Observer wins MPA award 2012.10.10

Written by David Green.

The State Line Observer earned “Newspaper of the Year” in the Michigan Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest.

The award is based on total points earned in the annual contest. The Observer has won the award for small weekly newspapers five consecutive years and 13 of the past 16 years.

Others earning the top honor were the daily newspapers Detroit Free Press, Lansing State Journal, Traverse City Record-Eagle and Livingston County Daily Press, and weekly papers News Herald (downriver Detroit), Tri-County Times (Fenton) and Leelanau Enterprise.

The Observer was awarded second place in General Excellence and first place in seven categories.

The General Excellence judge stated, “This paper isn’t far from first place at all because of its strong community news and editorial content. Nice clean layout with great use of white space and photos. Another staff of excellent writers that covers the community and packages stories with information readers need to know. An overall excellent job.”

First-place awards were given for newspaper design, lifestyle pages, a photo story about a wrestling event in Waldron, a feature story about Cork’s Winery, a sports photo of football player Cody Powell, a sports feature about coon hunting with Billy Williams, and a sports story about the Morenci-Britton Deerfield football game.

Second-place awards were presented for editorial writing, Rich Foley’s NASCAR Notes column, a sports feature about Rick Davis’s white-water rafting trip, and sports coverage.

Third-place honors were given for a news photo of a house fire on U.S. 20, a feature photo of drummers from Stair Public Library’s summer reading program, a photo package from the Town and Country Festival, a sports photo of a blocked pass, and a sports story about Taylor Baugh’s powerlifting championship.

  • Front.geese
    ON THE MOVE—Six goslings head out on manuevers with their parents in an area lake. Baby waterfowl are showing up in lakes and ponds throughout the area.
  • Front.little Ball
    Fayette's Demetrious Whiteside (left)Skylar Lester attempt to keep the ball from going out of bounds during Morenci's recent basketball tournament for fourth and fifth grade teams. Morenci's Andrew Schmidt stands by.
  • Front.tug
    MORENCI pep rallies generally end with a tug of war. The senior class entry, shown above, did not advance to the finals. Griffin Grieder, Alaina Webster, Kyle Long and Jazmin Smith are shown at the front of the rope, giving it their best effort.
  • Accident
    FAYETTE resident Patricia Stambaugh, 64, was declared dead on the scene of a single-vehicle accident Friday morning south of Morenci. Rescue units were called around 9 a.m., but as of Tuesday, law enforcement officers had not yet determined the time of the accident. According to Ohio State Highway Patrol, Stambaugh was driving west on U.S. 20 when her Chevrolet Malibu traveled off the north side of the road and down a steep embankment, coming to rest in Bean Creek (Tiffin River).
  • Athletic Fields
    SPORTS COMPLEX—Fayette’s outdoor athletic facilities will include three ball fields for summer recreation leagues at the southwest corner of the school. The baseball and softball fields, along with the running track, will be constructed on the east side of the school. Outdoor athletic fields were not part of the new school project from 2007, but voters approved a $1.4 million levy for a school addition and the sports fields last August. Both projects are scheduled to be complete by July 20.
  • Front.teacher Leading
    PRESCHOOL MUSIC—Fayette band director Jeffrey Dunford spends the last half hour of the day leading the full-day preschool class in musical activities. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.band
    TROMBONISTS Jake Myers (left) and Max Baker perform Friday at the annual Senior Citizens Luncheon at Fayette High School. The National Honor Society and the FFA chapter teamed up to serve a meal to area seniors and to provide musical entertainment. Both the school band and choir performed. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.

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