Winners Picked In L.A. Solar City Video Contest

Sophie, in her cameo in the Environment California solar video first prize winning entry

Two months ago ReWire let you know about Environment California's solar video contest "Sunlight. Camera. Action.", which offered cash prizes for the short videos that best conveyed just why Los Angeles should become a global solar-power leader.

Well, Environment California has announced the contest's winners. We here at ReWire think they made some pretty good choices -- and not just because the first prize winner included a gratuitous clip of his cat.

Alex Loverde's video "It's Time" is an unabashed paean to L.A., the "place of what's possible." Loverde says of his entry, which won the $1,500 first prize on Environment California's competition,

The purpose of this video is to make solar power part of the identity of Los Angeles. To let the populace know that their city is not simply ready for solar power, but is ready to become what it was always supposed to become.

Second place -- and a $750 cash award -- goes to "Go Solar!", a fun video put together by the sixth-grade class headed up by Raquel Vargas at Micheltorena Elementary School in Echo Park. The video features a tour of the school's solar garden, a toast (with garden fruit smoothies made in a solar-powered blender) to the school's solar future, and then a toast to solar-powered toast. These kids are on to something: making solar power seem delicious is pretty brilliant.

The contestants were evaluated by a panel of three volunteer judges including TV personality Carter Oosterhouse, filmmaker Chris Paine, and actress Amy Smart, who chose the top three videos submitted. But there was also a "People's Choice" component, in which the video that got the most popular votes won special mention. The judges' Third Place pick -- which came with a $250 cash award -- also won the People's Choice nod, and ReWire can see why. It has the most completely adorable cast of any video we've seen lately, and that's saying something seeing as they were competing against Sophie the cat. Third Place and the People's Choice award in the contest went to the first grade classes of Claudia Diaz Vela and Sandra Proano Montañez at Plasencia Math and Science Magnet Center, with their video "Let's Go Solar: The Solution is in the Sky."

That's a pretty bright future, it seems to us. Congrats to all the winners.

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