February 20, 2003
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‘News’ wins six awards in newspaper contest

The Yellow Springs News won six awards, including one first-place award and four second-place awards, in the Hooper Newspaper Show, the biggest contest for Ohio weekly newspapers.

The awards were announced last Thursday, Feb. 13, at the annual Ohio Newspaper Association’s annual convention in Columbus. The association’s Weekly Newspaper Committee sponsored the contest.

Thirty-three newspapers participated in the contest, which included papers published between Aug. 1, 2001, and July 31, 2002. The participating papers were divided into three equal divisions based on total paid circulation.

Three awards were given in most of the contest’s 13 categories, though honorable mention prizes were awarded in several categories. Most of the judges in the contest are journalism professors at Ohio colleges or universities.

Competing in the division for weeklies with less than 2,242 paid circulation, the News placed first in one category, second in four and third in one.

For the second year in a row, the News won first place in the “Advertising” category. The judge said that the News had a “great variety and creativity in layouts” and showed a “good use of borders and fonts.”

The News received second-place honors for “Editorials,” “Local Features” and “Photography.” Bill Felker also won a second-place award for his column, “A Yellow Springs Almanack.”

In the “Editorials” category, the judge highlighted News editor Robert Mihalek’s editorial urging Village Council to put the Glass Farm affordable-housing plan to a public vote. The judge called Mihalek’s editorial supporting the Yellow Springs school district’s income tax issue “a well-thought-out piece with facts and figures to support his opinion that the schools deserve support.” This is the third year in a row that the News has won an award in the “Editorials” category.

The judge in the “Local Features” category singled out News reporter Diane Chiddister’s story marking the two-month anniversary of the disappearance of YSHS senior Tim Lopez, calling the story the best of the five articles that the News submitted for the category. This is the third year in a row the News has won an award for “Features.”

Felker, who has written “A Yellow Springs Almanack” for 19 years, was honored for his “inspiring descriptions of nature” by the judge in the “Original Columns” category. This is the fourth award Felker has received in the Hooper Show.

In addition, the News won third place overall in the “Original Art & Graphic” category. The judges said the News’s graphics are “very clear and easy to interpret and display a nice use of type.”