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Emery County Progress is no. 1 in the Utah Press Association contest


Progress takes all the marbles at state convention

Emery County Progress has received the general excellence award for 2006. Employees Brandy Anderson-staff writer, receptionist, Patsy Stoddard-editor, Gary Arrington-sports writer, Jenni Fasselin-advertising manager, Corey Bluemel-editor's assistant, hold the awards for first place in several categories.

The Emery County Progress has won the 2006 general excellence award from the Utah Press Association at the winter convention.

Each year newspapers, from the large dailies to the monthly journals, take the time in early January to fulfill a request from the UPA to enter a journalism, layout and advertising competition called the Better Newspaper Contest for publications from the previous year.

All in all there are 30 categories that papers can enter with tear sheets and entire sections of their paper. The UPA denotes what it wants, and in some cases issues instructions to provide certain issues of the paper for judging in February of the year the awards will be made.

"It was exciting being there and collecting the awards for the Progress," said ECP publisher Richard Shaw. "The paper had done fairly well at our in company contest in California in February, but I didn't know what to expect on Saturday night. I thought we might win some of the award categories, but I was pleasantly surprised when we won the general excellence category."

This years submissions were judged by the Montana Press Association. Utah joins with surrounding states to judge each others papers for their individual contests yearly.

Newspapers competing in the annual UPA contest are divided into four groups.

• Classification one papers have circulations of less than 2,500.

• Classification two papers have circulations between 2,500 and 5,999.

• Classification three papers have circulations of more than 6,000.

• The daily papers in the state also have their own classification.

The Emery County Progress falls into the classification one of the statewide competition.

The best newspapers in the groups are determined by the total number of points received by the publications in 30 different categories. The papers receive points if they are picked first, second or third. Any rankings below that are not listed or counted.

The Emery County Progress won various places in the following categories.

•First place for best lifestyle page.

•First place for the best photo page.

•First for the best feature column.

•First for the best classified pages.

•First for the best use of color in an advertisement.

•First for the best advertising idea.

•Second for the best sports column.

•Second for the best circulation promotion.

•Second for the best run-of-paper advertising campaign.

•Third for the best sports photograph.

•Third for the best in-house promotion campaign.

•Third for the best run-of-paper advertisement.

•Third for best news or feature series.

"It was almost embarrassing the way the paper dominated the awards in its category," said Shaw. "Between accepting awards for the Progress and the Sun Advocate, I was jumping up and walking to the front of the hall to get an award every time they announced."

Shaw attributes the win to a strong editorial team in Emery County as well as a very good advertising department and composition department which designs and builds the ads for customers.

"Patsy Stoddard, Corey Bluemel, Brandy Anderson, and Gary Arrington do an outstanding job of gathering news and photos and then putting the paper together each week," he said. "Good, relevant, timely and community oriented content is what makes a community paper great. It's a great deal of work for them and it takes a lot of hours of dedication to get it done."

When the paper won the general excellence award the last time in 2000, Kevin Ashby was the publisher.

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