First Place

Scottsboro Junior High School student Shelby Cooley won first place at the Alabama Junior Beta Convention after entering a quilt she made.

On her first trip to the Alabama Junior Beta Convention, Scottsboro Junior High School student Shelby Cooley brought home first place honors. 

She entered a unique quilt in the fiber arts competition.  The quilt also placed fifth in best of show.  The quilt is currently on display at the Scottsboro Public Library.

Cooley came up with the idea to do a Harry Potter themed quilt.  It didn’t matter to her that she did not know how to sew because she is a quick learner. 

She is a huge fan of the Harry Potter books, so she took this series that meant something to her.  If you have read the books, you know that in the end good triumphs over evil.

  “I have read all the books,” said Cooley.  “Why not put a piece of me that I admire in this, so I chose Harry Potter?”

With a sewing lesson from her grandmother, Cooley went to work.

“I saw this as an opportunity to learn to sew,” said Cooley. 

Cooley spent 44 hours hand sewing the quilt with measures 63 inches by 76 inches. The house symbols are on the back of the quilt, and the front is three-dimensional.

Cooley said that she was inspired to read by teacher Christi Turner.  That’s how she got hooked on Harry Potter.  Others she would like to thank for helping and encouraging her with this Junior Beta project include Sue DeWitt, Trina Giles, Shaley and Kyle Lewis, Brandy Whitmire, Cole Barclay, A. J. Petty from Scottsboro Junior High and Coach Terry Kennamer from Pisgah.

 “You should always do your best,” said Cooley.  “Make an effort to be kind no matter.”

Cooley will compete at the National Junior Beta Convention this summer.  That competition will take place in Oklahoma.

This talented young lady is making all A’s this year. This is her first year to be a member of Junior Beta Club.  She is vice president of the Art Club. 

Cooley is an avid reader, likes to draw and paint, and has done a little sculpting.

Cooley lives with her family on a farm near the Pisgah Gorge, so she has some daily chores to complete.  Her mom says she never complains. 

She just does what she needs to do.  One of the things this young lady enjoys is riding horses.  She is a six time state halter champion starting at the young age of four.

When many of her classmates are just rolling out of bed on a school day, Cooley and her mom are making their way down the mountain. She does not mind the drive. 

“I love being on the farm” said Cooley.  “I can’t imagine living anywhere else.”

It should come as no surprise that Shelby loves the outdoors.  She enjoys hiking and often reads outside.  She and her family have a pontoon boat, and she likes being on the river. 

She takes care of chickens that produce organic eggs.  You might see her if you visit the Farmer’s Market on Saturdays this summer.  She will have some eggs for sale.

Cooley has participated in softball, basketball, golf, and volleyball during her time at SJHS.  She also continues her love of showing horses. 

She is the granddaughter of the late legendary basketball coach Paul and Elizabeth Cooley.  Her parents are Caleb and Kellie Cooley.

Cooley plans to follow in her mom’s footsteps after high school.  Her mom is a retired nurse, and Shelby wants to become a nurse practitioner.  She already knows she will attend Jacksonville State University.

Why has Cooley chosen the medical career?  “I enjoy helping people,” she said. “You can make a difference in people’s lives and let them know you care if just for a moment.” 

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