The Moody County Enterprise won the Sweepstakes Award in the South Dakota Better Newspaper Contest.
Results, released last week, were from work in 2020 and were based on the most points earned for awards won in categories within the circulation divisions. The annual contest is sponsored by the South Dakota Newspaper Association.
The Enterprise, which is in the weeklies 901 to 1,300 circulation category, was one of five papers in the state to earn the award, based on the newspaper’s size. The other newspapers were the Hamlin County Republican, weeklies under 900; Freeman Courier, weeklies over 1,300; Yankton Press & Dakotan, dailies under 7,000, and the Argus Leader, dailies over 7,000.
In individual awards categories, Brenda Wade Schmidt won first-place honors for Best Spot News Story (the blaze at T&R Electric in Colman), Best Local Column (for a series of entries) Best Feature Story (for a profile on Lisa Casper who has lived 30 years with a heart transplant) and Best News Series (for stories that reported how schools, parents and students dealt with COVID-19).
“Hands down, the best collection of stories in the contest,” judges, who were from Maine, said of the news series award. “They were interesting and informative and gave a glimpse into how COVID impacted the community and its students. Nice work.”
Wade Schmidt also won a second-place award for Best News Photo (an arrest), and she won third-place awards for Best Photo Series (the architecture of the Moody County courtroom) and Best Local Government Story (a proposal for junior kindergarten).