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Tracey Anne Smith of Hooksett won first and third prizes in the 2012 New Hampshire Lilac Photo Contest. (COURTESY)

As lilac season blooms, so does statewide NH photo contest

Get out your cameras - lilac season is blooming across New Hampshire.

That brief, fragrant period when lilacs - purple, white and every shade in between - blossom has been a beloved sign of spring since Colonial days.

The purple lilac was named the official state flower in 1919, but the plant's history goes back much further: It's believed that the first lilac planting in the state was on the waterfront grounds of the Wentworth-Coolidge Mansion, the Portsmouth home of New Hampshire's first Colonial governor, in 1750.

To mark the season, the 18th annual New Hampshire lilac photo contest, sponsored by the Governor's Lilac and Wildflower Commission, is now open.

Amateur photographers may submit up to three photos of lilacs.The photos must be taken this year in a community setting in New Hampshire, and must be submitted by June 30.

Some of last year's winning photos are shown here. To see more, or for details about the contest including rules and an entry form, visit www.nh.gov/lilacs.

For more information, contact Guy Giunta Jr. at 271-6476.



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