Scottsdale fifth-grader wins nationwide video contest

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By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- A fifth-grade student at BASIS School in Scottsdale, Piper Sehman, has been selected winner of the nationwide No Burn Day Video Contest.

The Fountain Hills resident created a 30-second video using animated Lego characters to deliver a message on why Phoenix metropolitan residents shouldn't burn wood on high pollution advisory days in the winter.

The contest is sponsored by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality and Maricopa County Air Quality Department.
"Piper's innovative video succinctly delivered a message about the benefits of cleaner air during our holiday season in a way that really engages the viewer," said ADEQ Air Quality Division Director Eric Massey.

Piper also received a certificate of achievement from the superhero No Burn Man, a part of the "No Burn Day? Don't Burn Wood" campaign, at her school's assembly Friday.

Piper worked on the video for dozens of hours after learning the animation style from her brother, according to her father Nick Sehman.

An honorable mention was also awarded from the judges to Stephanie Zlateva of Mountain View, California for a video she created on her iPad.

Both of the videos will be used in this year's "No Burn Day? Don't Burn Wood!" winter outreach campaign.

The campaign asks Maricopa County residents and businesses to refrain from burning wood on days when air is trapped in the Valley.