“I love the J.W. Pepper!” – quite possibly the best testimonial we have had the pleasure of receiving from a customer – or perhaps future customer. This was only one of many wonderful things Eddie from Godfrey Elementary School in Wyoming, Michigan had to say about J.W. Pepper in a letter he wrote to us shortly after being crowned the winner of our Music in Our Schools Month coloring contest and receiving his prize – a box of music games for his school.
Pepper of Michigan has hosted this contest every March for the past four years as a means of advocating and celebrating music education. The contest has grown exponentially each year, resulting in over 1,100 submissions in 2013! We lovingly hang the colorful array of tubas, pianos, harps, trumpets, conductors and music notes up on our store walls as they come pouring in so that all who walk through the doors can enjoy them. It brings us great joy to see how creative and imaginative the kids who submit coloring pages to us can be. Oftentimes, the outline of the image meant to be colored serves only as a conduit for the child’s creative vision and we’ll see an entire orchestra drawn around a conductor, an intricate pattern drawn on a harp player’s gown, or in Eddie’s case – an electric guitar so spectacularly decorated that Les Paul would have nodded his head in approval.
As you can imagine, the process of narrowing all of these wonderful submissions down to select just one winner is a pretty tough task, but also quite rewarding. Heartwarming exclamations of “I love music,” “Music is my life,” and “My music teacher is my favorite” can be seen on many of the pages we receive.
We can only imagine how wonderful the teachers themselves must feel when it comes time to collect their students’ work, and they see for themselves what a difference they’re making in the lives of these children. Music in Our Schools Month is not only a way to raise awareness, but is a celebration of the hard work and dedication that music teachers give on a daily basis. That same hard work and dedication is reflected in the incredible work of these music students who are inspired by their teachers, and also by music. We can think of no better advocates!
A huge “Thank you!” goes out to Eddie’s music teacher, Dawn Downing, for taking the time to send Eddie’s letter as well as some pictures of the two of them opening their box of games. Most of all, thank you for being such an inspiration!
For your enjoyment, here is Eddie’s beautiful guitar and a copy of the letter he sent to us.