Each year, a number of Central Texas organizations and individuals award generous special prizes to history fair competitors. Winners of these awards are selected according to criteria established by the sponsoring organizations, and projects are judged by representatives of the sponsors. Sponsors present their awards to the selected student winners during the awards ceremony at the conclusion of the fair.
The following organizations are Special Awards Sponsors of the Heart of Texas Regional History Fair:
Baylor Film and Digital Media
The Baylor Film and Digital Media Department Award recognizes achievement in the craft of filmmaking, including cinematography, sound, editing, and general production value, as well as excellence in storytelling. The award is given to outstanding projects in the Senior Individual and Group Documentary categories.
Baylor Law School
The Baylor Law School Award recognizes outstanding projects related to communication in the law among the junior individual and group exhibits and senior individual and group exhibits.
Baylor Opera Theater
The Baylor Opera Theater Department Award recognizes two outstanding projects from the Junior and Senior Individual and Group Performance categories for excellence in stagecraft and creativity and excellence in performance. Excellence in stagecraft recognizes achievement in conceiving, producing, and utilizing, physical materials to better communicate creative and story-based information. This can include historic era costuming, fantasy costuming, all props, and/or performance makeup. Excellence in performance recognizes achievement in stage presence, acting, singing, or dance; it identifies talent in communication of emotion and repartee with an audience.
Baylor University Institute for Oral History
The Baylor University Institute for Oral History Award recognizes outstanding oral history by students. Entrants must a) conduct at least three oral history interviews that relate directly to the topic and record historically-significant memories; b) audio or video tape the interviews; c) demonstrate ways information from the oral history interviews was used in their project; and d) list the interviews in the annotated bibliography.
Bell County Museum
The Bell County Museum Award recognizes outstanding projects from students hailing from Bell County in the junior individual and group documentary and senior individual and group documentary categories.
Colonial Dames of the XVII Century, Gov. Samuel Mathews Chapter
The Colonial Dames of the XVII Century Gov. Samuel Mathews recognizes the one best senior individual documentary or senior individual performance focusing on activities in the American colonies before 1700.
Daughters of the Republic of Texas, Sterling C. Robertson Chapter
The Daughters of the Republic of Texas, Sterling C. Robertson Chapter recognizes entries in the junior and senior divisions paper, individual and group documentary, and individual and group exhibit categories and in fifth grade individual and group exhibits that perpetuate the memory and spirit of men and women who achieved and maintained the independence of Texas.
Dr Pepper Museum and Free Enterprise Institute
The Dr Pepper Museum and Free Enterprise Institute Award recognizes one entry that showcases an individual, business, or company that exhibits an entrepreneurial spirit and experiences both the challenges and benefits of the American free enterprise economic system. Entries eligible for this award are fifth grade individual exhibits, junior and senior papers, and junior and senior individual exhibits.
Historic Waco Foundation
The Historic Waco Foundation Award recognizes best projects with considerable information representing historical events or connections to Waco or McLennan County, Texas. Information linking the project to the Waco–McLennan County region must be substantial, not just a mention of the place. Nominations for this award may be made for fifth grade individual or group exhibits, junior or senior papers, junior or senior individual or group exhibits, or junior or senior individual or group websites. Up to three awards may be made.
Jewel Moorman Memorial Award
The Jewel Moorman Memorial Award recognizes a project that best exemplifies the contributions and impact of Native Americans to the history of the United States, past and present. Categories eligible for this award are junior and senior, individual and group documentaries, exhibits, and performances.
McLennan County Historical Commission
The McLennan County Historical Commission strives to preserve the historical heritage of McLennan County, Texas. The McLennan County Historical Commission Award recognizes the best individual projects pertaining to a topic integral to the history of McLennan County. Two awards will be given for each division (fifth grade, junior, and senior) regardless of medium (documentaries, exhibits, papers, performances, or websites).
Museum Association of Waco
The Museum Association of Waco Award recognizes the best use of exhibit design and display among fifth grade, junior, and senior individual exhibits.
National Society of the Colonial Dames - Waco Town Committee
National Society of the Colonial Dames of America in Texas Waco Town Committee sponsors historic preservation, restoration, and interpretation projects, as well as scholarship programs, patriotic service, and educational projects. The award recognizes the paper, exhibit, performance, or documentary that focuses upon persons or events during the colonial era of US history.
National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Elizabeth Gordon Bradley Chapter
The National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Elizabeth Gordon Bradley Chapter Award recognizes one or two entries whose topics focus on people and/or events pertaining to the Revolutionary period in American history. All categories are eligible for this award.
National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Henry Downs Chapter
The National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Henry Downs Chapter Award recognizes the one best junior or senior individual documentary or junior or senior individual performance whose topic focuses on the period of the American Revolution, approximately 1776-1783.
Red Men Museum and Library
The Red Men Museum and Library Award recognizes one best entry on American patriotism from among all junior and senior division categories, both individual and group.
Texas German Society - Heart of Texas Chapter
The Texas German Society Heart of Texas Chapter Award recognizes the one best junior or senior paper or individual or group exhibit that focuses on any German or Texas-German subject.
The Links, Inc., Waco Chapter
The Waco Chapter of The Links, Inc., Award recognizes up to ten best exhibits, group or individual, fifth grade, junior, or senior divisions, that focuses on the historical impact of women or persons of African descent on America or other countries. Projects nominated for this award must demonstrate the following characteristics: 1) the reason or cause of the historical change; 2) the goal of the movement, including the process of striving to reach the goal and was it achieved; 3) the historical impact of the event or movement on the lives of people in the city, state, or country; 4) the quality of the research techniques used to document historical events; and 5) the ability of participants to verbalize information during the interview process.
The Texas Collection
The Texas Collection Award recognizes the one or two best junior or senior papers or individual or group documentaries or exhibits that display the best use of Texas primary source materials. Sources must be used in the presentation and noted on the annotated bibliography.
Waco Cotton Palace
Waco Cotton Palace, Inc. seeks to preserve the history of the city, particularly the time when Waco was known as the world’s “Cotton Capital.” Each year, Waco Cotton Palace stages an elaborate production that recognizes significant people in Waco’s history and important milestones, from its founding through the present day. The award recognizes the best individual entry across all categories that focuses on Texas history or significant milestones in the area of agriculture.
Waco Hispanic Museum
The Waco Hispanic Museum Award recognizes outstanding Junior and Senior Division Exhibits that exemplify and acknowledge the contributions that Hispanics have made in American History.
W.R. Poage Legislative Library
The W. R. Poage Legislative Library Award recognizes the entry in the paper category, in both the junior and senior divisions, that best highlights citizens exercising their rights in the democratic process.