December 2018 Photo Contest Winner: Robyn Antill of Calgary, Canada

Congratulations Robyn! You’ve won a year of free dues! The theme for December was festivals and celebrations. Don’t give up if you weren’t the lucky one. Have a favorite photo? Please keep submitting! The theme for our March 2019 contest is “Animals you’ve met traveling.” Click for contest details »

“Punakha Drubchen” Bhutan Photo / Robyn Antill

This was taken on Feb. 21,  2018, in Punakha, Bhutan, for the Punakha Drubchen festival, which also coincided with the 5th king’s—Jigme khesar Namgay Wangchuk—birthday. Punakha Drubchen is a unique festival as it hosts the dramatic re-creation of the scene from the 17th-century battle with the Tibetan army. This is one of the oldest festivals of the district. It shows a detailed dramatization of how the local Bhutanese militia duped and defeated an invading Tibetan army and forced them to withdraw. This 17th-century event was also the beginning of the consolidation process of Bhutan as a country, and it is historically very significant for the country. This event is also a celebration of Bhutanese roots.


Dorothy Thompson, Richland Center, Wiscsonsin

Photo: Dorothy Thompson

Naadam Festival, Ulaan Baator, Mongolia: The sulde—spirit banners—carried by the horsemen play a major part in Naadam. When a warrior died, his soul was thought to live in his spirit banner.

Lou Padgug, Sacramento, California

Photo: Lou Padgug

Procession of Virgins and Saints: In Písac, Peru, a large group of people came out of the church, some carrying religious statues. In Inca times they carried mummies, but the Spanish replaced the images with virgins and saints.