First Lady Justice, Department of Education invite students to participate in Golden Horseshoe Knighting Bench Contest


CHARLESTON, WV — First Lady Cathy Justice and the West Virginia Department of Education are inviting West Virginia students to participate in a Knighting Bench Design Contest. All 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th grade students who are public, private, or homeschooled are urged to participate in this Student Artist Series.

Last year, the First Lady’s Student Artist Series challenged students to design an original sword for the Golden Horseshoe Knighting Ceremony.

“The response was so tremendous for the sword design contest that we were inspired to create a new knighting bench,” First Lady Justice said. “Both of these items will be used for many years to come, and I can’t wait to see the innovative designs that come out of this contest.”

Eligible students are asked to use their creative talent to construct a knighting bench for the ceremonial custom of knighting top 8th grade WV history students as they become Knights of the Golden Horseshoe.

Students may submit their artwork, design and production plan HERE.

Entries must be submitted by February 21, 2023. The top five finalists will be announced by March 1, 2023. Each finalist will partner with a WV Career and Technical Education Center to bring their design to life and be judged by a panel of distinguished judges. The first place winner will be selected by May 1, 2023.

Design and submission information for the Knighting Bench Contest can be found HERE

For questions please contact James Coble at or Tim Elliott at

Contact Information

Jordan Damron,; CJ Harvey,


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