The Sanibel Middle School’s nature photography contest concluded with an awards ceremony and reception on Friday, December 7. This annual school event is a partnership program of the J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge and Bank of the Islands, which provides medals, cash prizes and exhibition space for the contest. The partnership also extends to the Cypress Lake Middle School and Edison National Bank in Fort Myers.
Prior to the awards ceremony, the students visited the Refuge with their photography instructor at the Sanibel Middle School, Dr. Terrie Kielborn. The lessons continued back in the classroom where Dr. Kielborn then taught the students how to enhance their photography using computer software, and to name their finished pieces creatively.
Ranger Monica Scroggin emceed the event to showcase all the students’ artwork at the J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge Education Center.
Bank of the Islands’ Vice Presidents Willy Ocasio and Rob Lisenbee presented award medals and $100, $75, and $50 cashier’s checks to the top three student photographers. The honors went to:
1st Place: 8th grader Amanda Cohen for “Sunny Side Up”
2nd Place: 7th grader Jessika Laborde for “Catching a Morning Snack”
3rd Place: 7th grader Lydia Whalen for “Wasps of the Death Star”
“We love sponsoring this contest and are always amazed at the quality of the photos,” said Bank of the Islands Vice President and Sanibel-Captiva Office Manager Willy Ocasio. “We invite all islanders to see them displayed in our Sanibel bank lobby in the New Year.”
Beginning January 2, Bank of the Islands will host the exhibit of all the student photography in its Sanibel office lobby at 1699 Periwinkle Way. Every student participating in the contest will receive a $1 U.S. Mint gold coin from Bank of the Islands Bank when they visit the photo display. Student photographers and other visitors are invited to enjoy freshly baked cookies while viewing the exhibit.
Bank of the Islands, a name synonymous with island community banking since 1974, is located at the corner of Periwinkle Way and Casa Ybel Road on Sanibel. Its Captiva office is located at 14812 Captiva Drive next to the US Post Office. As the oldest locally owned and managed community bank on the islands, Bank of the Islands is proud to be the winner of 41 “Best of the Islands” awards since 1999, including being chosen the Best Island Bank for 20 years straight.