Dale-1-Jessica-Westmark-GatorThe 8th annual Dale Westcott Memorial Nature Awards were presented on Monday evening at the photography Club of Beaufort. Each year the club sponsors a nature photography contest for local high school students in memory of Dale Westcott, one of the club’s early members.

Mr. Westcott was both an educator and a nature photographer and the award encourages students to creatively photograph the beauty of our natural surroundings. Mrs. Barbara Westcott, his widow, and Mr. Donald Westcott, his son, are benefactors of this award, as is the Photography Club.

The 2014 winners are: First Place: Jessica Westmark (Bluffton HS) for “Gator” (above); Second Place: Rex Leonard (Bluffton HS) for “The Pelican”; Third Place: Cassandra Knoppel (Battery Creek HS) for “Patterns in Nature”. Two Honorable Mentions were awarded to Bart Hill for “Majestic Creature” and Abigail Rasmussen for “Porcelain” (both of Bluffton HS). A special award for creativity was awarded to Sara Kardohely (Battery Creek HS) for “Sea Shell”

Left to Right : Dennis Vernon (Bluffton HS teacher); Jessica Westmark, Rex Leonard, Barbara Westcott (award patron), Cassandra Knoppel, Rebecca Bass (President of Photo Club Beaufort), Sara Kardohley and John Cullinen (Battery Creek HS)