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September 25. 2013 8:30PM

Making the Grade

‘Making the Grade’ contest adds incentive prizes


Checking out a 2013 Ford Focus in front of Memorial High School in Manchester on Wednesday were, from left, Mayor Ted Gatsas; David Ryan, Manchester assistant school superintendent for curriculum and instruction; Dallas Lagerquist, vice president and retail market manager at NBT Bank; and H. Andy Crews, president/CEO of AutoFair. The car will be given away at the end of the school year to a student making the honor roll who registers for the drawing. (MICHAEL COUSINEAU/UNION LEADER)

MANCHESTER — Sponsors are spicing up this year’s car giveaway to a high school honor roll student by adding more prizes to boost participation.

This year’s “Making the Grade” contest includes offering two more rounds of prizes and providing gifts — and iPad mini and $100 gift card — to the 11 student finalists who don’t hold the winning key to start the 2013 black Ford Focus.

The sedan’s sticker price runs $16,995.

“I think it’s amazing,” junior Leah Raymond said after the contest was unveiled at Memorial High School. Similar assemblies were set at Central and West.

Raymond and fellow junior Diana Cantin said they would study more to earn a higher rung on the school honor roll — and thus garner more entries for the car.

“I will because I really want a car,” Cantin said.

Not everybody interviewed at Memorial was as enthusiastic.

Senior Elizabeth Morrissette, who’s made high honors in the past, probably won’t enter, calling it “more of a hassle” than it’s worth.

And she already has a car.

Junior Jordan Fischer said he might enter depending on whether he had the time to go enter.

Mayor Ted Gatsas said students should seize the chance and enter since life provides limited opportunities.

“It’s a car you get to keep,” Gatsas said.

A West student has won each of the past two years. A Central student won the first year.

For each of three report-card quarters, students can earn entries: one for making the honor roll, two for high honors and three for the principal’s list, for a potential of nine entries per student. To enter, students must bring to AutoFair their report card and a letter they receive from the mayor congratulating them for making the honor roll.

H. Andy Crews, AutoFair president/CEO, said too many students were waiting until near the end of the year to enter and often couldn’t find the paperwork they needed. So students now have more reasons to enter earlier.

After both the first and second report-card quarters, two names will be chosen from each school. One will win an iPad mini and the other a $100 gift card.

At the end of the third quarter, the grand prize winner will win the car, an iPad mini and a $250 gift card.

The 11 finalists will each receive an iPad mini, a $100 gift card and a bag of prizes from sponsors.

New sponsors this year are NBT Bank, Comcast Spotlight and AMI Graphics. Returning sponsors are the New Hampshire Fisher Cats and the City of Manchester.

mcousineau@unionleader.com


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