Yosemite Explorer 2008 New Year's Photo Contest: Win a Night at Tenaya Lodge

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This New year, resolve to win the Yosemite Explorer New Year's Photography Contest! Round up your best two Yosemite pictures and send 'em in. You could win a night at Tenaya Lodge (something like a $330 value I think).

Why this contest? Why that prize?

Last year I won the end of the season ski race at the Badger Pass Spring Fling and the prize was a fully transferable gift certificate for a free night at Tenaya Lodge, a luxury hotel on the southern border of Yosemite National Park.

I have no interest in staying in a hotel so close to home, and every time I offer it to a friend or family, they always prefer to stay with us. Now the expiration is approaching (voucher expires April 27, 2008). So I started thinking. It happens sometimes. In this particular case, I was thinking I might sell it on EBay, then I thought a photo contest would be much more fun. Then for the past couple of months I keep saying I'll announce it as soon as I get the site fixed up to take submissions. That's not going to happen, I realized, so submissions will be via email (see below) and I'll just post them manually. I'm hoping this will be fun, that I'll get a handfull of submissions (but not a huge flood) and it will be a good chance for an amateur photographer who loves Yosemite to win a contest.

What's the second prize?

Unless you're donating it, nothing.

Who can enter?

Please, amateurs only. If you have sold more than say $1000 in photographs last year, please don't enter. I don't expect any professionals would enter, but you never know.

How do I enter?

Simple. Just send up to two photos to yoguide AT gmail DOT com (obviously you need to reformat that to [email protected]). You can send your photos either as an attachment, or simply a URL to a Flickr photo if you wish, but if you do the latter, understand that I will be putting a copy of it on my website so that the link doesn't break later and it will be subject to the guidelines below. Put the phrase "photography contest entry" in the subject line. That is not a hard and fast requirement, but if your email gets caught in my spam catcher and lost forever, that's not my problem. I don't read my email every day or even every other day, so you may not get an immediate response. Your photos must meet the following guidelines:

  • No more than 1000 pixels in the largest dimension.
  • No more than 1MB file size.
  • JPEGs only
  • You must own the copyright to it.
  • You grant me permission to show the photo in the special gallery for the 2008 contest and understand that it may also appear in the random image blocks in the sidebar and elsewhere on the site in reduced sizes. Your photo will not be used in any other way without your permission and your name and copyright information will remain attached to the full-size image.
  • It must be of the Yosemite area. That should be obvious. I don't want to be uptight about it: the east ridge of Mt Conness would be fair game, but Mount Whitney definitely is not. Sonora Pass definitely is not.
  • It must be labelled with a location. If they are different, it must be labelled with the location of the subject as well as of the photographer. Include that information in the text of your email and do me a favor and name your file something like lyell-from-dana.jpg, not DSC00001232.jpg
  • Include in your email what you want the copyright notice to read (i.e. ©Tom Lambert, 2007). Yosemite Explorer is not responsible for violations of copyright caused due to posting your picture on the net (which is another reason for keeping the image size down).

Who will be judging this?

Our esteemed panel of judges is so esteemed, they get their own page.

Where can I see the entries

There is a special photo gallery for the contest

What's the deadline for entry?

All submissions must be received by January 6, 2008 at the latest. I am not anticipating many entries (I'm just hoping there will be more than one entry at this point), but I've never done anything like this before, so I am offering myself a failsafe. In event that there is some huge deluge of submissions, I may have to cut it off earlier. I'll promise to accept the first 100 entries (first 200 photos) regardless. I'm not expecting that many submissions, but I just want an out if handling them turns into a full-time job. If I can be efficient at uploading the pictures and there is a deluge, I'll keep going past the 100 entries.

What if I'm the only one who enters

Congratulations! You win. Just remember to say nice things about me.

When will the winner be announced?

I'll announce a winner on January 15, 2008. That will still give the winner over four months to use the voucher.

How do I keep up on the contest news?

Two ways. You can do the old fashioned way and keep checking back to this page. That, however, is a hassle. The much easier way is to simply sign up for my RSS feed. Don't know what RSS is? Basically, it's sort of like getting email when a new article gets added, but better. With an email subscription, the sender has your email address. With RSS, they have no information about you and you remain in total control (you pull the info from them rather than having them push it to you). With email, it all lands in your inbox. With RSS, it's all sorted by source. Most email readers also have RSS feed readers built in, so you probably own a reader already. Thunderbird, Windows Live Mail and others have it. You can also download the Google Reader, which does nothing but check your subscription. In Windows Vista, you can have your feeds delivered to a sidebar widget. This is the easiest way to keep up with what's happening not just on this site but any site (I subscribe to probably 25 feeds).

What if I don't want to stay at Tenaya Lodge? Can I sell the gift certificate?

Well, legally, yes, but I could do that right now. What can I say, I'll be sorely disappointed. I would really like to see this go to someone who wants it. If you win and don't want it, the glory and fame will still be yours, but I would hope, pray and beg that you would be gracious enough to pass on the massive riches and offer the night's lodging up to the runner-up. I want to keep it fun! You will still be credited as the winner even if you give it away.

Are there any restrictions on the use of the voucher?

Yes there are:

  • Must be used before April 27, 2008
  • Reservations cannot be made more than 90 days prior to arrival.
  • Hotel occupancy cannot be over 90%. I was told that this basically means that they can't be over 90% booked at the time you try to make a reservation.
  • Holiday excluded. You might be able to sweet talk your way past this depending on occupancy. I thought I was going to use this once and they seemed willing to bend a little, depending on what the actual situation as the hotel is.
  • Reservations required.

Is there anything you've left out?

Almost certainly. Like I said, I've never done anything like this before. If you have a question, you can email at the same address: yoguide AT gmail DOT com.

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