Library system’s photo contest seeks to highlight the beauty of the Blue Ridge foothills

By Brandon Martin

Landscape lovers are called to “Wander into the Wonder of Martinsville, Henry County, & Patrick County” by entering the Blue Ridge Regional Library (BRRL) photo contest, scheduled to run until Oct. 28 at 6 p.m.

Leandio Gravely, program coordinator at BRRL, said the idea for a photo contest came after many had been cooped up due to the pandemic.

“We always try to find ways to keep the community entertained,” Gravely said. “Since we are still closed to the public, we needed to find new ways to engage the public.”

With safety still a priority, Gravely said he thought it was best to organize an event that was friendly to social distancing.

Additionally, people “often underestimate the beauty in our area” and the contest will “serve as a reminder of what our community has to offer, he said.

Participants must submit their photos, name and phone number via email at events@brrl.lib.va.us or through Facebook messenger by the Oct. 28 deadline to be eligible to win a prize. One prize will be given to an individual in each locality (the City of Martinsville, Henry and Patrick counties). Only one entry can be submitted per person.

Gravely prizes will be donated by local tourism partners. “It’s all really a community-driven effort,” he added.

Submissions will be featured for a week on the library’s Facebook page. Visitors can cast votes on the snapshots they believe deserve top honors.

Gravely said winners can pick-up their prizes at the closest library branch.

He said he is hoping for a lot of submissions, and added that some early submissions will be tough competition.

“Someone sent us this beautiful shot over at Lake Lanier. It was like a postcard,” Gravely said. Sometimes you really do forget some of the sights we take for granted around here.”

Residents of the King’s Grant Retirement community also plan to get in on the action with scenic views of their neighborhood, he added.

To find out more about BRRL events, visit www.brrl.lib.va.us/, visit the library branch’s social media page, or call your local branch. The main branch in Martinsville can be reached at (276) 403-5430.

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