The Whidbey Examiner won second place for General Excellence in its circulation group in the 2016 Better Newspaper Contest.
The contest, put on by the Washington Newspaper Publisher’s Association, held its annual awards last week in Wenatchee.
In addition to the general excellence honor, the staff earned first place for its annual Farm Tour special section and a handful of individual awards.
Reporter Ron Newberry earned four awards, including two first place awards, one in the News of the Weird category for his story about a meter error that led to more than a $100,000 utility bill for the Coupeville School District.
Newberry also took home awards for two news stories, “History reduced to rubble” and “One last trip through the prairie.”
The former was about the removal of a historic ferry landing near the Keystone spit and the latter about the tractor procession that preceded a graveside service for Coupeville farmer Bob Engle.
Newberry also won third place for a business feature, “Whidbey’s ‘No. 2’ attraction,” based on an outhouse business venture at the Pacific Rim Institute of Environmental Stewardship.
Reporter Kate Daniel took home a second-place award for best feature story for her story, “Garage Sale unearths mementos,” which highlighted the Coupeville’s Lions Club’s efforts to return a personal keepsake donated to the annual garage sale.
Editor Megan Hansen took home four first-place awards in front-page design and various news categories.
Those awards include first place for best long news story for “New festival rules upset shop owners,” related to the Coupeville Arts &Crafts Festival.
She also earned a third place award for her comprehensive coverage of the Port of Coupeville taking over management of Greenbank Farm.