The Essay Contest is a cooperative effort between the South Dakota Department of Agriculture, Division of Resource Conservation and Forestry, the State Association of Conservation Districts, Pierre McDonald's.
The contest is open to fifth and sixth grade students from South Dakota. Rules and contest flyers are available in January of each year from local conservation districts or local service forestry offices.
- Cash prizes, certificates of achievement, and other awards will be presented to the first, second, and third place winners of each contest.
- A cash award of $150 is presented to the first place winner's school to be used to purchase needed equipment or supplies.
- Deadlines for entries each year are usually in late March with the awards presented on or around Arbor Day, which traditionally falls on the last Friday in April.