Tribune wins 4 awards at annual Minnesota Newspaper Association banquet

Published 7:25 am Sunday, January 29, 2012

BLOOMINGTON — The Albert Lea Tribune brought home four awards from the annual Minnesota Newspapers Association banquet on Thursday.

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“The Tribune staff does a good job, and it is nice that our peers recognize our finest work,” said Tribune Publisher Scott Schmeltzer. “There were more entries this year by all newspapers, so winning anything is quite prestigious.”

The trade association hands out awards for first and second places in each category in its Better Newspaper Contest. The contest this year was judged by newspaper professionals in North Carolina. The Star Tribune and Pioneer Press do not participate.

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Creative Director Stacey Bahr won first place for Best Advertisement. Her entry competed against all dailies in Minnesota, meaning she was up against advertisements from newspapers three, four or five times the size of the Tribune. There were 67 entries in that category.

The ad was for the Venus edition of Southern Minnesota magazine. The judges wrote, “Clean, visually stunning ad. Great play on a movie poster.”

The Tribune won first place for Editorial Page as a Whole. It has won either first or second in that category every year since 2007 except once. The Tribune competed against daily newspaper 10,000 circulation and under in the category.

The judges wrote, “Local focus is obvious. Little elements help draw the reader’s eye to the page. Good variety of columns.”

For the second year in a row, the Tribune won second place for General Excellence. It competed against newspapers with a circulation of 10,000 and under.

“The Tribune stands out thanks to its uber-local coverage of both news and sports,” the judges wrote. “It’s easy to see local news is important to the staff and leadership of this paper. The Tribune’s editorial page is, by far, the best in this category; every edition I read had local columns and editorials, along with letters to the editor — the lifeblood of any good editorial page. Plenty of good-looking ads.”

The Tribune’s “Everyday Heroes: Progress 2011” edition from February 2011 won second place in the Special Section category. The Tribune competed against all daily newspapers in this category.

The judges wrote, “The hard work put forth by this staff is most evident. The variety of material is impressive. Good work!”

About Tim Engstrom

Tim Engstrom is the editor of the Albert Lea Tribune. He resides in Albert Lea with his wife, two sons and dog.

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