Thankful for Parks: Amateur Photography Show & Contest

All photos tell a story. Whether you are a child taking a photo for a first time, a hiker using your phone camera, or a lifelong photographer, we want to see the parks through your lens!

Show us how much you love the parks by submitting your photos of them for the Thankful for Parks: Amateur Photography Show! All submissions will be displayed for a month at Eastman Nature Center. Each photograph (maximum 3/person) will be entered into a random prize drawing for adult and youth divisions and will be eligible to receive the People's Choice Award, voted upon by the viewing public during the duration of the show.

Submission deadline: Monday, November 15, 2021
Show opens: Tuesday, November 23, 2021
Show closes: Monday, December 20, 2021

Entry Form | Submission Guidelines and Rules

Entry Categories

Share how nature and being outdoors has inspired or soothed you. Photos will be organized into the following categories:

  • Recreation and Community
  • Wildlife
  • Plants and Fungi
  • Landscapes
  • Seasons


Each photo submitted (maximum 3 per person) is one entry for the prize drawing in either the Adult or Youth (under 18) divisions.

  • Adult: One seasonal recreation pass of your choice for a Three Rivers activity
  • Youth: Choice of free rental of Eastman's outdoor classroom and fire pit or four free passes for snowshoe rentals from Eastman

Ballots for the People's Choice Award will be available at Eastman throughout the duration of the photography show. Results will be tallied when the show is over and announced before the end of the year. No tangible prizes will be awarded, but recognition will be given.

Contest Rules

  1. Amateur* photographers only.
  2. Photographs must be taken at a Three Rivers Park District site or feature scenery, vegetation, or wildlife that would normally be found in the parks.
  3. Other than cropping, photographs should not be modified in any way.
  4. All photos must be submitted as a digital file.
  5. Entrants must complete an entry form when submitting their photographs. There is a limit of three photos per person. 
  6. Photographs featuring domestic animals, garden plants and annual flowers are not eligible in the Wildlife and Plant categories.
  7. Landscapes and Seasons photographs may have contemporary, human-made objects (i.e. bridges, buildings, fences) or domestic animals, but they must not be the main focus of the picture.
  8. Photographs submitted in the Recreation/Community category should feature outdoor activities and Three Rivers sites.
  9. All photographs are equally eligible and count as one entry for the random prize drawing and one entry for the People's Choice Award in either the youth (under 18) or adult divisions.
  10. Submitted photographs may be used, with photo credit, in publications and displays used by Three Rivers Park District throughout the Twin Cities area, unless otherwise noted on the entry form.
  11. This contest is for fun and prizes are modest.
  12. All entries will be printed by the Park District and become the property of Three Rivers Park District. If you mark "no" to marketing use on your entry form, the print will be destroyed following the contest. 
  13. Three Rivers Park District employees and immediate family members are not allowed to enter.

*An amateur photographer is anyone who does not earn a significant amount of money as a photographer. We realize some amateur photographers have professional skills. Please use discretion in deciding if you should enter this contest. As a guideline, if you earn over $1,000 a year in photographic sales, you should not consider yourself an amateur for purposes of this contest.

Fees and How to Submit

Submit Digitally

$5/photo ($2 entry fee plus $3 for printing/handling)

1. Prepare your photos

  • Select up to three unmodified digital images (OK to crop/clean, adjust minimally).
  • Please rename your digital file(s) in this format if you are able:
    • LASTNAME FIRSTINITIAL 2021 2-3 short, descriptive words
    • Example: DOE J 2021 Pretty Rock
  • If you CANNOT rename your file, please complete the title on the entry form in this format for each image to make it easier for us to correctly label after download.

2. Submit your entry

  • Download and fill out your entry form.
  • Start an email to with the subject "Photo Show Entry."
  • Attach your digital image(s) and a completed entry form and send before noon on Monday, November 15.

3. Submit your payment