Thanks to everyone who entered the Albany Visitors Association 2022 Photo Contest, and we are excited to announce the winners!
See the video of the winners below (LINK after the list). The video may also be viewed on YouTube and at thePix Theatre before feature films. The following photographs and many more may also be viewed on the AVA FLICKR site.
Thanks again to all who entered the contest and we hope to see your new photographs next year.
The winners of the 15th Annual Albany Visitors Association Photography Contest are:
Champion – “Summer Cousins,” by Hannah Darling
Reserve Champion – “Dahlia Field,” Millersburg by Dave Maestas
People’s Choice, – “Water, Water, Everywhere,” Koosah Falls by Dave Taube
Student – “Icarus Mural” by Mikayla Chaffins
1st Place – “Can’t Hardly Wait,” by Jolene Thomson
2nd Place – “Oregon Wine Country,” by Hannah Darling
3rd Place – “Tet Treats,” by Stephanie Low
1st Place – “Auto Show at Linn Co Expo Center,” by Dave Maestas
2nd Place – “Cumberland on the Move,” by Camron Settlemier
3rd Place – “Always Remember,” by Camron Settlemier
1st Place – “Snow at Central School,” by Melinda Martin
2nd Place – “Hoffman Bridge,” by Dave Maestas
3rd Place – “Tulips,” by Camron Settlemier
1st Place – “Carousel & Museum,” by Dave Maestas
2nd Place – “Only in Albany,” by Stephanie Low
3rd Place – “Porky Departing the Station,” by Camron Settlemier
1st Place – “Splash!” by Stephanie Low
2nd Place – “Hug a Tree,” by Melinda Martin
3rd Place – “Fall in the Park,” by Katrina Wilson
1st Place – “Sunrise Over Downtown Albany” by Loretta Robinson
2nd Place – “Timber Linn Park Pond,” by Ron Sanders
PURPOSE:The purpose of this contest is to find images suitable for use in the marketing program for Albany, Linn County and the Willamette Valley.
We ask that your work specifically feature Albany and surrounding Linn County. The images we most commonly use in our publications, advertisements and social media feature people enjoying life in our area.
We know visitors want to see images of people relishing fantastic food and drink (micro-breweries, distilleries, winemakers), participating in events (Art & Air, shows at the Expo Center), having a great time outdoors (hiking, biking, and paddling in our parks and around town) and enjoying the beauty and majesty of our city’s historic architecture! PLEASE NOTE: all photos depicting water recreation must be compliant with life jacket laws.
Since it can be hard to get just the right shot with people, consider staging something with people you know. That way it’s easy to have them complete the model release form. Please be safe and abide by COVID safety guidelines.
Photograph image resolution, size & shape
Photos should be large file sizes (biggest size image setting on your camera, 300 dpi and 1MB minimum in size). Photos should be standard rectangular portrait or landscape; square, panoramic or custom ratios are more difficult to place within our ads.
Images that have digitally applied effects (such as montages, double exposures or vignettes) cannot be used in AVA publications or national advertising.
Photograph Subject Categories – sometimes we will recommend that an image be placed in a category different than the one you submit
Culinary: We live in the proverbial bread-basket of culinary delights: farm-to-table special dinners; farmer’s markets; renowned and award-winning chefs; cozy coffee houses and bakeries; wineries and breweries; German and Hungarian restaurants. Our city bubbles over with bounty. Visit a local restaurant or a unique foodie or drink venue and let people know what delicious rewards await them. Attend the farmer’s market and capture the bounty.
Events: Remember you can use photos from 2020, 2021, or 2022.
Historic Albany: If you live in Albany, you know that we have deep historical roots. Our city has four nationally recognized historic districts. Albany’s architectural styles vary from the mid- 1800s to the 1950s. Grab a copy of “Seems Like Old Times” and document your personal visual tour or join us on one of the seasonal guided tours. We need images from all seasons so consider revisiting your favorite place at different times of the year!
Landmarks: What is your landmark when you tell friends to meet you in Albany? Is it the Historic Carousel or maybe the clock tower at the Albany Train Station? A landmark is unique to Albany and lends itself to the quintessential identity of our city. Even an old building with a Victorian painted advertisement on a brick wall or a statue could be a landmark.
People: Visitors love to see people enjoying themselves, but we know it can be hard to get the shot right and get strangers to sign release forms. Consider enlisting your family and friends at a picnic in your favorite Albany park or enjoying a meal from your favorite restaurant.
Scenic: Visit our parks, the Willamette River, hiking trails, vineyards and surrounding rural vistas and urban hideaways. Find something you think will make someone want to come visit us and represents the unique charm of our region. Rustic barns, farm stands, bountiful gardens, wildflowers and wildlife, the Willamette Valley with distant snow-capped mountains. This category includes last year’s “Life in the Community” category.
Student: For young photographers ages 18 and under.
A committee of judges will (anonymously) assess photos for subject and composition. Judges will consider some of the following criteria: is the subject appropriate for the category, is it a really good/unusual example of that subject, is the composition in focus, does it draw you in, is it original? Judges will determine Champion and Reserve Champion winners and People’s Choice will be judged on the AVA Flickr site (if you sign in) or on Facebook.
Winners will be announced in March 2022. Winning photographs will be showcased in a professional video shown at the Pix Theatre before feature films following the contest, on the AVA website and YouTube and displayed at the Albany Amtrak Station. There will not be an in-person awards presentation this year.
Champion, Reserve Champion, and People’s Choice awards will be $225, $150 and $75, respectively. All first-place through third-place winners will receive a certificate and a gift card to the Pix Theatre to see their photos on the big screen.
Who can enter?
The contest is open to all ages, all levels: from amateur to professional or hobbyist.
How to Enter:
Email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will send you the online entry form through Survey Monkey – you do not need a subscription to use the survey. You do need the following rules and forms:
33rd Annual Night Time Magic Holiday Light Contest
And the winners are …
“Santa’s Beat Shop” – 4195 Madrona Pl. SE, Albany, OR 97322
“The Tree of Lights” – 4203 Winners Circle Ave. SE, Albany, OR 97322
“Bringing Joy For All to See” – 3849 Oakmont Loop NE, Albany, OR 97322
“Historic Elegance” – 914 5th Ave SW, Albany, OR 97321
The 1st Place winning prize package includes a night stay at the Phoenix Hotel, Carousel party room reservation, dinner at Sybaris as well as gift certificates for Bodhi Bakery, Urban Ag Supply, Midway Farms and Southpaws/Shortstops.
Winners will be entitled to bragging rights for the entire year and will receive an Award Certificate and various gift cards that may include the following local businesses: Phoenix Inn, Historic Carousel & Museum, Sybaris Bistro, The Natty Dresser, Novak’s Hungarian Restaurant, The Pix Theatre, Bodhi Bakery, Urban Ag Supply, Midway Farms, and Shortstop/Southpaws Perfect Pizza.
Thank you to all the homeowners who participate in this program. Without your efforts, this wonderful community tradition would not be possible.
Thank you also to our sponsors Burcham’s Metals, Robyn vanRossmann, Broker from Town & Country Realty, and Hospitality Vision for helping to light up Albany!
How YOU can vote for your favorite:
The 2020 Night Time Magic Holiday Light Contest is ON! 26 houses and businesses throughout Albany are decked out in holiday themes honoring “Cherished Traditions in a New Light.” You can marvel at the abundance of lights, the heights achieved and yes, a meme for this oh-so-special year 2020. YOU can help choose the winners! You can get a list of participants three ways:
The Albany Visitors Association is helping to make the season bright by coordinating the 33rd Annual Night Time Magic Holiday Light Contest, which kicks off December 7. Burcham’s Metals, Robyn vanRossmann, Broker from Town & Country Realty, and Hospitality Vision are proud to be the premier sponsors agreeing that this year, perhaps more than ever, people are in need of a little more light to brighten the dark days of winter and lift their spirits. Residents are encouraged to enter the contest for the best use of lights in decorating the exterior of their homes for everyone to enjoy. The winners will be entitled to bragging rights for the entire year and will receive some great prizes.
This year’s theme is “Cherished Traditions in a New Light” and participants are encouraged to share the source for their inspiration, such as: a family tradition, favorite holiday book, movie or special, music, dance, art or a special collection using lights, lights and more lights.
Judging this year will be open to our community. Pictures of entries will be posted on the AVA Facebook page and addresses will be included for people to drive by. A holiday light drive will be posted on the Albany Explorer App via Google Map and community members can vote for their favorites via Facebook or by contacting the Albany Visitors Association. Voting will open on December 10 and continue through December 20, 2020. Prizes will include a Party Room Rental provided by the Albany Historic Carousel & Museum, A night stay at a local hotel, pizza from Southpaws Pizza & Sports bar, and gift certificates from local businesses like Midway Farms and Bodhi Bakery.
Entries must be within the City limits of Albany.
To enter, email a picture of your completed lights to email@example.com, by 5pm Monday, December 7th, (photo not required for entry but greatly increases the chances of winning based on FB likes)
Entries must include: Participants name, Commercial or Residential, Full street address, Title (inspiration for your light creation is encouraged), Email and Phone number
Lights need to be on from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. December 7– January 1. (or longer!)
That’s all it will take to be a part of Albany’s “Magic” this year!
Winners will be announced by December 22nd.
People wishing to drive the route to look at the participating locations can pick up a list of participants at AlbanyVisitors.com beginning December 10 or download the Albany Explorer App.
Thank you to all the homeowners who participate in this program. Without your efforts this wonderful community tradition would not be possible
Christmas In Albany by Dina Ratzlaff
Entry forms can be downloaded here or you can email or call us and we will email you a form. The deadline for the 2020 submissions is 5 p.m. Monday, December 7th*The contest is open to Albany city-limits residents only. Telephone us if you have any questions: 541-928-0911.
3rd Christine Withers – “Garden Sun” – Downtown Albany
2nd James Williams – “Gateway to Albany” – Ellsworth Bridge, Albany
1st Barry Hoffman – “Light Up Train” – Albany Amtrak and Transportation Station
Life in the Community
3rd Melinda Martin – “September 11th” – Albany Courthouse
2nd Camron Settlemier – “July 4th Fireworks” – Downtown Albany
1st Dan Bateman – “Square-dance Shoes” – Heritage Mall, Albany
3rd Pavla Zakova-Laney – “Sunset at Scott Lake” – Three Sisters Wilderness, OR
2nd James Williams – “Autumn Splendor” – McDowell Creek Park, Lebanon, OR
1st Camron Settlemier – Switchback, Hood River, OR
3rd Melinda Martin – “Sheep” – Linn County, OR
2nd Dave Maestas – “Winter Sunset” – Waverly Lake, Albany
1st Stephanie Low – “Japanese Garden” – Lebanon, OR
Dan Bateman – “The Pizza’s THAT Good” – Albany Farmers’ Market
Here’s a great fun activity for your stay-home-stay-safe day: Help us select the winner of the People’s Choice Award in the 2020 Albany Visitors Association Photo Contest.
It’s easy: Just go to our Flickr accountand connect to our 2020 contest albums. You’ll find several categories to look through. As you make your way through, select your favorites by clicking on the “star” icon. (You can only vote once on any of the images.)
We will leave voting up for the entire month of April,so help share the news.
And why not make it a family activity that you can involve the kids in? Try and see if you can count the number of different animals in the photos or try and name the various sites you see. Feel free to post your totals here in the comments. And keep tuned to Facebook for more family online fun.
Do you pride yourself on being a trivia expert? Want to take an overnight road trip from Portland or Eugene and see the Willamette Valley from the air? Do you like wine tasting and good food? If you answered “yes,” there’s a good chance you’ll enjoy participating in our “Spring Giveaway Contest.”
Albany Visitors Association along with our partners at KEZI have launched another fab giveaway package and you have until March 5th to enter. Prizes include a demo flight at the Infinite Air Center, wine tasting for two at Springhill Cellars Winery, a gift certificate to the House of Noodle (can you say ramen?), rides on the Albany Historic Carousel, and an overnight stay at the Albany Phoenix Inn.
It’s free to enter, just make sure to beat the deadline (March 5th) and good luck!
It’s not too early to plan ahead for the most popular winter quilt show in Oregon, as the Willamette Valley Quilt Festival arrives on January 31 and February 1, 2020, at the Linn County Expo Center.
A show patterned from innovation
As Americans, we possess a rich legacy of quilt-making and design, so it’s not surprising quilt festivals have become increasingly popular over the last decade. Quilts are complex works of colorful folk art, as mysterious as a corn-maze — and festivals are the perfect place to showcase local talent.
Several years ago, two Albany business owners teamed up to plan a winter quilt show. The Rich family (of Rich’s Sewing & Vacuum) and their staff, and the owners of Albany’s Bolts to Blocks (Barb and Pete Schoonover), launched the first Willamette Valley Quilt Festival in 2018. Their idea was to hold the event during the rainy season and provide quilt designers a creative outlet to counteract the mid-winter blues.
Last year’s quilt festival was a rousing success and attracted thousands of visitors to the Linn County Expo Center. There were over 300 quilts on display and a wide assortment of vendors, classes and demonstrations.
At the 2020 show (January 31st through February 1st) the number of vendors has once again increased and will include booths filled with tools, machines, handcrafted items such as handbags and scarves, quilting kits and templates, fabric, clothing, home decor and, of course, an amazing gallery of quilts.
The quilt contest portion of the show will interest art and craft lovers, whether they sew or not. Wide aisles beckon with a cornucopia of pattern. Quilts of all sizes reflect the imagination of their creators. You’lleven be able to vote for your favorite, if you can decide which you like best.
A $3,000 Babylock Soprano sewing machine will be awarded as the contest’s grand prize. The “Mayor’s Choice Award” from Albany Mayor Sharon Konopa and the Albany Visitors Association will be filled with goodies like wine from Springhill Cellars Winery and gift certificates to local restaurants and businesses.
Classes and demonstrations
Whether you are an experienced quilter or just starting out, workshops will be offered throughout Friday and Saturday at the main festival location (Linn County Expo Center). Instruction topics include using Oregon-made templates by Westalee, ruler work, embroidery, quilt design and laser-cut appliqué.
On Thursday, January 30, a special pre-show workshop will be taught by the festival’s 2020 Featured Quilter, Sheila Sinclair Snyder, owner of Licensed to Quilt in Junction City, Oregon. Snyder will guide participants in creating quilt paintings on rustic barn wood. The workshop will be held at Bolts to Blocks new location, 950 SE Geary, Suite C, in Albany.
All classes require pre-registration; contact Rich’s Sewing & Vacuum of Albany to reserve your space. (See contact information in the “What to know if you go” section.)
Demonstrations and presentations conducted throughout the main expo hall are free with paid admission.
What to know if you go
The 2020 Willamette Valley Quilt Festival will be held 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on both Friday and Saturday, January 31 and February 1. The event is inside the main exhibit hall at the Linn County Expo Center, 3700 Knox Butte Rd. in Albany, Oregon. Admission is $7, parking is free. Tickets may be purchased at the show or pre-paid online.
Pre-show activities on Thursday, January 30th and workshops on Friday and Saturday require registration. Contact Rich’s Sewing & Vacuum in Albany for workshop pricing and times. For more information telephone 541-926-4842.
If you are traveling to the show and plan to spend the night, get a special Albany Visitors Association rate with our featured hotels, the Best Western Plus Prairie Inn or Quality Inn & Suites by asking for the “AVA Rate” when reserving your room.
While at the show, enjoy delicious food truck selections from Grindz Hawaiian, Natalie’s Mexi-Kart, Dajoy’s Kettle Korn and Double J BBQ. An onsite espresso bar and catered kitchen selections will be operating within the main exhibit hall.
For ideas about where to meet friends for dinner after the show, make sure to visit the Albany Visitors Association booth in the main exhibit hall. We’ll have restaurant guides, city maps and everything you need for a great night or two on the town. We can also help you find places for breakfast and brunch, desserts and more. Check our “Spirited Cuisine” page for a full list.
AVA is pleased to announce the winners of the 2019 AVA Photo Contest. We received over 250 stunning images, and although our judges struggled mightily to hone the honors down to just a few in each category, the end results are beautiful.
View the winners video
The Albany Visitors Association (AVA) is excited to announce the winners of our 12th Annual Photography Contest. The purpose of this contest is to find images suitable for use in marketing materials for Albany and the surrounding area. The contest is open to photographers of all skill levels, and this year 15 talented photographers entered 251 beautiful and creative photos.
Prizes this year included ribbons and gift cards for the winners of Champion, Reserve Champion, Staff Choice, and People’s Choice. All Photographers who earned a ribbon were entered into a drawing for $200, and Camron Settlemier was the talented and lucky winner this year.
The public is invited to a big party, Saturday, April 20, 2019, for the free AVA Photo Contest Awards at The Albany Pix Theatre, 321 SW 2nd Ave in Downtown Albany.
We can say that quite possibly, “You get a prize, she gets a prize, they get a prize – but not without showing up!” Door prize drawings will be awarded to several lucky attendees. We also hear that snacks will be served – – yum.
AVA received over 200 photos that our esteemed judges selected this year’s winners from. While we can’t reveal who won just yet, come and join us for the party and see all of the entries on the big screen.
“Holiday Greetings in Historic Albany,” 401 Main St SE, Albany, OR 97321
“Sharing Holiday Cheer Inside and Out,” 503 West First Ave, Albany OR 97321
“Traditional Christmas,” 222 4th Ave SE
Winners receive an awards certificate and a $50 gift card to Albany’s first-run movie house, The Pix Theatre. Photos of the winning homes will also be on display at the Pix. Download a PDF of the locations map or stop by AVA at 110 3rd SE (on the corner of 3rd and Lyon) and ask for a printed copy.
Selected winning entries to the Night Time Magic Program are determined by a panel of judges who conduct drive-by sightings between December 10th and 15th. Homes must have been formally entered into the contest.
This is the 31st year that Albany Visitors Association has helped to make the holidays bright with this community-wide contest. If you are interested in being a part of the 2019 contest next December, contact the Albany Visitors Association, 110 3rd Ave SE, 541-928-0911 or sign up for our e-newsletter to receive future announcements.
Thank you to all the homeowners who participate in this program, without your efforts, this wonderful community tradition would not be possible.
Don’t forget to visit some of the winners from last year (list below) to see what they might be up to this year. We heard that the Piedmont Avenue cul-de-sac isa study in motion and color!
Holiday Light Award winners 2017
Piedmont Christmas Cul-de-sac, 6127 Piedmont Pl SW, Albany, OR 97321
It’s the Most Magical Time of the Year, 3849 Oakmont Loop NE, Albany, OR 97322
Let There be Light, 797 Fairmont Drive NE, Albany, OR 97322
Once again, the Albany Visitors Association is helping to make the holiday season bright by sponsoring the 31st Annual Night Time Magic Holiday Light Program. Residents are encouraged to enter this contest for the best home/business light displays.
Three winners will be selected and one group entry will be awarded the “Best Neighborly Effort.”Winners will be entitled to bragging rights for the entire year, and one of three fabulous prizes as determined by the prize committee. Be a part of Historic Albany’s “Magic!”
The contest is an annual tradition to help the city celebrate the season and create holiday lights for residents and visitors to enjoy. Participants are encouraged to share the source for their inspiration such as: family tradition; favorite holiday book, movie or special; music, dance or art; special collection; just lights, lights and more lights—the more the merrier!; or your own idea or inspiration for creating the display.
Entries must be within the city limits of Albany.
Homeowners are encouraged to use lights to illuminate their yard decorations.
Lights need to be on from 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. December 1, 2018 – January 1, 2019. (If entry form submitted after Dec 1st, you have until December 9th to display lights.)
Entries for “Best Neighborly Effort” must have three or more partners in a concentrated area.
Entry/Nomination Deadline: 5:00 p.m. on December 9, 2018.
Entry forms can be picked up(or requested via e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org) and returned to Albany Visitors Association at 110 3rd Ave SE, Albany, OR 9732.
Winners will be announced by December 15, 2018 and prize distribution made soon after.
People wishing to drive the route to look at the entries can pick up a list of participants and a map at the Albany Visitors Association beginning December 15, 2018. Lights will be up through January 1, 2019.
Thank you to all the homeowners who participate in this program, without your efforts this wonderful community tradition would not be possible.
Previous Holiday Light Award Winners
Piedmont Christmas Cul-de-sac, 6127 Piedmont Pl SW, Albany, OR 97321
It’s the Most Magical Time of the Year, 3849 Oakmont Loop NE, Albany, OR 97322
Let There be Light, 797 Fairmont Drive NE, Albany, OR 97322