Small Town News


The Journal wins big state awards

The Camp Verde Journal of Camp Verde, Arizona

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The Camp Verde Journal took home some major awards at the Arizona Newspapers Association's annual Better Newspapers Contest. Awards were announced Sept. 26, at the conclusion of the ANA Fall Convention and annual meeting at Wild Horse Pass Hotel and Casino south of Chandler.

This year, 54 newspapers and eight high schools entered in the Better Newspapers Contest for a total of 1,633 entries, judged this year by the Nebraska Press Association. The Better Newspapers Contest consists of eight categories that measure the overall quality of the newspapers and 24 categories that honor individuals who contribute to journalism excellence.

The Journal competes against non-weekly newspapers with circulation under 3,500 issues. The Journal won first for Editorial Page Excellence, which is weighed by the strength of editorials, number and diversity letters to the editor, and design elements like the editorial cartoon and People on the Street.

The Journal also won third for Page Design Excellence. The category compares all the pages of newspaper for layout, design, readability, graphic elements and use of photos.

"We take pride in publishing The Journal so that its pages appeals to our readers, especially our Opinion Page, the second-most read page of the paper after the front page," Managing Editor Christopher Fox Graham said.

The Journal's sister newspaper, the Sedona Red Rock News, also won some major awards. The NEWS competes against other non-daily newspapers with circulation between 3,500 to 10,000 copies.

The NEWS' website won first place for Newspaper Online Site/Web Page. The NEWS also took third place for Page Design Excellence.

For coverage of the 2014 Slide Fire, four-NEWS staff members took second place in the Best Sustained Coverage or Series. ANA awarded Assistant Managing Editor Ron Eland, Copy Editors Andrew Pardiac and Michael Rinker and Graham for their coverage of the fire and its impact on Oak Creek Canyon and the Verde Valley community.

Rinker and Pardiac won for their headline writing. "Tattoos can be more than just skin deep" and various headlines won Rinker first place while Pardiac took third for "G.I. with some Joe" and his other headlines.

Rinker also won first for Best News Story for "Cottonwood airport at risk of losing FAA funds," an enterprise story that explored how noncom-pliant property contracts could have cost the airport hundreds of thousands of dollars from the Federal Aviation Administration. Rinker took third for Best Sports Column for "Running the full distance," a first-person column about his Sedona Marathon run.

Photojournalist Jordan Reece took second place for Best News Photograph for an aerial photo tied to the story "Slide Fire burns 5,000 acres." The photo was made possible thanks to pilot Ted Grussing who offered Reece a flight over during the first days of the blaze. Reece also took second in Best Feature Photograph "Fly Me to the Moon" which captured a hot air balloon appearing to fly toward the moon, which was setting in the early morning.

"I am very proud of our editorial department's awards this year," Graham said. "Our staff works closely together and the fact we won so many awards in so many different categories demonstrate that we use each staff member's talents to the best of their ability.

"Our Slide Fire coverage award shows how we come together as a team when our community needs accurate information that affects their daily lives."

The NEWS won several Excellence in Advertising Awards for advertisements built for customers by the newspaper's staff.

In online ads, the NEWS took second in Best Online Ad: Dynamic for Coldwell Banker's "Live in paradise" ad and third for Best Online Ad: Static for Crystal Magic's "New Year Sale" ad.

General Manager Kyle Larson, Brenda Steves, Debbie Hiner took second in Best Paid Ad Series: Black & White in ads for Mexidona Fine Imports.

Larson and Hiner also won second for Best Pro Bono/Public Service Ad, "For the Love of Sedona," built for the city of Sedona.

"Our team worked hard. I'm proud of how well we did in both the advertising and editorial awards," Larson said. "However, there's always room for improvement as we strive to bring the best product we can to our readers."

In the Scholastic Division, for Small Schools in the 3A, 2A, 1A division, The Sting from Sedona Red Rock High School tied for second with The Pegasus from Buena High School. The Sting is written and designed by SRRHS students under the direction of journalism teacher Maureen Barton and printed by Larson Newspapers at our newsroom in Uptown. SRRHS juniors intern with the NEWS each summer and take their skills back to high school for their senior year.

The Arizona Republic took home the Arizona Newspaper of the Year in the daily category while the Payson Roundup won in the non-daily category.

Copyright 2015 The Camp Verde Journal, Camp Verde, Arizona. All Rights Reserved. This content, including derivations, may not be stored or distributed in any manner, disseminated, published, broadcast, rewritten or reproduced without express, written consent from SmallTownPapers, Inc.

Original Publication Date: October 7, 2015

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