The theme for this year’s contest was the county’s greatest asset – its people.
Three adults and three youth from Chester County won awards for their entries in the Chester County Planning Commission’s Landscapes3 photo contest, which focused on the county’s greatest asset: people.The photo contest, “Putting a Face on Chester County,” was a great way for the public to share how they spend their time in the county. The entries will help the Planning Commission better understand what is important in the daily lives of residents as the development of Landscapes3, the county’s next long-range comprehensive plan, continues.The Planning Commission received 249 entries through the contest, which was open from the end of August through mid-October this year. The Landscapes3 Steering Committee selected the winners in the adult and youth photographer categories.The winners in the youth photographer category include first place, “Sunset,” by Andy Zhang; second place, “Sunset Fishin,’” by Michael McBride; and third place, “Lost in the Sunshine and the Flowers,” by Abigail Williams.“After I heard I won the first place and read the message with the prizes on it, I was very excited and could not wait to get them,” said Zhang, who earned the top prize in the youth category.The winners in the adult photographer category include first place, “Running on Hay Bales,” by Beth Uhler; second place, “Doesn’t Get Any Better…” by Miranda Wade; and third place, “Sunrise,” by Heidi Whitmore.“I’m surprised and humbled to win the photo contest,” said Uhler, who won the first place prize in the adult category. “I love taking photographs, but don’t consider myself a ‘photographer’ by any means. Chester County provides such a great setting— it’s hard to take a bad photo in a place like Stroud Preserve. I have lived here all my life and appreciate it more as time goes by.”All six winners receive a selection of prizes donated by Longwood Gardens, Brandywine River Museum and Millstone Café, Dansko, Trek Bicycle (Exton), The American Helicopter Museum and Education Center, and the Palace Bowling and Entertainment Center.“We appreciate everyone who took the time to participate in this photo contest and show us what matters to them in Chester County,” said Planning Commission Executive Director Brian O’Leary. “We also would like to thank all our sponsors who were generous with their donations for prizes. It was a great success all-around.”In addition to the winning photos, many of the images submitted will be used on the Landscapes3 website and within the Landscapes3 printed comprehensive plan. The Chester County Commissioners will recognize the winners at a meeting later this month.This was the second photo contest that the Planning Commission has conducted during the Landscapes3 update process. Last year, the agency asked residents for photos of their favorite place in Chester County.The photo contests are just one of the ways the Planning Commission has sought input from the public during the continued development of Landscapes3. Other outreach efforts include community events, stakeholder and steering committee meetings, a public input meeting, and a video series. The public can provide further input at a series of regional public meetings, which will begin in March 2018. To check out the videos and other updates about Landscapes3, visit chescoplanning.org.Photo Caption: Beth Uhler won first place in the adult category of the Landscapes3 photo contest for her photo, “Running on Hay Bales”