Aerial Greenbelt Footage (Drone) Contest

While the contest only has boundaries of the Hardin County lines, the goal of the contest is to gain incredible footage of Hardin Counties’ Greatest resource – The Iowa River Greenbelt.

The 2019 Aerial Greenbelt Footage contest was officially kicked off on July 15th, 2019. The contest, hosted in partnership between Hardin County Conservation, Iowa Falls Area Development Commission, Ackley Development Commission, Ellsworth Community College and Hawth Productions

12/6/2019 UPDATE

A new official deadline has not been set, but organizers said they expect it to be some time in November 2020. The total prize money awarded will be $9,000.

11/15/2019 UPDATE

To our Contestants & Sponsors:

With the size, scope, excitement and momentum of our competition, we have decided it is in everyone's best interest to extend the contest timeline. This entire contest is chartering new territory in capturing legally usable commercial aerial footage from professional pilots, and starting out we weren't certain what kind of response we'd even get.

Marketing efforts didn't gain real momentum until late July, and we unfortunately missed out on some opportunity for excellent aerial footage from Spring and Summer months.

Extending the deadline until next year can ensure we reach an even wider audience of UAV Pilots, as well as capture the full spectrum of the Greenbelts' natural beauty, from all its seasons.

An extended deadline will also get the absolute most out of our much appreciated sponsorship dollars! We felt as a group that it wasn't doing sponsorship donations justice to rush the competitions current deadline without seeing a wider variety of prize winning footage.

Thank you for believing in our mission, and we will update everyone as soon as we decide on an alternative end-date and viewing.

Who Can Submit?

The contest is open to any FAA licensed drone pilot with a licensed drone, regardless of residency. Footage filmed with airplanes and helicopters will also be accepted, so long as the pilot can provide proper licensing. 

Contest Categories

The five categories are:

  • Agriculture/Industry
  • Water Sport
  • Land Sport
  • Nature/Scenic
  • Towns/Events.

Contestants may enter a two-minute video submission in any or all of the categories. Contestants are encouraged to edit their submissions. Videos may be up to 2 minutes per submission. Each person may have one submission per category.

Cash Prize

The top submission in each category will be awarded a $1,000 cash prize. The grand prize winner, picked via audience vote at the viewing, will receive $2,500.