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    Vote for the Heritage Area’s “Best of Show”

    Northeast Iowa – Silos & Smokestacks National Heritage Area’s (SSNHA) 2011 Capture the Heart of America Photo Contest needs you! Log on to between October 31 and November 6, to help us choose this year’s winner for “Best of Show.”  Your vote could determine the winner of a brand new Tamron, 70-300mm Image Stabilizing Lens donated by Porter’s Digital Cameras and Imaging in Cedar Rapids.

    Finalists for “Best of Show” are comprised of the first place photos in each of five categories, chosen by a panel of judges, and include:  

        Jason Arends, Lake Mills, WI – Tractor Sled Ride (Farm Life)
        Josh Goodell, Waterloo, IA – Fall Fields (Farmscapes)
        Marty Jacobs, Slater, IA – Working Tools (Heritage Area Sites)
        Jerry Ranch, West Des Moines, IA – Roll Out the Barrel (Festivals & Fairs)
        Ed Siems, Marshalltown, IA – Diver Going to Work (Images of the Past)

    The contest, which seeks to capture the unique agricultural heritage and culture of the 37-county Heritage Area, is in its fifth year and continues to grow. For 2011, the contest brought in 540 photos from over 150 participants. Photos were submitted by Heritage Area visitors from seven different states including Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Missouri, Georgia and Texas. All of the photos submitted to this year’s contest can be viewed at

    “We love having the residents and visitors to the Heritage Area involved in determining the Best of Show,” commented Don Short, SSNHA President. “The story of American agriculture is truly their story and voting gives them the opportunity to be engaged with its preservation.”

    SSNHA is one of 49 federally designated heritage areas in the nation and is an Affiliated Area of the National Park Service. The Heritage Area covers 37 counties in the northeast quadrant of Iowa. Interstate 80 borders it on the south and Interstate 35 borders it on the west. Through a network of sites, programs and events, SSNHA interprets farm life, agribusiness, and rural communities—past and present.

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