YORK COUNTY – From expansive coastal beaches to scenic rocky mountaintops, the MtA2C region is nothing short of photogenic. Thanks to participants of the 2016 MtA2C “Through Your Eyes” photography contest, dozens of beautifully candid scenes from the region have been captured for the public to enjoy. MtA2C will use the images in materials to help spread awareness of its mission to connect and protect land in southern York County.
The photo contest ran from July through Oct. 15, and winners were announced during the second week in November. Participants submitted dozens of photographs to the contest, which included three award categories: People on the Land, Wildscapes, and People’s Choice Award. MtA2C’s Facebook community voted on the People’s Choice Award winner, while a panel of judges selected the other two winners.
Wildscapes award winner Chuck Maranhas of York happened upon an unusual scene of fog rolling in on the top of Mt. Agamenticus on a July evening while trying to capture a shot of the sunset. “I was hoping to get a good cloud formation with the sunset,” Maranhas said. But, to his surprise, the fog crept up and made for a stunning, dynamic shot. Minutes after he captured the moment, the incoming fog had engulfed the summit.
Eleven-year-old Lucia Wiegert of South Berwick won the People on the Land Award for a photo she took of her younger sister staring up the trunk of a large tree in the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge in Wells. Wiegert says her sister has a big imagination and likes to pretend that trees are giants, inspiring Wiegert to title her photo BFT – Big Friendly Tree in reference to Roald Dahl’s book “The BFG (Big Friendly Giant).”
Wiegert, who aspires to be a professional nature photographer, says she spends lots of time outdoors and that Rachel Carson is one of her favorite places to explore. “Every time we go there we see something new because there is so much to explore,” Wierget said. “It’s a beautiful, beautiful preserve. If it wasn’t preserved, I don’t think anyone would get to experience the beauty of it.”
Kevin Galliford of Plainville, Conn., won the People’s Choice Award with his photo of Ogunquit Beach at sunset. Galliford, a TV photo journalist for a local station in Hartford, Conn., says he used a slow shutter speed to capture the motion of the smoothly rolling waves. He says organizations like MtA2C are important in preserving natural landscapes, especially during this time of enhanced development across coastal New England. “It’s pretty important to keep some parts of the land from being developed, for people to go hiking and for tourism” Galliford said.
Though Galliford lives in Connecticut, he usually travels to Ogunquit three or four times each summer to enjoy the beach and local restaurants. “We like the beach, it’s huge and not too rocky,” said Galliford. “There’s tons of stuff to do up that way.”
Winners of these awards will receive a framed print of their photograph, a membership to a MtA2C partner organization, and a box of stationary showcasing selections from the contest. Galliford also wins a kayak trip for two at Wells Reserve at Laudholm for his People’s Choice Award.
MtA2C (Mount Agamenticus to the Sea Conservation Initiative) is an alliance of 10 conservation organizations working together to keep the Mount Agamenticus region a healthy place for plants, animals and people. Learn more at www.mta2c.org.