Spotlight News was recognized among the top weekly publications in the state at the New York Press Association spring conference in Saratoga Springs this past weekend, and the paper’s staff took home several first-place awards in the group’s annual Better Newspaper Contest.
The paper was recognized for having the best front page in its division and took home a first-place award for best editorials. Spotlight photographer Justin Cummings’ work was also selected as the best sports action photo in the paper’s division. Judges said the fact Cummings’ photo captured an entire story in an instant set it apart from the pack.
“Expressions are caught and the strength and action of the grapplers won’t be forgotten,” the judges added.
Along similar lines, judges were impressed with the entire package when it came to The Spotlight’s front page.
“Clean design with energy,” the judges wrote in their comments. “Nice use of graphics and art. Sidebar is interesting and works well with the overall design.”
The editorial category required the organization to submit three samples of editorials. Spotlight News submitted an editorial commenting on how corporate maneuvering hobbled the sale of public land in Rotterdam; a review of a mishandled open space opportunity in the Town of Ballston; and a message to graduating seniors reminding young adults it is OK to make mistakes.
“This package of editorials displays a newspaper in touch with its community. The arguments are well written and well reasoned, but most importantly go beyond the surface to tackle a community concern with a well-researched opinion,” the judges wrote.
The Spotlight’s 2012 circulation put it in a category with some of the largest papers in the NYPA group, so receiving high accolades was especially gratifying, said Spotlight Publisher John McIntyre.
“Our staff does tremendous work here at Spotlight News, and the fact we’re recognized year after year at NYPA simply reinforces that,” McIntyre said.