About the Elizabeth Barker Delaplaine Award for Young Artists Program

Bettie Delaplaine was a lifelong supporter of the arts in Frederick County, Maryland. Her strong belief in the importance of the arts in our community, and the importance of supporting young emerging artists, inspired The Delaplaine Arts Center to create the Elizabeth Barker Delaplaine Award for Young Artists–affectionately known as the Bettie Awards–in her honor. The award program is an annual event run in March, nationally recognized as Youth Art Month.

The program has several goals:

  • To help young artists gain experience in submitting their own artwork for review and exhibition
  • To provide an experience of having their artwork judged and understand the importance of presentation
  • To provide an accomplishment that can be added to college, art school, or professional applications

Bettie Awards

Prize money for the Bettie Awards is sponsored in part by a generous gift from the Frederick County Art Association.

  • Bettie Award Grand Prize Winner: $1,000
  • Other Bettie Award Winners: $100 each
  • People’s Choice Award Winner: $250

2021 Important Dates

February 1, 2021 • Entry deadline
February 12, 2021 • Bettie Award Winners announced via Facebook
February 28, 2021 • Deadline for artwork to be delivered to the Delaplaine for exhibition
March 6, 2021 • Awards presentation and Bettie Award Grand Prize Winner announced
April 25, 2021 • Exhibition closes; last day to vote for People’s Choice Award Winner
April 28–May 2, 2021 • Artwork pick-up

Application Guidelines

Artists residing or attending school in Frederick County, Maryland, in grades 9–12 (public, private, or homeschooled) are invited to apply for the awards. There is no application fee. Applications must be submitted by February 1, 2021 at 11:59 pm EST. Teachers: PLEASE encourage your students to complete the submission process on their own. Submitted artwork:

  • Must have been created by the applicant within the past year
  • Must not measure more than 5 feet in any direction
  • Can be in any medium

IMPORTANT: Artists who are selected as Bettie Award Winners are required to properly prepare their artwork for exhibit installation. Judges consider presentation an important factor when selecting the Bettie Award Grand Prize Winner, and will not award the prize to artwork that is incomplete or poorly presented, regardless of its artistic merit.

Application process:

  • Artists must enter their artwork through the online EntryThingy portal.
  • In order to access EntryThingy, artists must first create a login and password.
  • Only one submission per artist will be accepted.

Guidelines and dates are subject to change. Contact the Exhibitions Manager with questions about the guidelines or the application process.

Selection & Awards

Bettie Awards judges will select winners based on the following criteria:

  • Originality
  • Composition
  • Success in communicating message
  • Creativity
  • Presentation (second round judging)

A first round jury of Delaplaine instructors will review the submissions and select at least 10 artists to be named Bettie Award Winners. Selected artworks must be delivered to the Delaplaine by February 28, 2021 for an exhibition that will take place March 6–April 25, 2021.

A separate, second-round jury of made up of several artists from throughout the region will select one artwork from among the award winners to be named the Bettie Award Grand Prize Winner. The Bettie Award Grand Prize Winner will receive $1,000. All other Bettie Award winners will receive $100. Award winners are expected to attend the awards presentation and exhibition opening on Saturday, March 6, 2021 at 2:30 pm.

Visitors will be invited to vote for their favorite work of art from among the Bettie Award Winners throughout the duration of the exhibition. The artwork that receives the most votes will be named the People’s Choice Award Winner and receive $250.

The Bettie Award Grand Prize Winner will be featured in an article in Delaplaine Arts magazine, distributed throughout the region. Images of other Bettie Award artworks may be shared for publication in local print and online media, and used in promotion for subsequent Bettie Award programs.


Past Bettie Award Grand Prize Winners

View the 2020 Bettie Award Winners Exhibition online

2020: Isabelle Burdge • The Creature from My Dream (clay/mixed media)


2019: Colleen Avila • American Boy (oil on canvas)


2018: Caleb Spencer • Self-Portrait (photography)


2017: Maggie Kirkpatrick • The Search (photography)


2016: Megan Werner • Rockstar Energy (metal sculpture)


2015: Kate Kinley • To Find the Meaning of It (photography)


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