Beacon Named Best Online Newspaper

Flathead Living magazine takes top honor; Beacon reporters awarded for best political and education coverage

By Beacon Staff
The Niarada Fire burns through timber and prairie west of Elmo and north of Highway 28 on July 30, 2023. Hunter D’Antuono | Flathead Beacon

The Flathead Beacon was named the best online newspaper in the state at the Montana Newspaper Association’s (MNA) Better Newspaper Contest. The awards were handed out Saturday night at the association’s 139th annual convention, which was held at the Red Lion Inn in Kalispell. This is the first year the Beacon entered the contest since discontinuing its weekly print edition more than a year ago. It was also the first year the MNA recognized online-only newspapers in their own separate category.

In total, the Beacon took home 12 awards and eight first-place plaques, including for political coverage, education coverage, photography and ad design. The Beacon’s flagship print publication, Flathead Living magazine, was also named the best niche publication in the state for the seventh time.

The Choteau Acantha won the Thomas Dimsdale Award for the best weekly newspaper in the state. The Daily Inter Lake won the Sam Gilluly Award for best daily newspaper in Montana.

First Place Awards

Best Online Newspaper – Flathead Beacon

Best Niche Publication – Beacon Staff, Flathead Living magazine

Best Political Coverage – Tristan Scott, “How Lincoln County’s ‘Big Lie’ Upended an Election Department”

Best Education Coverage – Denali Sagner “Who’s Going to Teach My Kid?”

Best Breaking News Photo – Hunter D’Antuono, “Niarada Fire”

Best Sports Photo – Hunter D’Antuono, “Thistle Nationals”

Best Online Ad – Dwayne Harris

Best Digital Presentation – Micah Drew, “Best of Preps – Fall 2023”

Thistle Class Association National Championship sail boat race on Flathead Lake in Somers on July 21, 2023. Hunter D’Antuono | Flathead Beacon

Second Place Awards

Best Ad to Sell or Promote Merchandise Color – Dwayne Harris

Third Place Awards

Best Column Writing – Kellyn Brown

Best Sports and Outdoors Column Writing – Micah Drew

Best Website – flatheadbeacon.com