Wednesday , 17 July 2024
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Spark contest FAQs



What’s the purpose of this contest?

We want this contest to do three things:

  1. Introduce you to Spark, our new free magazine. This magazine is located in many communities where we haven’t had a presence in the past. We want you to find it so you can grab a copy every two months! Find your nearest Spark distribution location here. (Is there not a Spark distribution location near you? Request one!)
  2. Help us decide what communities to feature in 2017. We want to know what’s awesome in your community! We’ll use your photo entries to determine which communities’ stories we should tell to the broader region in our two magazines.
  3. Get everybody excited about the awesome things happening in communities across the Dakotas! We’d love everyone to be thinking about what “spark” in their community they want to share.

How will you select the winners?

  1. The number of entries we receive from each community will be the biggest determining factor (75 percent of our decision will be based on that).
  2. We’ll also consider how closely those entries support Dakotafire Media’s overall mission and match the topics for upcoming issues (25 percent of the decision).
    • Dakotafire Media’s mission is to spark a rural revival in the Dakotas and beyond by encouraging conversations that help residents rethink what’s happening and reimagine what’s possible.
    • Upcoming topics are:
      • March/April: Neighbors
      • May/June: Entrepreneurs
      • July/August: Rural/Urban Connections
  3. We will narrow down the field to six finalists once the submission period ends on Dec. 11. During the week of Dec. 12-18, we’ll ask the public to vote for their top three choices of those six. Watch for a link to that voting here and on our Facebook page. The top three vote-getters will be our three locations for the next three issues!

What will the community win?

We will go to each of the selected communities to do a Community Spotlight feature. This feature takes a deep look at what’s happening in a community so that we can share its successes and challenges with the broader region. We invest quite a bit of time in these! We want to tell your community’s story well. It’s a great way to get some buzz going about your town in other places, and to renew some community pride within your town.

The good examples in one town serve as a little competitive spark for people in other places. We’ve heard these stories several times: After reading about some positive thing happening down the road, people look around their own town and think, “If they can do that, why can’t we?” Your community’s successes can start a wave of goodness spreading out across the Dakotas!

Community Spotlights run in both Dakotafire and Spark magazines, and can also be found on See some examples of previous Community Spotlights here.

Are you giving away anything else?

Why, yes! We’ll select one image from those entered to share on Dakotafire’s Facebook page every day throughout the campaign. Part of your community’s story might well get out that way, too! All of the images entered* will be available for viewing on

Also, we encourage people to share and like their favorite images on Facebook! Each share and like from Friday–Thursday of each week will be put into a drawing for Dakotafire swag, which we’ll give away each Friday. (Shares have to be public in order to be entered into the drawing.)


*We reserve the right to not post images that are indecent, derogatory or otherwise not appropriate for public viewing. 

Who can enter?

Anyone can enter.

Can any town be entered?

Towns have to be in North Dakota or South Dakota. Since our mission is sparking rural revival, we won’t do a Community Spotlight in towns with populations of 12,000 or more. If people in bigger Dakota towns want to share good things in their communities, we’ll still include those “sparks” in the gallery, and likes and shares of those images are still considered entries into our weekly swag drawings—we just won’t include those in the selection for our Community Spotlight features.

So how do we enter?

Find directions and upload your images here.

Can you enter more than once?

Yes, but each entry has to be of a different thing in your community. (Though someone else could also enter the same “spark” as you, as long as each picture is an original, taken by the entrant.)

When does the contest end?

We’ll close the contest at 11:59 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 11.

What if I have more questions?

E-mail us.


Ready.   Set.   Show us your SPARK!


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