21st Annual
Palo Alto Weekly Photo Contest
First Place, Bay Area Images
Adult

 

"We Are the Champions"
By Paige K. Parsons


Click on photo for larger image.

About Paige Parsons

Every year, kids at Peninsula School in Menlo Park hold a go-cart race in the school's largest field. There are clouds of dust and wild creations and lots of excited squeals but no losers. Everybody wins. In Paige K. Parsons' prize-winning photo, it's clear that the jubilant boys feel like champions. This is a landmark event for them: The eighth-grade boys were about to graduate from Peninsula, and for whatever reason they had never competed in the go-cart race before, Parsons said. This time they were ready. After lots of work at home on the "incredibly well-engineered" go-cart, the boys competed this past June, Parsons said. "This was their very first race. You can see how excited they are." Parsons' 13-year-old daughter just graduated from Peninsula, and her 9-year-old son still attends. The private school is a special place for the family and for Parsons, a professional photographer. "I just love photographing people who are passionate about what they do. At Peninsula, it's just full of people like that and experiences like that," she said. Parsons, who lives in Palo Alto with her family, usually shoots live-concert photography. (Her other first-prize photo, "Wayne," is in the Portraits category.) She has earned prizes twice before in the Weekly's contest, but this is the first time she's taken the blue ribbon. In a way, this photo has some of the same energy as a concert shot, with excited, glowing faces taking center stage. The boys seem to have a few intent fans on the sidelines, too.

--Rebecca Wallace