RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Singing, dancing, poetry, painting and more filled McGuire Veterans Affairs Medical Center on Wednesday.

Local veterans from around Central Virginia competed to prepare for a national competition later in 2020.

Among the performances, a Samba Line Dance with Vaneada Harvey, Felicia Moore, Nancy King, M. Yvette Wright, Annette Morris, Francene Lance and Sandra Murcia. Vaneada Harvey also wowed the crowd with a rendition of Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition.”

Vaneada Harvey, Felicia Moore, Nancy King, M. Yvette Wright, Annette Morris, Francene Lance and Sandra Murcia perform a Samba line dance. Photo by Mary Beatty.
Vaneada Harvey performs Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition” for the crowd. Photo by Mary Beatty.

Sandra Murchia performed dramatic poetry entitled, “Homeless Vet.”

Sandra Murchia performs “Homeless Vet” for the solo dramatic poetry category. Photo by Mary Beatty.

There were two first-place winners among the art submissions. Joshua Zoeller earned the top prize for his drawing, “The Things a Combat Veteran Carries,” and Benjamin Ragland’s oil painting “Tree of Life” also earned a first-place ribbon.

Joshua Zoeller’s colored drawing, “The Things a Combat Veteran Carries.” Photo by Mary Beatty.
Benjamin Ragland’s oil painting “Tree of Life.” Photo by Mary Beatty.

Linwood Wright created a colorful acrylic painting entitled “Happy No PTSD.”

Linwood Wright’s “Happy No PTSD.” Photo by Mary Beatty.

Megan Kon, Public Affairs Specialist for the Central Virginia VA Health Care System, said an event like this is also a healing experience for these veterans.

This year, the national competition will be in St. Petersburg, Fl. from Nov. 28 to Dec. 5. and will include veterans from around the country.