Generation Z’s photo skills are certainly not limited to selfies! For the first time, the Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas Youth Tour held a photo contest. During the all-expenses-paid educational trip to Washington, D.C., from June 16th to 22nd, delegates were encouraged to take photos of the people and places they encountered and enter their best work. The winner would have their photo published in Arkansas Living and receive an Amazon gift card. Chaperones selected 4 finalists from 34 entries.
These 4 photos were posted on the Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas Youth Tour Facebook page, and the photo with the most likes during a 3-day period was declared the winner.
The winner was Mollie Thompson of Corning (Clay County Electric Cooperative). Her stirring photo of a guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery earned more than 700 Facebook likes by press time.
Said Mollie, “Visiting Arlington was one of the most eye-opening experiences; it truly shows the sacrifices that people make for our country. When taking my photo, all I could think about was my papa. He served in the Air Force and wanted to be buried in Arlington. Right after this picture was taken, the changing of the guard took place, and I could not help but feel the patriotism and power in the ritual. I started to cry. Cry for my papa, who loved our country and would’ve loved to be there to witness that; cry for the families and friends; and cry for joy that we live in a protected country where we are safe.
“When I learned I won the contest, it gave me so much joy that so many people felt the deep power. … Arlington is such a special place, and I am so grateful to have captured the essence and true meaning of America.”
Other photo contest finalists were: Haley Carter from Rich Mountain Electric Cooperative Lily Davis from Ozarks Electric Cooperative Briley Hickman from North Arkansas Electric Cooperative.
Not only did our talented Youth Tour delegates share their photos, but they also shared their stories. Read about their experiences in their own words, Gen Z to DC Cover Story.
Here’s to all of us enjoying a few more share-worthy adventures before summer ends.
Have an awesome August!
Jennifer Christman Cia