Recreation.gov launched its second annual “Share Your Story” adventure writing contest, inviting visitors of America’s federal public lands to submit stories detailing their experiences (that occurred between January 1, 2020 – April 30, 2022) exploring and spending time in the great outdoors.
“When Recreation.gov first launched the ‘Share Your Story’ contest in 2021, we set out to discover stories from people across the nation who got outside to experience nature in a new way, and particularly how those experiences helped them find peace, tranquility, or adventure during the first year of the pandemic,” said Rick DeLappe, Program Manager at Recreation.gov.
“We were blown away by the entries, many of which covered memorable moments with loved ones and a newfound sense of gratitude and appreciation for public lands and waters. We look forward to receiving more stories in 2022 of how the great outdoors has brought people peace, enjoyment, and a sense of togetherness, with nature, family, or new friends you meet along the trail.”
Participants can submit stories that fall within up to two of four categories:
- Traditions (Old and New)
- Family Trips
- Activities and Adventure.
As we reflect on the benefits that nature provides during challenging times, we can rely on storytelling to keep us connected and to provide comfort. In celebrating stories of outdoor adventures or peace-seeking in nature, we can see ourselves in each other and in the places that tie us together.
Participants can enter up to two stories during the contest period for a chance to be one of the total 29 winners of various prizes, including:
- Three Grand Prize Winners: The first Grand Prize Winner will receive $1,500 from an outdoor retailer, the Second Grand Prize Winner will receive a $1,000 from an outdoor retailer, and the third Grand Prize Winner will receive $500 from an outdoor retailer. Additionally, each winner will receive an America the Beautiful – The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands (ATB) Pass, providing access to more than 2,000 federal recreation sites across the country.
- Four Overall Category First Place Winners: Each winner will receive $300 from an outdoor retailer and an ATB pass.
- Four Overall Category Runner Up Winners: Each winner will receive $150 from an outdoor retailer and an ATB pass.
- Four Monthly First Place Winners: Each winner will receive $150 from an outdoor retailer and an ATB pass.
- Four Monthly Runner Up Winners: Each winner will receive $100 from an outdoor retailer and an ATB pass.
- Ten Honorable Mention Winners: Each winner will receive branded gear from Recreation.gov.
You must submit stories (900-3,500 words plus photo) by April 30, 2022 HERE. Winners will be announced on or around May 15, 2022.
Contest entries will be reviewed by a panel of judges. Stories will be judged based on the following criteria:
- originality and creativity of the story
- clarity and organization of the story composition
- content of the story and its appropriateness for the designated category
- whether the story showcases the best of America’s federal lands and waters recreational opportunities.
Each of the criteria will be given equal consideration. Complete contest rules can be found HERE.
This website is a tool to plan your next trip, figure out details, and reserve experiences at over 3,600 facilities and 103,000 individual sites across the country. The Recreation.gov mobile app puts adventure at your fingertips. From booking a weekend getaway to planning a cross-country road trip, the Recreation.gov app helps you find and reserve campsites, review location details, and quickly access information on past and upcoming reservations.