Ten years of Cotter Photo Club


Jonah Heckman

The Photography Club’s 2021 photos on display in Cotter High School.

It’s now been a decade since religion teacher Mary Hansel Parlin and a group of aspiring photographers started the Cotter Photography Club.

“Ten years ago, students came up to me and said… we wanna do a photo show,” said Mrs. Parlin. “I’m not a photographer. I did it because students wanted a photo club.”

Every year, during the weekend of Cotter’s Fall play, members of the photography club select a theme and display five of their best photos to fit that theme.

“I fell in love with taking photos in 4th grade,” said photography club member Bethany Finnegan. “My 5th grade teacher did a photography class and I have learned a lot about photos through 4-H programs as well. Since then I have entered some pictures photos in competitions and have entered them in the local county fair. In the previous year my photos have done good at the county level and have been displayed at the MN state fair.”

After ten years of running the photo club, Mrs. Parlin is going to be succeeded by a new leader next year, and she says she has high hopes for the club’s future. “Art teacher [Spence Hodge] is taking over in January. I’m hoping since he’s an artist and a photographer, he can do more with it,” said Mrs. Parlin.