah Newton, Topsail High School

2017: Poetry Winner – Karleigh Kolander, Laney High School