Help us explore Michiana from behind the lens

Published 9:43 am Thursday, April 21, 2016

I’ve been doing a lot of traveling the last several weeks.

It has been so refreshing to satisfy my wanderlust after several long months of winter, and much like many others in Michiana, I’ve milked every second of sunshine possible since the weather broke.

If you look in my phone, you’ll find dozens of pictures from my excursions — sky view photos from plane rides, random photos of strangers, selfies in bookstores (my favorite destination in any city) and landscape images of views I wanted to hold on to.

This is probably my favorite part of traveling: gathering memories to revisit and remember. Maybe it’s the journalist in me keeping records of my travels, visual proof that I have seen what I have seen.

I know I’m not the only one with this addiction. Social media sites like Facebook and Instagram showcase anyone with a smartphone or camera’s love for capturing the beauty around them.

Shutterbugs like myself will have an opportunity to win money for those images and have them showcased in our upcoming travel and summer fun guide, Explore Michiana.

Returning for the third year, Explore Michiana does just as the title says: It showcases all the fun opportunities our region has to offer, from beaches to breweries, ballparks, golf courses countless other amenities.

The contest allows us to help showcase Michiana through the perspective of those who Explore Michiana every day.

And did I mention you can win money for it?

Again this year, we’re offering up two $250 Visa gift cards, as well as some Pizza Transit gift certificates.

The Visa gift cards will be awarded to the first prize winner in two categories: Readers’ Choice and Staff Choice.

Different from previous years, we’ll handle all Readers’ Choice voting on our Leader Publications Facebook page ( Voters will have a chance to cast their ballots for their favorite pictures simply by clicking “like” from April 27 through May 10.

Additionally, staff here at Leader Publications will cast their votes for their favorite picture.

Second- and third-place winners in each category will win free pizza at one of Niles’ favorite restaurants.

You can participate in the Explore Michiana photo contest by sending your photos, along with a brief description explaining where the photos were taken, to Photos must be submitted by April 26, and will be uploaded to the Facebook page April 27. As soon as you see photos, you can start voting!

Winners will be announced inside Explore Michiana, as well as via email once the publication has distributed.

There’s still time to get out and explore Michiana. While you’re out and about enjoying this beautiful weather this weekend, grab your camera, capture some memories and send them our way. We’re excited to see Michiana from your point of view.


Ambrosia Neldon is the managing editor at Leader Publications. She can be reached by phone at (269) 687-7713, or by email at