The Parade Company and Skillman Foundation today announced the winner of the 25th Annual Skillman Foundation’s Float Design Contest for the 90th America’s Thanksgiving Parade® presented by Art Van. Fifth grade student, MyRee Scott, from Duke Ellington Conservatory of Music & Arts at Beckham Academy, was joined by her family, teachers and school administrators today to see her winning design, “Make Detroit Colorful,” transform into a larger-than-life float.

 The float, which features giant flowers and an artist painting on a canvas, will be led by Scott and her family during America’s Thanksgiving Parade® presented by Art Van. The float also features an 80-foot wrap which incorporates the 2016 Honorable Mention winning designs along with other entry favorites

“We are thrilled to support the creativity of local Detroit students and be a part of this great holiday tradition for 25 years,” said Tonya Allen,president & CEO of Skillman Foundation. “The students worked very hard this year and the contest submissions were outstanding. We are excited to highlight Detroit’s talented youth and see MyRee’s inspiring design come down Woodward Avenue on Thanksgiving morning.”

The Annual Skillman Foundation’s Float Design Contest gives Detroit students, from grades four through eight, an opportunity to design a float to appear in America’s Thanksgiving Parade® presented by Art Van. Five 2016 honorable mention winners were selected and invited to see their designs on display. The students include: Jaida-Rose Wilson (5th grader, Flagship Charter Academy) for her work “Neighborhood of Artville,” Sumaiya Mohib (8th grader, Davison Elementary Middle) for her work “Dream Neighborhood,” Haylyn Sanders (6th grader, Henry Ford Academy: School for Creative Studies) for her work “Going Green,” Nevaeh Banks (6th grader, Fisher Magnet Upper Academy) for her work “Community Shared,” and Anton Washington (7th grader, Fisher Magnet Upper Academy) for his work “Gobble Ride.”

 “Skillman Foundation is very dedicated to the youth of our community and we are grateful to have them as supporter for the last 25 years,” said Tony Michaels, president & CEO of The Parade Company. “It’s so wonderful to see the faces of the students light up when they see their float designs come to life.”

 This year’s theme is “90 Years Together,” marking a major milestone for the storied parade that is broadcast in more than 170 cities across the country. Recognized as one of the best Thanksgiving parades in the country by U.S. News & World Report Travel, America’s Thanksgiving Parade presented by Art Van will be heldon Thursday, November 24. For more information, visit

 The parade will be featured on WDIV-TV Local 4, including a one-hour national broadcast reaching more than 170 major cities across the country. News/Talk 760 WJR’s Paul W. Smith and CBS Radio will also broadcast live from the parade route.

The Skillman Foundation

Created in 1960, the Skillman Foundation is a private philanthropy committed to improving meaningful graduation rates in the Detroit region, so kids are ready for college, career, and life. The Foundation has assets of nearly a half-billion dollars, with an annual grants budget of $17 million. The Foundation works to achieve its goal by investing in community leadership, neighborhoods, safety initiatives, high-quality schools, social innovation, and youth development.

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