This newspaper competes in Division 5 with other semiweeklies of similar size in the Better Newspaper Contest. This year 159 newspapers submitted 1,566 entries in the contest competing in 10 divisions.
Awards were presented during a convention Saturday in Corpus Christi. The contest was judged by the New Mexico Press Association as part of the annual Better Newspaper Contest swap.
In the headline writing category, the judges awarded this newspaper a second place for the headlines “Cyber harlot,” “Holly jolly XXXmas” and “Moses parts for new waters.”
One judge wrote of the work of Editor Jason Collins, “Impactful headlines that definitely accomplish the goal of catching the reader’s eye. Good use of humor.
“Thank you particularly for ‘Holly, jolly XXXmas.’ Nice work.”
The newspaper also won a second place in the community service category.
Reporters here tackled the issue of flying the Confederate flag and just whether it should be allowed to be flown on county property by citizens during public events.
Co-publisher Jeff Latcham voiced his thoughts in an editorial. Readers weighed in with letters to the editor, and videographer Paul Gonzales was at Western Week talking to some of those at that event to get their opinions.
“Newspapers and the First Amendment go hand in hand,” a judge wrote of his decision. “This is a contentious subject, handled well. Clearly the community was engaged.”
Another second place was awarded for page design. This category included work by the entire staff at the newspaper as judging occurred across multiple sections of the newspaper.
Comments from the judges were simple. “Nice use of graphics.”
The judges also awarded the newspaper a third place in the editorial writing category.
The two entries were written by Jeff Latcham and dealt with not only the Confederate flag but also some ill-conceived ideas perpetuated by members of the Tea Party at that time.
On a lighter note, reporter Bill Clough received a third place for his work.
His two stories—one of Artie’s closing and another of a former Russian now living and teaching in Beeville—received praise from the judges.
While the judges said they enjoyed the story of the restaurant, it was the story of Tatiana Authement, a teacher at Thomas Jefferson Intermediate School, that captivated them.
“The Russian story, though, had me held,” the judge wrote.
The Bee-Pic wasn’t the only newspaper in the Beeville Publishing group win awards.
The Karnes Countywide won a third place in page design and a fourth in news writing.
The Goliad Advance-Guard won a third place in the feature photo category.