Beacon Named Top Weekly Newspaper in the State

By Beacon Staff

For the third year in a row, the Flathead Beacon won top honors among the state’s large weekly and small daily newspapers in the Montana Newspaper Association’s Better Newspaper Contest. The awards were handed out Saturday night at the association’s annual banquet in Lewistown.

The Beacon took home 39 awards and 17 first-place plaques, including the Division III Weeklies/Division I Dailies Sweepstakes Award and Thomas Dimsdale Sweepstakes Award, which recognizes the best newspaper in every division except large dailies and is based on total points accumulated for placing in the various categories of the contest. The Beacon was also honored for General Excellence, in which one judge noted, “this is clearly the best newspaper, not only in this category, but also in the state.”

Notable individual honors went to Dan Testa, who won the Public Service Journalism Award for his coverage of Nazi sympathizers in the area, and Myers Reece, who won the Mark Henckel Award for his outdoor reporting. The advertising staff at the Beacon also won a number of awards, including second place for General Advertising Excellence.

The Billings Gazette received the Sam Gilluly Sweepstakes Award recognizing the top daily newspaper in Montana.

The following is a roundup of categories in which the Beacon placed:


Thomas Dimsdale Sweepstakes Award: Flathead Beacon

Sweepstakes Award (Weeklies Division III/Dailies Division I): Flathead Beacon

General Excellence

Best Front Page

Best Editorial Page

Best Sports Page

Best Outdoors Page

Public Service Journalism: Dan Testa

Mark Henckel Outdoors Award (Best Outdoors Reporting): Myers Reece

Best Feature Story, General: Myers Reece

Best Business and Economic Reporting: Myers Reece

Best Environmental/Natural Resources Reporting: Dan Testa

Best Graphic: Stephen Templeton

Best Cartoon: Stephen Templeton Flathead Beacon

Best Nature Photo: Lido Vizzutti

Best Color Ad: Steve Larson and Bob Hunt

Best Advertising Series: Steve Larson and Kelly Siblerud


General Advertising Excellence

Special Projects: “Escape”

Best Web Project

Best Local Column: Kellyn Brown

Best Business and Economic Reporting: Dan Testa

Best Government Reporting: Dan Testa

Best Health, Fitness, Medicine, Science Reporting: Dan Testa

Best Feature Photo: Lido Vizzutti

Best Sports Photo: Lido Vizzutti

Best Color Ad: Steve Larson and Bob Hunt

Best Single House Ad: Steve Larson and Bob Hunt

Best Advertising Headline: Steve Larson and Kelly Siblerud


Best Headline Writing: Kellyn Brown

Best Feature Story, Personality: Dan Testa

Best Justice System Reporting: Molly Priddy

Best Sports Story: Myers Reece

Best Graphic: Stephen Templeton

Best Photo Essay: Lido Vizzutti

Best Small Space Ad: Steve Larson and Bob Hunt

General Writing Excellence: Myers Reece


Best Sports Column: Mick Holien

General Writing Excellence: Dan Testa

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