Youth Programs

Write About Trees! 2011 Youth Nature Writing Contest

WITS student often write beautifully about their adventures, explorations, and meditations in Oregon’s breathtaking forests. If you have a forest story, Lewis and Clark National Historical Park in Astoria wants to hear it, in the most descriptive language possible. Because of this, their 2011 Youth Nature Writing Contest, open to Oregon and Washington high school students, is themed: “Trees in the Forest.” As their website says: “Your story could be an adventure, a deeply personal moment of reflection, an injustice, a happy experience, a tragedy, or anything you want to write about, as long as it’s nonfiction and it’s about forests or a tree.”

The winner will receive $100. Second place will receive $75, and third $25. Fourth and fifth place will receive water bottles. The top 10 writers will receive certificates of recognition. The top five essays will be posted on their website on Earth Day, April 22, 2011 and on Facebook under “Youth Nature Writing Contest 2011.”

Essays, which must be under 500 words, will be accepted until Thursday, March 31, 2011. Send your essay to: 2011 Youth Nature Writing Contest, Lewis and Clark National Historical Park, 92343 Fort Clatsop Rd., Astoria, OR 97103, or email your entry as a Word or PDF document with the  email heading or subject line as Youth Nature Writing Contest to They will let you know by email or postcard once they’ve received your story.


1. Create a title page with: title, your name, address, phone number, email address, your grade, and the name of your school or home school

2. Put the title on the top of every page of your story, in the upper right corner with the page number.

3. Entries must be typed, double-spaced, in 12 point font.

4. Only put your name on the title or the cover page, not on the story manuscript, to ensure fair, anonymous judging.

5. All entries must be original, nonfiction, written by the author and unpublished.

6. Manuscripts will no be returned. Keep a copy of your story.

7. Entries cannot exceed 500 words.

8. The top five winning authors’ essays, bios, and pictures will be used for publication.

9. The top three authors will provide a recording of their essay for publication.

This is a great opportunity to publish your work, while celebrating the forests that surround you! For more publishing opportunities check out our publishing page (the link is in the side bar —>)

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