Friendship Darcy Makena AX AXJ CGC

We had been running a Fundraiser Raffle for our Gotta Dance Documentary Film production since the summer of 2005, the goal to engage 400 separate participants. Given the fact that our huge Golden playground in the sky has thousands of visitors daily, it was believed that this truly was an obtainable target. But, we struggled until April 2006 to meet this goal.

Given this lag, it was surely hard to keep smiling especially since our own Darcywhose glorious smile graces every one of our 1000+ pageshad just left my side for The Bridge, due to losing her own battle with cancer.

Golden Mom Rochelle & Darcy
To bring much needed cheer, and to celebrate Darcy's (shown here with Mom) contribution to all of our lives, as well as the giving spirit of all who have purchased tickets, we created this fun Sweet Golden Smiles photo contest. Only those persons who had purchased at least two raffle tickets were able to submit entries. Submitted photos were to reflect our "Sweet Smiling Golden" theme, i.e., the pictured Golden needed to be smiling.

The wonderful prizes for our contest included an imported handmade pillow/blanket, Lenox collectible, Bella and Company apparel and wares, Golden themed books, and handmade mini-photo albums.

Our winners were determined by a group of gifted, Golden-loving judges, that included artist Mia Lane, artist Karen Killian, and author Patricia Kennedy. The following comprehensive scoring criteria required the judges to provide up to 30 points for each of our entries.

Judges' Scoring Criteria

10 points: Impact/Appeal
How eye-catching and distinctive is this photo? How compelled are you to look at this smiling face? How much does the photo make you smile? Does this photo make a good, strong statement? Does the first glance carry its complete meaning?

10 points: Creativity/Originality
Does the photographer show an artistic eye? Did the photographer use creative techniques to make an interesting effect? Does the photo have an individuality to it that sets it apart from the rest of the entries?

10 points: Technical/Composition

Is the photo in focus or, if blurry, is this done in a clearly intentional artistic way? Is there good placement of the subject matter? Are there harmonious proportions? Does the photo show pleasing colors with clarity and correct exposure? Can you make out the details in the shadows?

Contest Results
There were so many wonderful entries that we decided to have a Ten Top Winners list. As the point differences between many in this grouping were quite low, there was also a listing of Honorable Mentionsthe ten next highest rated entries. All of our heartfelt entries will always have a home here at the Land of PureGold, and can be referenced below.

  Winners & Honorable Mentions         Contest Entries          Board Member Goldens' Smiles