LINCOLN, Neb. — In some photos, a single person fills the hand-built blue photo frame, the backdrop a memorable location within one of Nebraska’s state park treasures.
In others, extended families spill over, 20 or 30 of them gathered behind the selfie station frame, nearly blocking the entire view of the park, but capturing a treasured moment to share in the future.
Each is participating in Your Parks Adventure, a Nebraska Game and Parks Commission challenge to outdoor enthusiasts to explore the diverse state park system in honor of the parks’ centennial.
Anyone who visits one of the 100 selfie stations placed at Nebraska state parks or recreation areas, snaps a photo, and submits it and their story online are eligible to win prizes, including camping gear, backpacking gear and the grand prize Forest River RV Patriot Edition 14cc camper from AC Nelsen RV World.
So far, 208 people have entered a photo and 66 of Nebraska’s state parks have had a Your Parks Adventure guest. One couple has submitted a photo from 50 of the 100 selfie stations and visited 36 of the park areas.
Each participant has a story to tell.
“My dad brought the family to Fort Robinson for the first time in 1987, and we've never stopped!” wrote Kelly Novotny, of Omaha. “Now my older sister and myself love bringing our husbands and children as well. Everyone loves Fort Robinson as much as the original four of us do.”
Stories such as these show the program, like others Game and Parks has hosted to encourage people to enjoy the outdoors, works.
“Kelly’s comments capture the spirit of this challenge and show the importance of state parks as places for memorable outdoor experiences,” said Jim Swenson, Parks Division Administrator. “Participants stories also increase awareness for the value of our public park system, which belongs to each and every Nebraskan and to visitors to our great state.”
The contest continues through Nov. 30, 2021, and submissions should be made at YourNebraskaParks100.org/YourParksAdventure.
To be eligible to win the camper, participants must visit Chadron State Park, Victoria Springs State Recreation Area, Arbor Lodge State Historical Park and Danish Alps State Recreation Area. All other photo entries from one of the 100 unique selfie stations qualifies for a monthly prize drawing.
Every participant who submits a photo and story will receive a commemorative parks centennial sticker, and those participants who complete the grand prize challenge also will receive a limited-edition commemorative challenge coin.
Event sponsors include AC Nelsen RV World, SCHEELS, Hiland Dairy, JEO Consulting, and Crouch Recreation.
A Nebraska State Park Entry permit is required to visit the parks; buy one or learn more about the challenge at YourNebraskaParks100.org.