Welcome to this week’s Reno News & Review.

Last week, the Nevada Press Association announced the winners of the annual Better Newspaper Contest, recognizing the best journalism in the state, and I’m delighted to say that the RN&R kicked butt this year.

In our category, “urban weekly newspapers,” we won the “General Excellence” award. The runners up were all Clark County papers. When the University of Nevada, Reno football team beats the University of Nevada, Las Vegas team, they get a cannon. It seems like we should get … a pencil sharpener, maybe? A typewriter? A fedora with a press tag?

Associate editor Jeri Chadwell, won first places in Best Business Feature for “On the rails,” and Best Investigative Story for “What the doctor ordered?” News editor Dennis Myers took down a silver medal in the coveted “Best Editorial Writing” category.

Erstwhile RN&R arts editor Kris Vagner won first prize for Best Feature Writing for her story “School spirit,” and second place for Best Entertainment Writing and Best Critical Writing. She teaches journalism at UNR now—the instructor you want, kids.

Our freelance contributors did well, too. We swept the Best Local Non-staff Column category: 1. Sheila Leslie, 2. Bruce Van Dyke and 3. Brendan Trainor. Dennis McBride’s “Stripped rights” won second prize for Best Feature Writing. And our theater critic, Jessica Santina, won first prize for Best Critical Writing.

Our amazing design team won Best Page One Design. And our advertising team, not to be outdone, really cleaned up: First place prizes for Best Ad Series, Best Special Section or Campaign, and Advertising General Excellence. Plus a second place prize for Best Advertising Innovation.

As for me? Just a couple of bronzes for Best Entertainment Writing and Best Local Column. It’s great to be the weak link in such a fantastic team.

Congrats, folks!

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