‘Westport Mural’ by Katherine Clark was the winner in the Towns and Villages category of the CATS photo and caption contest.
Three entries were named tops in their division as part of the latest photo and caption contest put on by Champlain Area Trails.
Judged by Cal State Fullerton communications professor Paul Martin Lester, winners were chosen in three categories: scenic and nature, towns and villages, and trails.
CATS Executive Director Chris Maron said Lester was inspired by the pictures he judged.
“They inspired (him) to write, ‘Folks really love where you live,’ And we do,” Maron said.
CATS announced the seven winners in its Photo and Caption Contest at the beginning of a trail project to create a trail connecting Wadhams to Whallonsburg Jan. 18. Maron showed the winning pictures, read parts of the captions, and congratulated winners in the contest’s three categories.
Winners received $150 in each of the three categories. They included Cynthia Stacey, whose submitted her husband’s, Randy, photo entitled “Painted Heavens,” winning in the scenic and nature category. Stacey lives in Gainesville, Fla., and spent summers at her grandmother’s camp.
“Summers at Grandmother’s camp in Ferrisburgh, Split Rock Mountain was our constant view,” Stacey wrote in her caption. “When broad lake was calm, we’d boat along the base of the its undeveloped shoreline. Oh, how I longed to explore this beautiful inaccessible mountain! Fast forward 40 years: it’s been a delight and privilege to experience the miles of trails of Split Rock Mountain Wild Forest. On October 2013’s busiest foliage weekend, we sought refuge there. A spot of sun piercing the dense forest drew our eyes upward, and my husband caught this painting of the heavens, one of many moments of incomparable peace and beauty.”
Bethany Teitelbaum, who lives in Cranbury, N.J., and vacations in Essex, hiked up the Gilligan Mountain Trail with her husband to see the beautiful views of the Dix Range. Sitting on the rocky outcrop, they played, “Name that Peak” and took the first place picture.
“It was a mild November morning when my husband and I decided to pack a lunch and hike the CAT’s Gilligan trail,” Teitelbaum said. “CAT’s description of beautiful views of the Dix Range lured us onto Gilligan and to it’s ridge. We had hiked the Dix Range (Macomb, South Dix, East Dix and Hough) only a few months earlier and were excited to take in the promised view. We were not disappointed! Sitting on the rocky outcropping, we played “Name That Peak” and vowed to return in the Fall to witness mother nature’s foliage extravaganza in this intimate mountain setting.”
In the towns and villages category, former Denton Publications reporter Katherine Clark received top honors for, “Westport Mural.”
“Right after I moved to Westport, a town I had driven through hundreds of times throughout my life, I knew I had dramatically overlooked a gem in the Adirondacks,” Clark said in her caption. “Walking along the sidewalks, I found Ballard Park, with it’s grand theater pavilion shielded from the view of travelers along Route 9. The beautiful mural near the telephone company and many other surprises made the town feel like a home before I even met anyone who lived there. My friend Marie came to town from Burlington and fell in love with the place right alongside me. It’s made me think twice about stopping in more towns I’ve always just driven through.”
Three People’s Choice winners were also selected, each receiving $100. They included Aran Voss-Hutchins, “Champlain Sunrise,” Barbara Beebe-Brassard’s “Moriah Town Hall, and John Zurlo’s “Overcoming Fear.”
“We thank all the people who entered the contest, voted, looked at the pictures, and support saving land and making trails,” Maron said.
The winning and runners-up photos can be seen at champlainareatrails.com.