Silver Lake Sand Dunes Photo Takes Grand Prize in Pure Michigan Beach Challenge

Monday, July 07, 2014

LANSING – After 10 days and nearly 2,000 photos of Michigan beaches submitted to Pure Michigan through Instagram, Twitter and michigan.org, the grand prize photograph in the Pure Michigan Beach Instagram Challenge was announced today. The winning photo, submitted by Gina Ferwerda of Silver Lake, features kayakers on Lake Michigan at Silver Lake Sand Dunes. 

Beach Challenge WinnerThe kayakers in the photo are Ferwerda’s daughter, Ariana, and her friends on their last day at the beach together before high school graduation.  

“As I was capturing this moment, I knew how much they would treasure this photo one day thinking back to these carefree days,” Ferwerda said. “Pure Michigan to me is the best state for spectacular seasonal activities and I was happy to showcase the beauty of my hometown and the Silver Lake Sand Dunes.” 

In total, 1,933 photos were submitted during the 10-day Instagram challenge. The goal of the challenge – a joint effort between Pure Michigan, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) – was to showcase the variety of beaches in Michigan, as well as the types of activities that travelers and residents can enjoy during a day at the beach.

To view the complete gallery of photos submitted during the contest visit michigan.org/beachchallenge. Daily challenge winners were shared on the Pure Michigan Instagram page and can also be found on the Pure Michigan blog. Daily winners were as follows:

  • Favorite Beach to Catch a Sunrise or Sunset – Grand Haven State Park Beach, submitted by Bob Peskorse Jr.
  • Favorite Dog-Friendly Beach – Empire Beach, submitted by Sarah Hunt
  • Favorite State Park Beach – Orchard Beach State Park, submitted by Deb Neerken
  • Favorite Beach to Fly a Kite – Manistique, submitted by Carrie Shea
  • Favorite Beach for Watersports – Stoney Creek Metropark, submitted by Rainie Mills
  • Favorite Beach for Fishing from the Shore or Dock – Copper Harbor, submitted by Matthew Winn
  • Favorite Beach to Experience Clear Waters – Lake Huron in Rogers City, submitted by Rachel Welch
  • Favorite Beach to Take a Long Walk – Sleeping Bear Dune National Lakeshore, submitted by Steve Keighly
  • Favorite Beach to Hang Out with Family and Friends – Tiscornia Beach in St. Joseph, submitted by Jason McIver
  • Favorite Beach to Watch Fireworks – St. Ignace, submitted by Shawn Kellogg

Each of the daily challenge winners received a Personal Sun Care Kit from the Pure Michigan Store. As the grand prize winner, Ferwerda received an “Ultimate Pure Michigan Beach Day” package that will include a beach towel, a fire pit, a tackle box, a cooler and a sun care kit among other prizes.

Pure Michigan is a brand representing business, talent and tourism initiatives across Michigan. These efforts are driven by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, which serves as the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business growth, jobs and opportunity with a focus on helping grow Michigan’s economy.

For more on the MEDC and its initiatives, visit: michiganbusiness.org. For Michigan travel news, updates and information, visit michigan.org.

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MEDC/Pure Michigan Contact: Michelle Grinnell, 517-241-0251, grinnellm@michigan.org 
DEQ Contact: Brad Wurfel, 517-284-6713, wurfelb@michigan.gov 
DNR Contact: Debbie Munson Badini, 906-226-1352, badinid@michigan.gov 

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