Winning Professional Photos of 2023 Florida State Parks Photo Contest

Florida State Parks Photo Contest Winners Announced

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Florida Park Service celebrates the announcement of the 2023 winners of the “Capture the Real Florida” State Parks Photo Contest.

The contest showcased the natural beauty of Florida through three categories: Professional/Hobbyist, Student, and Mobile Phone.

John Hootman secured the first place in the Professional/Hobbyist category with his “Morning Glow” masterpiece, taken at Manatee Springs State Park. His reward includes a $2,500 B&H Photo gift card and a plethora of Florida State Parks’ outdoor gear, including a paddleboard and a hammock, along with a Family Annual Entrance Pass.

Second place was awarded to Curt Mason for his “Blue Grace” photo, captured at Ichetucknee Springs State Park. Mason’s prize package mirrors Hootman’s, excluding the B&H Photo gift card.

Beverly Eaton’s “American Alligator Chill,” a serene depiction from Myakka River State Park, earned third place. Eaton, like Mason, received outdoor gear from Florida State Parks.

Chuck Hatcher, director of the Florida Park Service, expressed gratitude towards all participants and praised the winning photographs for encapsulating the essence of Florida’s diverse natural beauty. The competition, noted for its challenging selection process due to the high quality of submissions, celebrates the parks’ wildlife, flora, and unique geography.

Florida’s 175 state parks, trails, and historic sites provided the perfect canvas for nearly 3,800 submissions in the 2023 contest. Participants were encouraged to explore and capture the essence of the “Real Florida,” with the chance to win prizes and create lasting memories. Photographs of all winners may be viewed on the Photo Contest webpage. 

The contest highlighted the incredible diversity of Florida’s natural landscapes across 12 categories. These ranged from wildlife and landscapes to park experiences and adventures, showcasing the state’s beauty through various lenses.

In partnership with Tyler Technologies, the contest facilitated a secure way for visitors to engage with and book stays in Florida’s state parks, enhancing their experience and connection to nature.

Photography enthusiasts and nature lovers are already looking forward to the 2024 contest. It offers another opportunity to explore the beauty of Florida’s state parks and capture moments that highlight the state’s unparalleled natural environments.

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