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Start shooting now for wildlife photo contest

CONYERS -- Shutterbugs with an eye for wildlife photography will have a chance to show off their skills this summer in the Big Haynes Creek Wildlife Festival Backyard Wildlife Photo Contest.

The festival is looking for photos of all types of flora and fauna -- deer, hummingbirds, squirrels, flowers, frogs and other denizens of the natural world. The contest is being held in partnership with BJ's Membership Club.

Those interested in entering have until Aug. 10 to submit their entries. Photos from trail cameras will be accepted. Participants can enter as many as three photos.

The top three photos submitted will be on display during the Big Haynes Creek Wildlife Festival Aug. 25-26 at the Georgia International Horse Park. Festival-goers will vote to determine the winner of the contest.

The first-place winner will receive a $100 gift card to BJ's. One lucky voter will receive two free tickets to the Georgia Aquarium.

For information on how to submit photos, go to the festival's website at www.bighaynescreekwildlifefestival.com or call 770-860-4190.

The Big Haynes Creek Wildlife Festival is in its sixth year at the horse park. The festival provides activities such as wildlife exhibits, reptile shows, birds of prey, story-telling, living history, arts, crafts and more.

This year the festival will focus on the owl and the importance of the species in the environment. Guests will be invited to meet the owl stars of the Birds of Prey show, including a screech owl and a great horned owl.

Jason Clark with the Southeast Reptile Rescue will return with the Reptile Wagon, providing an up-close encounter with snakes, turtles and alligators.

The living history section of the festival will provide guests with a glimpse into the past when Creek and Cherokee Indians lived off the land.

Admission to the festival is $5 per person, with children age 4 and under admitted for free. Free parking is available at the horse park.

For more information, call the Conyers Welcome Center at 770-602-2606 or 1-800-CONYERS.