Each year, the great people at National Geographic have a photo contest to celebrate the brilliance of photography. In 2013, they had 7,000 entries from more than 150 countries. For 2014, they’re looking to surpass those numbers and the submissions are already coming in at a rapid rate!
Submissions for the 2014 National Geographic Photo Contest will be accepted until October 31st, 2014. There are three categories: People, Places and Nature. The first place winner in each category will win $2,500 and their photograph will be published in National Geographic! The overall Grand Prize Winner gets another $7,500 (so $10k total) and will also  have the honor to take part in the National Geographic Photography Seminar in January 2015.
If you know any photographers, let them know about this opportunity! More details are available on the NatGeo contest page here. Below are some of the most notable submissions to the contest so far! Enjoy.
Sunset Milky Way (by Yosuke Yamada)
Capturing the Milky Way beautifully during a sunset over Uyuni Lake in Bolivia.

Solitude (by Aaron Feinberg)
At Ke’e Beach in Kaua’i, Hawai’i, a lone wave breaks.

Walking On Water (by Dave Kan)
A wild kangaroo bounds on a lake like it’s walking on water in Noosa, Queensland, Australia.

The Really Scary Festival (by Hidenobu Suzuki)
To worship God, people in Toyohashi, Aithi, Japan blow up the traditional hand tube fireworks.

Destroyed Homs (by Sergey Ponomarev)
Above the destroyed homes in the Khalidiya district of Homs, Syria, birds fly to break the stillness.

The Blue Universe (by Hiroki Kondo)
At Hitachi Seaside Park in Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan, every April – May blue nemophila flowers by the millions create magnificent scenery such as this.

From The Sky (by Montse Grillo)
This lovable green turtle came up to say hello off the coast of Tenerife in the Canary Islands.

Sunrise Plaosan Temple (by Bill Stipp)
People working in rice paddies by Plaosan Temple in Yogyakarta, Indonesia.

A Tree Dreaming (by Christian Spencer)
Under a lonely tree in the Strezlecki Desert of Australia, a flock of galahs made a stop to get some much needed water.

Arctic Hi Five (by Colin Mackenzie)
On the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard in the Arctic Ocean, this polar bear cub waves to the photographer!

Catch of the Decade (by Aaron Baggenstos)
Just a bear having a snack at Katmai National Park, Alaska, USA!

Dreamscape (by Francesco Riccardo Iacomino)
This photo from Jokulsarlon Glaier Lagoon in Iceland is just further proof that I need to visit that place.

The above are just a tiny sample of what has been submitted. Go check out the contest page for literally thousands more!