Houlton Pioneer Times wins accolades at annual newspaper gathering

13 years ago

NORTHPORT, Maine — The Houlton Pioneer Times staff won a total of nine awards in the 2010 Maine Press Association Better Newspaper Contest.
The presentations were made Oct. 17 during the state newspaper organization’s annual meeting and workshop at the Point Lookout conference center.
    Taking first place in the Newspapers in Education category for large weeklies, was the Pioneer Times’ annual NIE section featuring student writing and photography, as well as student-created advertising. Meg Heckman, editor of The Concord Monitor, who judged the category, commented on the Houlton paper’s special classroom-created edition. “The photos! The artwork! The stories! The ads! Students took over your local section for the day and it works great,” she said.
Reporter Joseph Cyr won three second-place awards including News Headline, Business/Economics and Education reporting. Karen Harrigan, editor/publisher of The News and Sentinel in Colebrook, N.H, judged the writing categories. She called Cyr’s “MOOMilk offers organic farmers hope” story “well-written and informative with a really good flow to it. Writer did a good job of weaving the farmers’ comments into the bigger picture, and depicting the relationship between big business and small.” The judges also cited Cyr’s headline for the organic milk story.
A story on SAD 29 and 70 test results also earned Cyr honors in the Education category. The judges wrote “the story does a good job of explaining the effect of testing on two local schools. A well-balanced article that lays out all sides of a complicated issue and draws perspective from all parties involved.”
Sports editor Gloria Austin’s image of a youth football game received third-place honors in the Sports Photo photography category. Peter Ackerman, chief photographer for the Asbury Park Press of Neptune, N.J., who judged the category, said Austin’s photo “captured the timely moment of a face mask penalty.”
In the News Story category, Pioneer Times reporter Elna Seabrooks earned third place for her story entitled, “Faith faces fire in Smyrna.” Judge Clynton Namuo of the Union Leader of Manchester, N.H. said Seabrooks report was “an excellent fire story.”
Pioneer sales associate Dave Bates won two third-place awards in the contest; one for a Houlton Farms Dairy ad and the other for the “Shop at Home” campaign. Lewiston (Pa.) Sentinel Advertising Director, Matt Bolich called the Houlton Farms Dairy ad “good usage of the little girl and ‘good to the last’ tagline.” The shop local series “with numbered reasons to ‘shop at home’ is a powerful way to get the message across,” the judge wrote.
The Ellsworth American was selected as the best weekly newspaper in Maine while the Bangor Daily News won the best daily newspaper title.