Tips for Kids Entering the Nature Photo Contest

SUMMER 2013 Photo Contest Nature Photography Tips for Kids

What’s more fun than being outside, playing in nature?  For many kids, it’s being outside, taking photos of nature! Kids love gadgets so help them enter the Valley Land Fund youth photo contest with age brackets from 6 to 9, 10 to 13 and 14 to 18 years of age.  Kids are encouraged to submit their six (6) best images by July 31st for the Valley Land Fund Photo Contest with over $5,000 in cash and prizes!

Five quick photo tips from professional outdoor photographer Ruth Hoyt:

  1.  Stand or sit squarely behind your camera—so horizon is straight
  2. Be very selective as to what is included and what you leave out.  Move to the left or right a little to adjust your image.
  3. Check the 4 corners of your camera viewfinder and watch out for distracting elements—again work to create a good composition.
  4. Focus—most cameras have a short shutter delay, so make sure your child knows to keep her/his finger on the shutter button until the photo is taken.
  5. Take more than one photograph of your subject—take 10 shots and just delete the ones you don’t want.

Children will have a chance to explore the outdoors in June and July and attend the free Awards Ceremony on August 15th, 7:00 pm at Quinta Mazatlan.  Every child will be recognized with a winning image in the multi-media show and receive a free SOUTHERN EXPOSURES t-shirt.

All children in the Rio Grande Valley counties of Texas are invited to take nature photographs, and enter the contest!  Take a picture any time this summer from June to July, but make sure it is submitted on a disc with an Entry Form by July 31st to Quinta Mazatlan and other participating sites.  For more information and to download contest rules and entry forms, visit Our Website or call us at (956) 681-3370.


Vida Verde is TOMORROW!

TOMORROW is Vida Verde 2013!

Kids at Vida Verde 2012 (4)

Vida Verde offers something for people of ALL ages, from kids to adults, but kids especially will have a few thing just for them!

Kids at Vida Verde 2012 (1)

Outside the gates, along with the McAllen Recycling Challenge, we will have a 3-sided Rock Wall!  Climbing the rock wall is free (included in your admission)!

Kids at Vida Verde 2012 (2)

When you enter the festival, be sure to pick up an Eco-Passport for your kids!  Kids will get their Eco-Passport stamped at different festival spots and at the end they will show their Passport to staff to receive a special prize!

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There will be different Eco-Crafts to make with re-used and recycled materials…  Here is a sneak peak at one of them that even the adults will enjoy…

Vida Verde Eco Craft Preview

And of course there will be free Face Painting!  A favorite for all festival-goers!

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All of our shows are family-friendly, but this year we have  a stage especially for the littlest ones.  Storytime will feature nature stories and crafts at the Discovery Center!

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And of course, kids and families are welcome to explore the trails and the park all day!

Kids at Vida Verde 2012 (3)

We hope to see you there!

Click here to download the festival program!

Vida Verde Earth Day Festival: The Biggest Green Festival in South Texas!
Saturday, April 20th, 2013 from 9am-4pm
At Quinta Mazatlan, 600 Sunset Dr, McAllen, TX 78503

3 Days until Vida Verde!

3 days until Vida Verde 2013!

A very special part of Vida Verde will be devoted to the little ones!  Join us for Storytime- all day!

Storytime 2013 Flyer

Download the Flyer HERE

Storytime Schedule
10:00am Where the Wild Things Are with storyteller Rick Guerra
10:45am Be a Green Hero with UTPA
11:30am Ladybug Girl with storyteller Jennifer Owen-White
12:15pm Be a Green Hero with UTPA
1:00pm A Frog Thing with storyteller Brent Crandall
2:30pm StellaLuna with storyteller Virginia Mann

And check out the rest of our incredible shows!

Vida Verde Earth Day Festival: The Biggest Green Festival in South Texas!
Saturday, April 20th, 2013 from 9am-4pm
At Quinta Mazatlan, 600 Sunset Dr, McAllen, TX 78503