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13th Annual Appalachian Mountain Photography Competition opens for submissions

BOONE—The 13th Annual Appalachian Mountain Photography Competition (AMPC) is open for registration and submissions. Amateur and professional photographers 13 years of age and older are encouraged to submit at prior to the competition’s close at 5 p.m. Friday, Nov. 20.

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AMPC offers numerous categories that will be chosen as winners with over $4,000 in cash and prizes. A panel of professional photographers will review all entries and select approximately 50 images that will be displayed in the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts, March 4-June 4, 2016. From those images, the judges will select the final winners, which will be showcased during the exhibition.

The annual competition is a partnership between Appalachian State University Outdoor Programs and the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts. It celebrates the people, places and pursuits that distinguish the Southern Appalachians and attracts entries from across the United States. The competition has grown into one the region’s most prestigious photography competitions with close to 1,000 submissions last year and viewed in person by more than 8,000 people at the Turchin Center for Visual Arts.

AMPC is made possible through the sponsorship of Virtual Blue Ridge, the premier online resource for the Blue Ridge Parkway, and the Mast General Store. Supporters of the AMPC include: Appalachian Voices, Bistro Roca, the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation, Footsloggers, Peabody’s, Nikon Professional Services and Stick Boy Bread Company.

“We are thrilled with the competition right now,” said Rich Campbell, associate director for Outdoor Programs at Appalachian and AMPC competition director. “Part of that excitement is our new website that has been redesigned from the ground up by sponsor Virtual Blue, offering photographers a more user-friendly experience. In addition to easier navigation, it also offers one click access to every finalist image from the past 12 years. We think that this archive of images is one of the most comprehensive galleries of the Southern Appalachians.”

Competition organizers are excited to announce this year’s Blue Ridge Parkway Category theme, sponsored by the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation and Nikon Professional Services: Blue Ridge Parkway — Where the Parkway Meets the Sky.

This year, photographers are encouraged to capture images that emphasize the sky, while incorporating some element of the Blue Ridge Parkway as well. Photographers can consider night shots, stars, unique cloud formations, interesting weather, sunsets or sunrise, a sky that represents the vastness of a long range overlook, etc. The winning image in this category will receive a $250 cash award, provided by the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation and, new this year, a camera from Nikon Professional Services.

Another category for the AMPC this year, highlighting the competition’s commitment of raising awareness of the natural environment through this competition, is the Our Ecological Footprint Category, which is intended to document environmental concerns in the Southern Appalachians. Photographers are encouraged to capture an image that represents the region’s ecological footprint in a creative and poignant way. Appalachian Voices and the Mast General Store are partnering to present this award which will go to the photographer who best captures the spirit of this category with a $500 prize package of cash and prizes.

Additional competition categories this year include Best in Show, which wins a $1,000 cash prize, the People’s Choice Award presented by Footsloggers which will receive a $350 gift certificate. The categories of Culture, Adventure, Flora and Fauna, and Landscape, will each win $250 prize packages from the Mast General Store.

In celebration of the 13th annual AMPC exhibition, the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts (TCVA) will host a new program open to all photographers who submit their artwork to the annual competition. In-person portfolio reviews will be available on a lottery system, which will give photographers a chance to have a one-on-one portfolio review with one of the professional photographers who are leading the reviews this year.

For more information about the competition, visit or call Outdoor Programs at 828-262-2475.