Six newspapers in the Observer Media Group garnered 61 total awards, including 24 first-place finishes, at the 2013 Florida Press Association Better Weekly Newspaper contest held July 10 to July 11, at the Biltmore in Coral Gables.
The Observer’s newspapers entered into the contest included the East County Observer, Sarasota Observer, Longboat Observer, Palm Coast Observer, Business Observer and the West Orange Times.
The Sarasota Observer won the sweepstakes cup for the most number of awards in its category of a weekly circulation of 15,000 or more. In addition, the Palm Coast Observer (15,000 or more) and the Longboat Observer (7,000 to 15,000) won first place in the general excellence category. In addition, Observer newspapers swept the category for special issue section or supplement (circulation more than 15,000) for the East County Observer’s Football Preview, the Observer’s SEASON magazine and the Observer’s Spirit of America. It also swept the category for multimedia storytelling for circulation more than 15,000.
In total, the East County Observer (circulation more than 15,000) claimed eight awards:
Informational graphic, first place – Jennifer Edwards and Pam Eubanks, “The Blackstone Buy-up”
Sports page or section, Division AB, circulation over 7,000, second place — Jen Blanco and Jess Eng
Best obituary, second place — Josh Siegel, “Cultivating a passion”
Education reporting, second place — Josh Siegel, “The ins and outs of Common Core and state standards”
Local government reporting, third place — Pam Eubanks, “How Will We Grow? Activity Centers”
Business reporting, third place — Josh Siegel, “Lasting Legacy”
Front page makeup, third place — Jennifer Edwards
Special issue, section or supplement, third place — Jen Blanco and Jennifer Edwards, “Football Preview 2013”