That's a Lot of Ketchup

Condiment art contest brings 10-year-old into spotlight

Fame and notoriety come in many different packages.  In the case of a girl from Vernon Hills, her package may end up being in the form of a condiment.

Ten-year-old Lauren Lum, of Townline Elementary School, was chosen as one of 36 finalists from 45,000 entries in a H.J. Heinz Company competition to design ketchup packets.

Her design depicts a cowboy-hat wearing ketchup bottle atop a rearing horse.

Lum, who is described as a shy fourth-grader, got involved in the contest through her art teacher, Lisa Carter.

Carter gives private lessons out of her Libertyville home and said that she's always looking for contests for her students. 

Lum has been taking art classes for a number of years, but says she considers it a hobby. Her real passion is animals, which served as an inspiration in her cowboy ketchup creation.

Judges will chose three finalists in each grade, 1 through 12. Winners in each category will have their artwork stamped on limited edition packets of Heinz ketchup, the Daily Herald reported Friday.

Lots of packets -- about 20 million of the little buggers for each winner.

A spokeswoman for Heinz said, "They are definitely in general circulation. It can be in at institutions, schools or restaurants."

The winners -- who'll be announced in April -- get $1,000.  Since Carter entered Lum from Townline, the school also would get $1,000 cash for art supplies and $1,000 worth of ketchup if the fourth-grader wins.

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