Which fancy feet are worth a cool $50,000? Help decide by voting for your favorite customized Vans

John P. Stevens High School’s winning designs
The diner-themed shoe designs submitted by John P. Stevens High School of Edison, N.J., won top honors in the 2016 Vans Custom Culture competition. Voting is open through May 10 to winnow the 2017 pool of 50 semifinalists down to five finalists.
(Vans Inc.)

High schools from across the country have put their best feet forward — in the form of customized Vans shoes — in an annual competition that will land one lucky team a $50,000 donation to its school art program.

Vans, the Cypress, Calif.-based action sports brand, has winnowed the field of 3,000 entrants down to 50 semifinalists. Now it’s asking the general public to step up and vote to determine which five teams will compete as finalists, according to a media release from Vans, which is working in partnership with Laguna College of Art + Design, Americans for the Arts, Blick Art Materials and Journeys on the contest.

Public voting for the 2017 Vans Custom Culture finalists started Wednesday and will continue through May 10 here. There are 10 semifinalist teams in each of five geographic regions, and each voter is allowed to cast one vote per region per day for their favorite shoe designs.

The 10 semifinalist teams in the California region hail from Bonita High School (La Verne), C.K. McClatchy High School (Sacramento), Irvington High School (Fremont), Pomona Catholic Girls High School, the Preuss School (La Jolla), Rubidoux High School (Jurupa Valley), San Pasqual High School (Escondido), Sherman Indian High School (Riverside), Whitney High School (Rocklin) and Will C. Wood High School (Vacaville).


The top five finalists from the public vote will travel to Los Angeles on an all-expenses-paid trip, where their designs will be judged by a panel of notable judges.

On June 7, one grand-prize-winning team will receive a $50,000 grant to their high school’s art program, and the four runners-up will receive $4,000 each toward theirs.

For more musings on all things fashion and style, follow me at @ARTschorn.



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