Local News

Sauk, Ogle County newspapers bring home 8 IPA awards

DIXON – Sauk Valley Media, which publishes the Gazette and Telegraph in Sterling and Dixon, won four awards from the Illinois Press Association for work done in 2020, including two first-place honors, while Ogle County Newspapers also won four awards, including one first-place honor.

In the small dailies division, SVM reporter Brian Weidman won first place in the business reporting category for “Gone fishing’ for good: Bunny’s Bait Shop, a Dixon institution, set to close its doors Oct. 8.”

Weidman also took fourth place in the obituary tributes category for “Sauk Valley basketball community mourns loss of referee.”

Photo editor Alex Paschal won first place in the sports portrait/personality category for “Making a Splash,” and fourth place in the general sports category for “Oh Deer.”

Ogle County News, SVM’s sister publication that publishes the Oregon Republican Reporter and three other weeklies in Polo, Mt. Morris and Forreston, took home a first place for editor Earleen Hinton and news editor Jeffery Helfrich in series news reporting for “Storm hits Forreston.”

Hinton also took a second place in the single news reporting category for “Ogle County tornado,” while Helfrich also took second, also in series news reporting, for “Jay’s Drive-In adjusts, thrives despite COVID-19 mitigations.”

Helfrich also won fourth place in business reporting for “COVID-19 impact on farms, businesses.”

All winners, including general excellence and sweepstakes, will be announced May 7 during the IPA Best of the Press Awards, which will be held during the IPA/IPF Virtual Convention May 5-7.

SVM and Ogle County Newspapers are part of Shaw Media, publishers of 53 newspapers and magazines across northern Illinois.