The Friends of the Auburn Public Library hosted a reception for its first annual Beauty of Auburn Photo Contest.  There were about 35 entries from Auburn residents depicting everything from fall foliage to golf courses to the aftermath from the blizzard of ’13.

IMG_7697Chrsitine Rondeau, a Friends of the Library member and one of the event organizers was thrilled with the event.  “We had about 30 people here to view the photos.”  We were able to give away gift certificates from local restaurants. They were all very generous.”

Coco’s Tropical Ice, Bentley’s Pub, 99 Restaurant, Heritage Coffee Shop and Starbuck’s donated to the event.

Library director Diane Ramsay echoed Rondeau’s sentiments. “We are very pleased with the turnout.  We got more entries than we thought, and the quality is just wonderful.”

Doug Anderson, a local artist and one of the judges said choosing winners was a difficult task.  “We all agreed on a couple, debated a couple, but they are all good.”  Asked what he was looking for when judging picture, Anderson said “Something that jumps out a bit.”

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Contestant Tessa Podolak’s entries. The leaf (top right) was an award-winner.

One of the winners was Tessa Podolak, a homeschooled student from Auburn.  “I have been taking a photography class, and then heard about the contest.” Podolak entered two photos of horses, one of Pakachoag Golf Course, one of The Hot Dog Shop and, the eventual winner, a close-up of a leaf.

There was no limit to the numbers of entries one could register, nor was there a formal entry fee.  The Friends of the Library suggested for a small donation for each photo entered, but it was not mandatory.

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Barbara Ela’s winning entry.

Another entrant with several entries was winner Barbara Ela.  Mrs. Ela entered 7 photos, of which her sailboat photo took a prize.  “I took that one with a cell phone camera” she said of the striking, colorful image.  Her other photos mostly depicted images and life around Dark Brook Reservoir where they live.

Lisa and Tim Onderdonk saw a poster for the event at Coco’s Tropical Ice and decided to enter some photos of their own.  Lisa won a prize for her photo of a Rose of Sharon (which had been taken down before we had a chance to photograph it, but take my word that it was a lovely picture).  Lisa often photographs the flowers in her yard. “I’m not really a gardener.  The flowers were here when we bought the house. ”  But she and her husband have done a great job capturing the blooms on film.

Library Director Diane Ramsey indicated her hope that this becomes an annual event. “It went well.  I think it will grow every year, as word of mouth spreads.”