KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Students at Central High School in Knoxville have made it into the top 50 finalists of a nationwide competition sponsored by Vans, a shoe company. It is the only Tennessee school to make it to this round of the contest.
Central High said if they win the $50,000 prize, the money will be used to revitalize the school’s art program by buying things like pottery wheels, gallery lighting and mobile display panels. Open voting is being held to select the winner.
In February, Central High was selected as one of 250 schools in the Van’s Custom Culture High School Design Competition. Each school was sent two pairs of plain white shoes for students to decorate. The design for one pair needed to represent “Hometown Pride” and the other to honor the founder of Vans who died earlier this year.
A group of 20 students at Central worked during art classes, lunch and after school to complete their shoe designs.
For the first design, students used needle felting to create the Great Smoky Mountains, then added several Knoxville and Fountain City Landmarks, including the Sunsphere, which were sculpted of clay.
For the second pair, students painted one shoe to represent the founding of Vans in the 1960s, complete with a skater on top, and the other shoe represents the growth of the brand around the world.
The winning shoe will be chosen by popular vote. To vote, visit https://customculture.vans.com/. Voting is open until May 6 and you can vote once a day.