ALEXANDRIA — The Echo Press had another successful year in the Minnesota Newspaper Association’s Better Newspaper competition, winning 17 awards in multiple categories — overall excellence, reporting, advertising, editorial page, sports, headline writing, photography and more.

The awards were announced Thursday, Jan. 27, at the MNA’s 155th Annual Convention in Brooklyn Park.

Winners of MNA’s Better Newspaper Contest are determined by judges from award-winning newspapers in other states.

Here are the awards received by Echo Press:

general excellence, second place. Judge comments: “This intensely local newspaper connects readers to the people, issues and current events in their community. It is useful and relevant in a way that would keep readers coming back.

The Echo Press received a second award for overall excellence, which encompasses all of the newspaper’s content, including news, commercials, sports, life and more.

General report, first place. Judge’s Comments: “Loved the variety of stories in this post and the content of those stories. From hunting soldiers, to COVID, to several other topics, I found myself reading almost every story on every page. Great job with a variety of interesting topics in each issue! Something for everyone in this journal.

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The Echo Press received first prize in the General Reporting category.

advertising excellence, first place. Judge’s comments: excellent article! Beautiful ads, good use of color, clean layout, excellent ad support and a solid classifieds section. »

Editorial page as a whole, second place. Judge’s comments: “I really like the local vibe of this page with local columnists, editorials and letters.”

writing titles, second place. Judge’s Comments: “Lots of jingle” – I love this title for so many reasons, but it would have been so easy to have a cliched Christmas reference here, and you skipped it. I like the “lots of jingle” which refers to both the change/money and the event. Very clever without overdoing it. ‘Soaking up the festival fun’ is the perfect title for this fun shot; “In 2020, anything can happen” with snow in the record books, isn’t that the truth? Great job – it’s clear you’re having fun writing them when appropriate, but still able to strike a balanced tone.

Institutional Advertising, first place for an advertisement featuring the Alexandria Golf Club created by Scott Teaser and Katie Hastings. Judge’s comments: “Clean and attractive presentation. The juxtaposition of golf balls with Christmas decorations is subtle but quite creative.


This Echo Press ad won first place for institutional advertising in the Minnesota Newspaper Association contest.

photography feature photo, second place for Lowell Anderson’s photo, “In like a lamb”. Judge’s Comments: “Love the low perspective pulling on the kids and the tangle of strings. A technically difficult shot given the backlight.

Typography and design, second place. Judge’s comments: “Well designed and well organized. Excellent use of photos, with varying sizes and subjects. Labels, mug journals, folios, and fact boxes look sharp. The November 20 nameplate photo fade was the most effective of your three submissions in terms of readability.

Self-promotion or internal announcement, first place for the friendliest baby contest ad created by Kate Henderson and Brenda Lawrence. Judge’s comments: “Nice use of color without overdoing it. Good composition. »


Echo Press’ ad for the friendliest baby contest received first prize for best self-promotion or internal ad.

Self-promotion or internal announcement, third place for “Light up the Night” contest ad created by Michelle Weller and the creative team at Echo Press. Judge’s Comments: Using the name tag and ribbon instead of an overused starburst sold me on that.

sports reports, third place. Judge’s comments: “Clear, concise writing and a holistic approach to the sport make the staff approach a success.”

human interest story, third place for the story, “Get Your Life Back”, written by Celeste Edenloff. The judge comments: “A daughter’s love for her father shines through in this public interest article about a liver transplant. The writing is strong and really tells the story.

sports report, third place for the story, “Commitment to Tennis Teaching Takes a Break,” by Jared Rubado. Judge’s Comments: “Strong writing allows the reader to appreciate the tennis coach’s (Dave Ronning) passion for his sport.

Advertising campaign, third place for an Alexandria Bike Shop advertising campaign created by Jen Vraa and the creative team at Echo Press. Judge’s comments: “Very clean ad campaign with call to action.”

Best Publicity, third place for an advertisement for Anderson Florist created by Shelly Beaulieu and Mollie Burlingame. Judge’s Comments: “Loved the use of colors and photos.”

classifieds section, third place. Judge’s comments: “Clean, well organized.”

Use of photography as a whole, third place. Judge’s Comments: “Great photography that showcases the stories. The number of photos to be edited is very high.

The Pine Knot News won the Mills Trophy, which is awarded to the weekly newspaper that garners the most points in the competition, while the Rochester Post Bulletin received the Vance Trophy, awarded to the top newspapers.