Essay Contest

Hey, kids -- want to win a trip to a national park?

National Parks Traveler is sponsoring an essay contest for students ages 8 to 18. The three grand prize winners will receive lodging for four at one of several national parks, plus some great gear to use on the trip.

The "Take Your Family to the National Parks" contest has three age brackets: 8-11, 12-15, and 16-18.

Essays should be 300 to 500 words for the younger two age brackets and up to 700 words for the 16- to 18-year-olds.

The topic for ages 8-11 is "Why are national parks good for kids?"

The 12- to 15-year-olds are asked to write about "If you were to write President Obama telling him why the National Parks should be saved, what would you say and why?"

And for the 16-18 age group, the essay should be on "What are the greatest threats to our national parks and how can they be countered?"

Essays will be accepted online at starting Feb. 1.