Changes are few in KPA News Contest; only two daily divisions will be in place for 2021 contest

In early August, KPA will be sending out access to the 2021 Kentucky Press Association News and Advertising contests. Members will have more than two months — until Friday, October 15 — to gather their entries and submit them for the contest.

The contest period will be for all issues published between October 1, 2020, and September 30, 2021.

While several changes have been made in the Advertising Contest (see related information below), few changes are scheduled for the News Contest. KPA had a Zoom session with some of the News Editorial folks on Thursday.

There will be no changes made in any of the News contest categories, primarily because several changes were incorporated into the contest for 2020 and the members felt we need to give those changes another year in effect before determining any revisions.

However, one major change is being made in the divisions. Since COVID hit in March, 2020, some nine daily newspapers have switched to two or three publication days per week. Those newspapers — including Corbin Times Tribune, Middleboro News, Frankfort State Journal, Maysville Ledger Independent, Danville Advocate Messenger, Winchester Sun, Richmond Register and others — will now compete in the Multi-Weekly Division.

Those changes leave Kentucky with 12 daily newspapers, defined as published four or more times per week. And the news committee voted to have two Daily divisions in the 2021 contest. Daily 1 will be up to 10,000 circulation and Daily 2 will be 10,001 and above. That should put six newspapers in each division based on 2020 circulations.

And the frequency change for those newspapers means 17 newspapers will be entering as multi-weeklies. That division has typically had no more than 10 newspapers competing.

The committee made no changes in the categories and learned that Adam Yeomans, with the Associated Press, had announced the AP will again sponsor the Jon Fleischaker Freedom of Information Award. This will be the third year for that competition. And KPA will retain the Journalist of the Year award, with one each presented in the weekly, daily and Student Publications division. The first Journalists of the Year, awarded this year, were Forrest Berkshire, Kentucky Standard; Erin Cox, Corbin Times-Tribune; and Natalie Parks, Kentucky Kernel.

The 2020 contests resulted in the lowest number of entries and newspapers in more than 25 years. The Ad Contest was the lowest since 1986; the News Contest had the lowest number since 1994.

Advertising Contest undergoes category changes as well

Last week, we announced the category changes made by the KPA Ad Division. Those changes include:

…deleting for the 2021 contest “Political Advertising” since there are no scheduled elections in 2021; to combine Best Digital/Online Ad and Best Digital/Online Ad Series into one category. The Digital/Online Ad Series category had seven total entries in 2020; and combine Best Special Sections and Best Preprints/Special Publications into one category. Previously, Best Special Sections was a category only for sections inserted into the newspaper. Preprints/Special Publications was a category for catalogs and publications that were not inserted in the newspaper. It included publications such as Chamber of Commerce booklets, tourism publications and athletic event programs designed and sold by the newspaper staff but not inserted into the newspaper.

The Ad Contest will incorporate the same circulation and frequency as the News Contest, meaning two daily divisions if a sufficient number of dailies enter the 2021 contest. In 2020, only four dailies entered and all were incorporated into one division.

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