Are you a Great Photographer? Like to Travel? Win this Contest and become Aurora Expeditions Next Photographer

Calling All Photographers!

Win the Chance to Become Aurora Expeditions’ Next Official Photographer and an Arctic Adventure Worth AUS$10,000!

February 5th 2015, USA and London: Aurora Expeditions, polar cruising specialists, and the pioneers of Arctic and Antarctica adventures, are on the hunt for their new official photographer.

This exciting opportunity calls for everyone from professional photographers, budding enthusiasts and snap-happy vacationers. Anyone with a talent behind the lens and the love of capturing unforgettable moments has the chance to become the winner of Aurora Expedition’s exciting new photographic competition.

As the new official Polar paparazzo, the winner will travel abroad the Polar Pioneer on Aurora Expedition’s Across the Arctic Circle Voyage. Worth a staggering AUS$10,000, this incredible adventure, from Aberdeen to Longyearbyen, will be the breath-taking backdrop for 14 days worth of spectacular photo opportunities.

To enter, simply upload your best travel photo, and in 50 words or less tell Aurora Expeditions why they should pick you to become their next official Polar Photographer.

For the next step, each entrant must encourage their friends and family to vote on their image. The most voted for images will have the bigger chance of winning. Simple!

A panel of travel and photography experts will then judge the images with the most votes, before choosing a winner.

The photograph can be from anywhere in the world but must fit into one of the following categories: people, nature, landscapes or wildlife.

HOW TO ENTER

Go to the Aurora Expeditions Facebook page and click on the competition link to access the competition page.

1. Upload your photo

2. Tell us in 50 words or less why we should pick you as our Arctic Photographer

3. Fill in your details (so we can contact you if you are the winner)

4. Share your entry with your friends and family and encourage them to vote for you.

The more you promote your entry, the greater the chance of increasing your votes.

Competition closes Sunday, 15 March 2015. Winner will be announced on Friday 28 March 2014. Refer to full terms and conditions here: Competition T&C

PRIZE DETAILS

As the official Arctic photographer the winner will be awarded with return economy airfares from their nearest capital city to Aurora Expeditions’ voyage starting/ending points as well as a berth on their 14-day Across the Arctic Circle expedition departing 30 June 2015.

From Scotland, the winner will capture the Stone Age villages, Viking relics and spectacular birdlife, before exploring Norway’s dramatic coastline and picturesque fishing villages. The brand new photographer must be prepared to snap the celebrations as they cross the Arctic Circle and enter a polar wonderland where the sun never sets.

View full voyage itinerary here. http://www.auroraexpeditions.com.au/expeditions/expedition/across-the-arctic-circle

END

For more information please contact Aurora Expeditions on +61 2 9252 1033, info or visit http://www.auroraexpeditions.co.uk

For further press information please contact:

Frangelica Flook frangelica.flook

Emily Olsen emily.olsen

T: 020 7978 4534, M: 07747 606 898

Notes to Editors:

About Aurora Expeditions

Aurora Expeditions is an Australian-owned adventure company specializing in expedition cruises to wild and remote places. Always travelling in small groups of 54 or less, Aurora Expeditions provide their travellers with the chance to have an intimate experience in these regions with their flexible, innovative itineraries. The aim of each voyage is to provide as many landings as possible, allowing passengers to experience the destination first hand. Each voyage is led by an expedition team of expert naturalists, geologists, historians, staff and crew who help to unlock the wonders of these special places. Deeply committed to education and preservation of the environment, Aurora Expeditions’ philosophy is to respectfully visit wilderness areas in turn creating ambassadors for their protection.


Peace in Natue & Ecotourism

David Leonard kabambo

David Leonard kabambo

Managing Director/ Destination at PEACE IN NATURE & ECOTOURISM

Greeting from peace in nature & ecotourism.

Peace in nature & ecotourism (PNE) is Community ecotourism organization , dedicated to improve the livelihoods of local communities living close to protected areas by involving them in various income generating activities which are related to conservation and ecotourism. The PNE upholds that in order to break the circle of poverty in the community, community participation in natural resource management as well as provision of a joint learning experience in sustainable ecotourism and conservation are key tools for development.

We are planning to create program which involving children living close to protected area on conservation program, Children will be training about wildlife conservation in primary school, all programs will be recorded on Documentary and distributed on TV/ television the programs, the aims is giving children voice , initiating communication between children and children and children and adults and including children as partner in Conservation ,this will done through video documentary children will express themselves and reflect their own lives and eyes about poaching in their community land.

As you are stake holder of conservation we seeking advice from you about this programs we intend to implement on near future, we will appreciate to hear from you

visit website at.www.peaceinnature.org

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Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference 2012

Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference 2012

The Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference 2012 has officially released its Call of Posters. Please help us get the word out. Here is the link: http://www.ecotourismconference.org/estc12-poster-session. The registration for the conference is also open at this time. Please feel free to contact me with any questions.

Thanks!

Mercedes Hunt, Events Manager

The International Ecotourism Society | www.ecotourism.org

p: +1 202 506 5033 ext x12

e: mhunt
ESTC on Facebook: ESTC.Tourism

ESTC on Twitter: @ESTC_Tourism | Join the Conversation! #ESTC12

Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference (ESTC) |www.ecotourismconference.org
The ESTC brings together innovative minds from across the industry to discuss practical ideas and solutions that inspire positive changes. Sept 17-19, 2012, Monterey, California, USA

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Lloyd v. Bourassa, 2002 Me. Super. LEXIS 132

Lloyd v. Bourassa, 2002 Me. Super. LEXIS 132
C. Gary Lloyd, Plaintiff v. Tom Bourassa, Sugarloaf Mountain Corp., and United States Cycling, Inc. d/b/a National Off-Road Bicycle Association, Defendants
Civil Action Docket No. 01-CV-039
Superior Court of Maine, Hancock County
2002 Me. Super. LEXIS 132
August 20, 2002, Decided
August 21, 2002, Filed and Entered
SUBSEQUENT HISTORY: Affirmed by, Remanded by, Sub nomine at Lloyd v. Sugarloaf Mt. Corp., 2003 ME 117, 2003 Me. LEXIS 131 (Sept. 25, 2003)
DISPOSITION: [*1] Plaintiff’s motion for judgment on pleadings denied. Motions for summary judgment filed by defendants U.S.A. Cycling and Sugarloaf granted. Judgment granted to defendants on Counts II and III of plaintiff’s amended complaint.
CORE TERMS: cycling, membership, summary judgment, sponsor, bicycle, successors, mandatory, off-road, counterclaims, collision, promoter, mountain, collectively, indirectly, genuine, assigns, travel, entities, sport, waive, heirs, wanton negligence, willful, law enforcement agencies, matter of law, own negligence, issue of material fact, legal representatives, successors in interest, property owners
JUDGES: Ellen A. Gorman.
OPINION BY: Gorman
OPINION
ORDER
PROCEDURAL HISTORY
On June 22, 1995, C. Gary Lloyd applied for membership in “USCF . NORBA . NCCA.” After filling in some identifying information on the first page of the application form, Lloyd placed his signature on the second page, under a section entitled “Acknowledgment of Risk and Release of Liability.” That section contained the following language:
Please accept this as my application for membership and a USCF, NORBA and/or NCCA license.
I acknowledge that cycling is an inherently dangerous sport in which I participate at my own risk and that the United States Cycling Federation, Inc. is a non-profit corporation formed to advance the sport of cycling, the efforts of which directly benefit me. In consideration of the agreement of the USCF to issue a license to me, hereby on behalf of myself, my heirs, assigns and personal representatives, I release and forever discharge the USCF, its employees, agents, members, [*2] sponsors, promoters and affiliates from any and all liability, claim, loss, cost or expense, and waive and promise not to sue on any such claims against any such person or organization, arising directly or indirectly from or attributable in any legal way to any negligence, action or omission to act of any such person or organization in connection with sponsorship, organization or execution of any bicycle racing or sporting event, including travel to and from such event, in which I may participate as a rider, team member or spectator.
On August 11, 1995, with his NORBA membership in hand, Lloyd traveled to Kingfield, Maine to participate in a mountain biking event sponsored by the Sugarloaf Mountain Corporation known as the Widowmaker Challenge. At Kingfield, Lloyd signed the Official Entry Form, which included the following language under the heading of “Athlete’s Entry & Release Form 1“:
I fully realize the dangers of participating in a bicycle race and fully assume the risks associated with such participation including, by way of example, and not limitations, the following: the dangers of collision with pedestrians, vehicles, other racers and fixed or moving objects; the [*3] dangers arising from surface hazards, equipment failure, inadequate safety equipment and weather conditions; and the possibility of serious physical and/or mental trauma or injury associated with athletic cycling competition.
I hereby waive, release and discharge for myself, my heirs, executors, administrators, legal representatives, assigns, and successors in interest (hereinafter collectively “successors”) any and all rights and claims which I have or which may hereafter occur to me against the sponsors of this event, the National Off-Road Bicycle Association, the promoter and any promoting organization(s), property owners, law enforcement agencies, all public entities, and special districts and…. through or by which the events will be held for any and all damages which may be sustained by me directly or indirectly in connection with, or arising out of, my participation in or association with the event, or travel to or return from the event . . . .
I agree, for myself and successors, that the above representations are contractually binding, and are not mere recitals, and that should I or my successors assert my claim in contravention of this agreement, I or my successors shall [*4] be liable for the expenses incurred (including legal fees) incurred by the other party or parties in defending, unless the other parties are financially adjudged liable on such claim for willful and wanton negligence.
1 To avoid confusion, the “release” signed in June shall be referred to as the “Membership Release,” and the release signed in August shall be referred to as the “Event Release.”
Lloyd registered to participate in both the cross-country race and the downhill challenge. While completing a mandatory practice run on August 11, 1995, Lloyd was involved in a collision with another participant, Tom Bourassa.
On August 10, 2001, Lloyd filed suit against Bourassa, Sugarloaf Mountain Corporation, and United States Cycling Federation d/b/a National Off-Road Bicycle Association, asserting negligence claims against all three. Soon thereafter, Lloyd learned that he had failed to name the appropriate corporate defendant, and filed a motion to amend the complaint. Over objection, that motion was granted, [*5] and U.S.A. Cycling, Inc. replaced United States Cycling Federation d/b/a National Off-Road Bicycle Association.
In their Answers, both Sugarloaf and U.S.A. Cycling responded that Lloyd’s claims were barred by the releases quoted above. In addition, both asserted Counterclaims against Lloyd for breaching the terms of the releases. Both demanded Lloyd be held liable for any expenses they incurred in defending his suit.
On January 25, 2002, Lloyd filed a Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings with respect to Defendants’ Counterclaims and Affirmative Defenses of Release and Waiver. Sugarloaf Mountain Corporation opposed that motion and filed its own Motion for Summary Judgment on March 11, 2002. U.S.A. Cycling also opposed the plaintiff’s motion, and filed its Motion for Summary Judgment on April 11, 2002. All of the motions requested that the court review the language of the releases and determine whether and how it affected the outcome of this suit. A hearing on all three motions was held on July 3, 2002. Any findings included below are based upon the properly submitted affidavits and statements of material fact. Specifically excluded from that category is the affidavit form Attorney [*6] Greif.
DISCUSSION
1. Plaintiff’s Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings
The plaintiff argues that he is entitled to judgment on the defendants’ counterclaims and on their affirmative defenses of release and waiver because “the release, 2” by its terms, does not apply to U.S.A. Cycling, does not apply to the facts of this case, does not protect the defendants from their own negligence, and is unenforceable as contrary to public policy.
2 Plaintiff did not address the language of the Membership Release in his motion.
In considering a motion for judgment on the pleadings, the court is required to accept all of the responding party’s pleadings as true, and draw all reasonable inferences in its favor. Judgment is only appropriate if the responding party can prove no set of facts that would entitle it to relief. The plaintiff has failed to meet that burden.
Applicability to U.S.A. Cycling
In support of his first assertion, Lloyd argued that, because the Event Release does not mention U.S.A. Cycling, [*7] that defendant is not within the category of potentially released entities. With its response to this motion, U.S.A. Cycling filed an affidavit by Barton Enoch to establish that NORBA, a named sponsor of the Widowmaker, was the off-road division of U.S.A. Cycling, Inc. The clear language of the Entry Release covers sponsors, including U.S.A. Cycling d/b/a NORBA.
As mentioned above, Lloyd applied for membership in the United States Cycling Federation (USCF) and NORBA in June 1995. Soon thereafter, USCF merged into a new corporation, U.S.A. Cycling, Inc, that assumed all of its rights and responsibilities. By signing the Membership Release, Lloyd released U.S.A. Cycling, Inc. from responsibility for any accidents that might occur during his participation in any race events it sponsored.
Definition of Event
Lloyd has argued that the strictly construed language of the Event Release does not cover accidents that occur during the training run. In support of this argument, he has cited Doyle v. Bowdoin College, 403 A.2d 1206 (Me. 1979.) In that case, the Law Court said “releases absolving a defendant of liability for his own negligence must expressly spell out [*8] ‘with the greatest particularity’ the intention of the parties contractually to extinguish negligence liability.” Doyle, at 1208. Contrary to the plaintiff’s assertions, the language of the Event Release does precisely that:
I hereby waive, release and discharge for myself, my heirs, executors, administrators, legal representatives, assigns, and successors in interest (hereinafter collectively “successors”) any and all rights and claims which I have or which may hereafter occur to me against the sponsors of this event, the National Off-Road Bicycle Association, the promoter and any promoting organization(s), property owners, law enforcement agencies, all public entities, and special districts and properties . . . . through or by which the events will be held for any and all damages which may be sustained by me directly or indirectly in connection with, or arising out of, my participation in or association with the event, or travel to or return from the event . . . . (emphasis added)
All parties have agreed that the training run was a mandatory part of the event. To interpret the Event Release in such a convoluted fashion that it excludes a mandatory part of the [*9] event from the term “event” defies logic and is contrary to the intent of the parties as demonstrated by the plain language of the release. Hardy v. St. Clair, 1999 ME 142, 739 A.2d 368.
Public Policy
Although releases of liability are “traditionally disfavored,” in Maine that disfavor has resulted in strict interpretation rather than prohibition. Doyle v. Bowdoin College, Id. The cases cited by plaintiff in support of his contrary argument are from other jurisdictions and do not accurately describe the law in Maine. When asked to consider the issue raised here, both Maine state courts and the First Circuit have consistently enforced the language of releases. See, e.g., Hardy v. St. Clair, 1999 ME 142, 739 A.2d 368; McGuire v. Sunday River Skiway Corp., 1994 WL 505035 (D.Me.)(Hornby, J.), aff’d 47 F.3d 1156 (1st Cir. 1995). Despite his reference to a “contract of adhesion,” Lloyd was not compelled to sign either release. He chose to sign both because he wanted to participate in an inherently risky sport. He is free to make such choices, but must also accept responsibility for what happens as a result [*10] of that choice.
For the reasons stated above, plaintiff’s motion for judgment on the pleadings is denied.
2. Defendants’ Motions for Summary Judgment
The Law Court has addressed motions for summary judgment on many occasions:
In reviewing a summary judgment, we examine the evidence in the light most favorable to the nonprevailing party to determine whether the record supports the conclusion that there is no genuine issue of material fact and that the prevailing party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law. (citation omitted) In testing the propriety of a summary judgment, we accept as true the uncontroverted facts properly appearing in the record. (citation omitted)
Champagne v. Mid-Maine Med. Ctr., 1998 ME 87, P5, 711 A.2d 842, 844. The issue is not whether there are any disputes of fact, but whether any of the disputes involve a “genuine” issue of “material” fact. See Rule 56(c). After reviewing the record provided with these standards in mind, the court must conclude that there are no genuine issues of disputed fact.
Both Lloyd and the defendants agree that Lloyd was required to complete a practice run in order to participate [*11] in the Widowmaker Challenge. All of them agree that Lloyd signed both releases before he took that mandatory run, and all agree that he was involved in a collision with another bicyclist during that run. As was discussed above, the practice run and any problems encountered during it are covered by the terms of the releases Lloyd signed. The Membership Release contains express language releasing claims arising from negligence. The Entry Release contains express language describing the types of accidents or dangers covered by the release, including “the dangers of collision with … other racers.” The collision between Lloyd and Bourassa was precisely the type of accident contemplated by the parties and waived by Lloyd in both releases.
Lloyd has failed to refer to any evidence in the record that might support his theory that that the Event Release should be seen as a substitution or novation of the Membership Release. Without such evidence, the court may not presume that the parties intended that one contract be substituted for the other.
Lloyd has asserted that the reference in the Event Release to an exception for “willful and wanton negligence” precludes summary judgment. However, [*12] no such tort has yet been recognized in Maine, so no jury could be asked to determine whether the defendants had acted with willful or wanton negligence. That exception is inapplicable in this jurisdiction. In addition, that language refers only to the portion of the Release that discusses the defendants’ right to recover expenses, including legal fees. On the record presented, there are no material issues of disputed fact concerning the language of the releases.
U.S.A. Cycling was a sponsor and Sugarloaf was a promoter of the race. As a matter of law, the court finds that the mandatory practice run was included within the language of the Releases, that the releases are clear and unambiguous, and that the accident Lloyd claims falls entirely within the types of harms contemplated by the parties at the time the releases were signed. There is nothing left to be litigated on either plaintiff’s Complaint against defendants U.S.A. Cycling and Sugarloaf, or on their Counterclaims against him.
For the reasons stated above, the court finds that the releases signed by Lloyd individually and collectively bar any civil action against either U.S.A. Cycling, d/b/a NORBA or against Sugarloaf for [*13] the injuries Lloyd allegedly sustained on August 11, 1995. Summary judgment on plaintiff’s Complaint is granted to U.S.A. Cycling, d/b/a NORBA and to Sugarloaf. In addition, summary judgment against Lloyd on their Counterclaims is granted to both U.S.A. Cycling, d/b/a NORBA and. Within thirty (30) days, counsel for these defendants shall submit proof of expenses, including attorney fees, incurred in defense of this action.
ORDER
Plaintiff’s motion for judgment on the pleadings is denied. The motions for summary judgment filed by defendants U.S.A. Cycling and Sugarloaf are granted. Judgment is granted to those defendants on Counts II and III of plaintiff’s amended complaint.
DOCKET ENTRY
The Clerk is directed to incorporate this Order in the docket by reference, in accordance with M.R.Civ.P. 79(a).
DATED: 20 August 2002
Ellen A. Gorman


Travel Insurance Issues Outlined

There is a great article on understanding travel insurance at Understanding Travel Insurance For Sports And Hazardous Activities. Most people don’t use it, but when you are spending several thousand dollars for an adventure vacation it can be valuable. As an example, if were planning a trip to the North side of Everest this spring, you just had your trip cancelled by the Chinese as they attempt to put the Olympic torch on the summit. Trip insurance might help recover your costs.

Travel insurance is divided into two different types of travel policies, although both are referred to as travel insurance.

The first is a policy that covers your cost of the travel part of the trip. Your flight, your hotel costs, those things that are about a trip. Some of these policies cover lost luggage, the cost of extra charges on a cancelled flight, those pure travel related issues. This type of policy would help you recover your costs if you had been scheduled to climb Mt Everest from the North this spring. Most of these policies would cover your costs in your flight, hotel and some incidental costs for the cancelled trip.

The other type of policy includes health or medical insurance for injuries that may occur while traveling. These policies may or may not include covering a rescue or evacuation. It is this second type of policy this article addresses. They are great gap fillers if your health insurance policy is geographically limited or limited to the extent of coverage or activities covered.

Some policies can be purchased that combine travel coverage and the medical coverage under one policy. Both policies usually cover the extra cost of getting home earlier than planned on a flight due to an illness or an emergency.

The valuable part of the article discusses the difference between an accident on an excursion or activity that is an adventure which would be covered and an adventure activity which would not be covered. One is incidental to the main trip which most insurance policies cover and the other is an adventure trip that is not covered by most policies. That is a trip where you are doing a five day safari riding elephants would not cover falling off an elephant. However a trip to Africa where one afternoon you ride an elephant and fall off would be covered. Read the fine print before you buy and buy the policy that covers your trip and trip needs.

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