Florence Chamber Names Photo Contest Winner

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Action shot of a kiteboarder at the south jetty by Dana Vion

The Florence Area Chamber of Commerce announced that Dana Vion from Springfield is the winner of its recent photo contest.

“Dana’s action shot of a kiteboarder at the south jetty reflects the true spirit and beautiful scenery of Florence as Oregon’s Coastal Playground,” says Bettina Hannigan, the Chamber’s executive director.

“Dana’s photo really captured a fun ‘playground’ moment and expresses how great Florence is for outdoor fun,” says Hannigan. “It was a very close decision, made all the more difficult by the fact that we received scores of outstanding amateur and professional photos. Each shows different aspects of the best of our area’s scenery, iconic buildings, natural wonders, and with families having fun in and around Florence. You can really see why we call this place Oregon’s Coastal Playground.”

Vion works as a professional photographer, freelances for area publications such as Eugene Magazine, and does photographic and video work for a Eugene-area advertising and public relations agencies and non-profits. She entered the Chamber’s contest so that she could get more of her work known locally.

“We were with our dog out on the south jetty on a windy day. I had my camera and tripod with me and I was exploring how to frame humans in the vastness of landscape photography,” says Vion. She had the unusual perspective of being beyond the breakers and looking back toward the beach when she snapped the winning photo.

Vion says she loves telling stories through the lens of a camera…stories of the natural world, conservation issues, and human and animal welfare. 

Vion has been to Africa seven times doing photography and video and as a zoology graduate student, documenting human and animal struggles as well as working at a chimpanzee rescue center. She has also traveled to Borneo to study and photograph wildlife there, including endangered orangutans.

“I am at home where the forest meets the ocean, that is my natural habitat and the Florence area is one of my favorite places. I always try to have my camera and am chasing beauty wherever I go,” she adds.

Vion was awarded a $250 cash prize and her photo will be featured in the Chamber’s resource guide and other printed marketing pieces, on the Chamber’s website, and in social media. A panel of Chamber members selected hers from nearly 150 entries.

Each year for the last three years the Florence Area Chamber of Commerce has held a contest looking for the best amateur or professional photos to represent its slogan as Oregon’s Coastal Playground.

“Dana’s, and dozens of other excellent scenic photos, are also available to Chamber members to use in their marketing. They’ve been watermarked with the Chamber’s ‘Oregon’s Coastal Playground’ slogan to help protect copyright infringement,” added Hannigan. Entrants granted the Chamber and its members exclusive rights to use their photos for all manner of marketing the area for its rich recreational resources.

“The Chamber works hard for its members and the City of Florence to boost our economy by inviting visitors to vacation here, and, if they like it, to move their businesses and families here too,” says Hannigan. “Florence is such a fun destination.”

For more information about vacationing in, moving to, or establishing a business in Florence—or volunteering at the Chamber’s visitors center—visit FlorenceChamber.com, call 541-997-3128, or e-mail info@FlorenceChamber.com.

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