ROSELAND, NJ — West Orange residents Leonardo and Massimo McCormick were recently named two of the four winners in the youth category of the 2019 Essex County Parks Photography Contest, an annual competition sponsored by the Essex County Environmental Center that encourages anyone with a camera to submit photos taken within the boundaries of the Essex County Parks System to be judged by members of the Essex County Photo Club.

Leonardo received second place for his photo entitled “Bee in the 4-H Garden at the Essex County Environmental Center,” and Massimo received an honorable mention for “Monarch Butterfly at the Essex County Environmental Center.”

All photographs have been taken over the past year and were judged on creativity, technical superiority, composition and the photograph’s depiction of the uniqueness of the Essex County Parks System. They are currently on display at the Essex County Environmental Center through the end of October.

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“What I enjoy most about taking photos in our local parks is being able to capture and preserve not only the images, but the emotions and actions of the variety of wildlife that inhabit these parks,” said Janet Markman of West Caldwell, who received first place in the Adult Category for her photo entitled “Hilltop Reservation – Ruby Throated Hummingbird.”

“This allows others to share in and experience what I see," she said. "People don’t realize they have a virtual Garden of Eden in their own backyards, and it is my passion to share this beauty with others. What’s special about the annual Essex photography contest is that it challenges me to raise the artistic bar even higher and bring it to a wider audience.”

Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr. presented awards to the eight youth and adult winners during the Fall Family Festival at the Essex County Environmental Center in Roseland. Leonardo and Massimo are pictured above with the county executive, Environmental Center Director Tara Casella, Essex County Parks Director Dan Salvante and Staff Naturalist David Alexander.

“We congratulate the winners of the Essex County Parks Photography Contest and thank all the contestants for sharing what they experienced in our historic Parks System,” said DiVincenzo. “Events like these encourage our residents to visit our open spaces and share their artistic talents. All these photographs capture the beauty, highlight the diversity and natural splendor of our parks, reservations and recreation facilities."

The artists, and the awards they received, are as follows:

Adult Category (18 and older):

  • Janet Markman from West Caldwell received first place in the Adult Category for “Hilltop Reservation – Ruby Throated Hummingbird.”
     
  • Olivia Sharp from Passaic received second place in the Adult Category for “Cherry Blossoms at Branch Brook Park.”
     
  • Daniel Seugling from Caldwell received third place in the Adult Category for “Mountain Lion at Turtle Back Zoo.”
     
  • John Shiever from Cedar Grove received an honorable mention in the Adult Category for “Verona Park Lake.”

Youth Category (17 years and younger):

  •  Emma Hogan from Verona received first place in the Youth Category for “Verona Park Lake.”
     
  • Leonardo McCormick from West Orange received second place in the Youth Category for “Bee in the 4-H Garden at the Essex County Environmental Center.”
     
  • George Janulis from West Caldwell received third place in the Youth Category for “Oak Tree in South Mountain Reservation.”
     
  • Massimo McCormick from West Orange received an honorable mention in the Youth Category for “Monarch Butterfly at the Essex County Environmental Center.”

Contest sponsors included:

  • The Towne Scoop
  • The Learning Express
  • Eight Hills Caterers
  • Green Point Organic Juicery
  • Madison Photo Plus
  • Earth Wind & Flowers
  • Starbucks
  • Jersey Mike’s Subs
  • Livingston Camera
  • Livingston Car Wash