The results are in, and The Taber Times has been recognized by the Alberta Weekly Newspaper Association in various categories for 2017.
At the AWNA annual general meeting in Edmonton earlier this month, the biggest feather in the cap was winning the Genome Alberta Best Agricultural Supplement. The previous year, The Taber Times took third in the category.
“We had editorial and advertising contributing to the project from every single weekly in our southern Alberta newspaper chain. I’ve asked around to people who know the background of The Taber Times, and it was literally the largest supplement coming out of The Times office in its history. If we didn’t win top prize, I was going to be surprised,” said Greg Price with a chuckle, editor of The Taber Times and Vauxhall Advance. “If ever the cliché of a team effort was warranted, this was it. From all the different newspapers, advertisers and interview sources that contributed to us celebrating 100 years of 4-H in Alberta, it is the very definition of a community award that Taber and the M.D. should be proud of.”
Another high-end special supplement that earned a top placing was the Metro Creative Graphics Best Special Sections and Supplements Award which The Times took third in for its section on Celebrating Canada’s 150th birthday. The St. Albert Gazette and Ponoka News took first and second respectively.
For the Sue Gawlak Best Local Editorial, the joint submission by Trevor Busch and Greg Price of ‘Elections let democracy start anew’ took third behind submissions from the St. Albert Gazette (Detailed dysfunction) and Town and Country News (Apparently, you’re not reading this).
“As I was writing the editorial, we were picking each other’s brains on incidents we interpreted were quite liberal uses of the Municipal Government Act and FOIPP (Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy) Act by various councils and boards we have covered, and it really was not that hard for Trevor and I to come up with examples to make a plea to all the new councils coming in October for increased transparency to the public,” said Price.
For the General Excellence Categories, the Taber Times was first for Best Sports Page and third for Best Editorial Page.
“Journalism does not work without community buy in and Taber has been fantastic when it comes to sports. Whether it’s community journalism where proud parents and coaches submit pictures or write ups, or very accessible coaches and schedules for photography and written stories, it makes sports coverage that much easier,” said Price. “We at the Times try and cover as wide of a variety of sports as we can with our limited resources, and the community has been a Godsend in sending us tips on more obscure sports in southern Alberta.”
The Times has not concentrated on submitting for individual awards until the last few years, opting more for the overall awards of general excellence as a whole. The Times’ first foray into submitting for awards for advertising has netted positive results thanks to the efforts of Chris Mykytiw, Erin Lickiss and Meg Noguchi. Taber Times earned second place for Creative Use of Colour in Advertising (Horizon Implements-V-Cool System) and a third place finish for Excellence in Advertising (4-H…100 Years).
“All of the individual awards are open to any circulation category, meaning over 100 weekly newspapers in the province are eligible. To finish in the top tier among your peers is a big honour,” said Price. “It shows we have staff, advertisers and a community that is proud of quality small-town journalism whose amount of original content rivals any weekly newspaper you would find across Canada with our staffing and resource levels. That’s not too shabby a product you can get for less than a cup of coffee to keep yourself informed of what’s going on in your community.”