Mayor's Office

Mayor's Art & Poetry Contest


Every year Mayor Patricia Lock Dawson launches the Mayor’s Art Contest where Riverside high school students are encouraged to create a piece of art or a poem that celebrates Riverside!

Create a piece of art or a poem that celebrates Riverside!  Look to Riverside/s past, its present or imagine its future. Anything that inspires you to depict our beautiful city in art or words will work!


2024 Deadline & Judging

  1. All artwork and poetry must be submitted by Friday, April 19, 2024, and winners will be announced Tuesday, April 30, 2024. Artwork and poetry must be completely original and be accompanied by a signed submission form. A reception for the winners will be held on May 15th, 2024, 5:00 PM at the Grier Pavilion at Riverside City Hall. 
  2. Work can be handed in or submitted online. Work can be uploaded to: (Please note that should your work be chosen as a finalist, we will ask for the original piece and signed submission form to be turned in). 
  3. Pieces may be dropped off at any of the following locations:
  4. Digital art (artwork made by using computer software or other electronic devices) can be uploaded to:
  5. Your artwork must be accompanied by a signed entry form with title of work and short statement (see attached Entry Form)



For more information contact:

Kathy Allavie
(951) 784-7377 
[email protected] 

Mayor's Office
Neyamavu Montgomery
(951) 826-5551


Guidelines for Art

Your artwork can be a drawing, painting, watercolor, pastel, collage, photograph, mixed-media work, digital or any other kind of 2-dimensional artwork, or a 3-dimensional piece including sculpture, ceramics, mosaic or other 3-dimensional work. All work must be ORIGINAL and must not copy or incorporate another person’s artwork or concept. 

•  Artwork must be no larger than 24” X 24” (2-Dimensional) or 12” X 12” (3-Dimensional).

•  Artwork must be submitted by the deadline of April 19, 2024, 5:00 PM, at the three aforementioned drop-off locations or digitally through the bitly site. (See previous paragraph).

•  Artwork must be related to the theme of “Riverside” and adherence to the theme is a part of the judging criteria.

• Your artwork must be accompanied by a signed submission form with a title of the work and a short statement. (See attached Entry Form). 

•  Be original—do not infringe on anyone’s copyright.

•  Artwork will become the property of the City of Riverside if it is chosen as a winning piece. After a display period it might be returned to the student or added to the City’s collection. If it is returned to the student the City of Riverside relinquishes all rights to the piece. The artist and teacher will be credited when displayed or used. All other work will be returned to the student’s teacher.

Guidelines for Poetry Submissions 

Inlandia Institute and ARTS NOW Riverside invite City of Riverside high school students to enter their best poem for the Mayor’s Poetry Contest.

How to submit:

•  Include one poem inspired by the City of Riverside in a Word document (.doc or .docx). Your poem should celebrate something about Riverside through your words. Your poem can be uploaded to

•  Please be sure to include the author’s name, phone number, email address, teacher’s name (either Language Teacher or the teacher who encouraged you to enter), school and grade on the poem sheet as well as the entry form.

•  Poem should be formatted to fit on one side of one 8.5” X 11” (standard size) piece of paper in Times New Roman 12 pt or equivalent.

•  Along with the poem, please submit an artist statement of up to 50 words through the entry form:


One poem and one artwork will be selected by the Mayor of Riverside, Patricia Lock Dawson, and a panel of judges, as the Grand Prize Winners. First-place winners and additional honorable mention awards will also be given as judges deem best.

Grand Prize Winners and their teachers will each receive $100.00.

First place winners and their teachers will receive $50. 

2nd or 3rd prize winners, if applicable, will receive $25 for themselves and their teachers. Other prizes will be given by virtue of the entries.


All prize winners are invited to attend a special May 15th, 2024, reception at Riverside City Hall with Mayor Patricia Lock Dawson. This event will take place on the 7th floor Grier Pavilion from 5:00-6:00 PM. The address is 3900 Main Street, Riverside, CA 92501. Light refreshments will be served, and all prize-winning works will be displayed. Invitations to this reception will also be emailed to the email address provided on the Entry Form.

This contest is sponsored by the City of Riverside in partnership with ARTS NOW Riverside and Inlandia Institute.