TORONTO – For the second consecutive year, The Wellington Advertiser has been named the top community newspaper in Ontario in its circulation class.
On April 23, the Ontario Community Newspapers Association (OCNA) virtually announced the winners of its 2020 Better Newspaper Competition (BNC).
The Advertiser won first place in the General Excellence category (circulation between 22,500 and 44,999), beating out 18 other entries, including fellow finalists Niagara This Week and Whitby This Week.
“In such a challenging year, being recognized by peers in the industry as best in class for the second year in a row is quite humbling yet gratifying,” said Advertiser publisher Dave Adsett.
“We have a talented team at the Advertiser – from our graphic artists to our conscientious reporters – I am proud of each and every one of them.”
Organized annually by the OCNA, the BNC competition recognizes the work of community newspapers throughout the province.
In their decision, three judges stated the Advertiser “makes good use of the front page as well as its general layout” and they commended the paper for its letters and opinion pieces.
“Its strong variety of local content and good use of photos also helped put this newspaper at the top of the list.”
Overall, the judges concluded, “This paper packs in a lot of community news and has a little bit of everything that would appeal to broad readership. Congratulations.”
The Advertiser also finished in the top three in the following BNC Premier Award categories:
- first place for Best Front Page for its March 19, 2020 edition featuring the bold headline “County faces COVID-19”;
- first place for Best Feature/Unit Pages for its Victory in Europe Day anniversary feature;
- second place for Best Community Newspaper Website (circulation over 10,000);
- second place for Best Special Section (circulation over 10,000) for its “Welcome to the New Groves” feature;
- second place for Best Use of Colour (Helen Michel) for a “Congratulations Class of 2020” advertisement; and
- second place for Best Local Retail Layout (Alicia Roza) for a Drayton Freshmart ad.
Adsett noted that like most businesses, the Advertiser faced incredible challenges in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“While we won awards across all categories, I want to specifically thank our news team for their commitment this past year,” he said.
“Many days stories were posted hourly to our website and the paper was put together with readers in mind.
“These are significant challenges our people met head-on.”
The BNC winners are usually announced at an annual gala in Vaughan, but that was cancelled for the second year in a row due to the pandemic.
The complete list of the 2020 winners can be found on the OCNA website.