In recognition of the importance of forests to the health and well being of society, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has announced a contest to celebrate New York’s forests. The contest is designed to increase awareness of and appreciation for all types of forests, urban and rural, large and small, public and privately owned, across the state.
“The value of our forests cannot be underestimated,” Commissioner Joe Martens said in a prepared statement. “In addition to providing clean air, clean water and places for wildlife to live, thousands of people are employed in the forest products, outdoor recreation and tourism industries, thanks to New York’s wealth of forest.”
In the 19th century conservationists recognized the importance of nature as a refuge from the noise and bustle of city life. Modern technology has disconnected many people from the outdoors. Virtual pastimes now rival natural, outdoor activities. Taking and sharing pictures is one of the most popular activities in this country. Through this contest, New Yorkers are encouraged to reconnect with the natural world.
Submitted photos should capture all aspects of forests and trees in five different categories:
1. Nature (wildlife, plants, natural landscapes, etc.)
2. Enjoying the forest (hunting, fishing, trails, camping, hiking, etc.)
3. Trees where we live (parks, streets, yards, etc.)
4. Forest products (maple syrup, lumber, baseball bats, furniture, etc.)
5. State-owned Forests (State Forests, Forest Preserve lands, forested Wildlife Management Areas, Campgrounds)
Contest details, rules and necessary forms can be found on DEC’s website.
Photos must be taken in New York State. Photos will be accepted through November 1, 2011. A maximum of three photos may be submitted by a photographer, each with a submission form found on the DEC website, via e-mail or on a CD via regular mail. DEC has non-exclusive rights to use submitted photos on DEC’s website, in the Conservationist magazine, in brochures and in other publications promoting forests and DEC. The photographer will retain ownership of the photo.
The winner in each category will receive a framed print of their photo. Winning photos will be announced on or about December 1, 2011.
Photo: State Forest Boundary Sign Near Ticonderoga (John Warren Photo).