Lagniappe’s co-publisher Ashley Trice took first place in the general column category for newspapers under 45,000 circulation in the 2015 Association of Alternative Newsmedia Awards, it was announced last Saturday.

Trice had been announced as one of three finalists in May. Her win was announced at the AAN annual conference in Salt Lake City.

Trice submitted three humorous and poignant columns, one dealing with Parties for Children on Pinterest, another about her mother and a third on getting a mammogram. She was up against columns by Terry Gibson from the Colorado Springs Independent and columns by Kevin Allman and Clancy Dubos of Gambit in New Orleans.

“I was so completely surprised and then honored and humbled to receive this award, as the other columnists and papers we were up against, like the Gambit in New Orleans, are ones I have long admired,” she said of the win.

Former Lagniappe reporter Alyson Stokes took third place for beat reporting for her police beat coverage of the Hiawayi Robinson murder. Stokes’ reporting was clear and concise, but also detailed and gave readers important information in the tragic case. She submitted four stories. They competed against Immigration Beat reporting from Boulder Weekly, Outdoor Sports reporting, also from Boulder Weekly, and Criminal Justice reporting from Indy Week, which ended up taking first place.

This was the association’s 38th annual convention and the winners were chosen as the most outstanding from a field of more than 920 entries submitted by 71 alternative publications across the U.S. and Canada. The AAN Awards recognize the best in alternative journalism and offer a chance for alt-weeklies to compete directly against the work of peers in cities across the continent. Judging was conducted by the Georgetown University Master’s in Professional Studies Program in Journalism. 

More on the awards front …
Mobile and Baldwin counties didn’t fare well when the remaining categories for the Alabama Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest were announced a few weeks ago.

A majority of the winners were announced earlier in the year, but the APA held back the big categories for its annual conference June 20 in Destin, Florida. Those categories were: 2015 General Excellence Winners, Best Public Service, FOI – First Amendment Award, Most Improved, Best Newspaper Website, Photograph of the Year, Story of the Year, Best Editorial Page or Section, Best Lifestyle/Family Pages, Best Sports Page, Best Local Economic Coverage, Best Local Education Coverage, Best Local News Coverage, Best Use of Photographs/Editorial Content, and Best Layout and Design.

The Press-Register landed a first-place award for Best Sports Page, as well as another first for Best Local News Coverage, and a second-place award for Best Use of Photographs/Editorial Content. Other than those three awards, though, no other awards were won by newspapers in Mobile or Baldwin counties.

Lagniappe does not compete in the APA contest because the association does not allow full membership for newspapers that do not have a publications-class mailing permit from the U.S. Postal Service.

General Excellence winners for Divisions A-E were, in order, The Birmingham News, The Opelika-Auburn News, Shelby County Reporter, The Southeast Sun (Enterprise) and The Madison Record.

The Montgomery Advertiser won in Divison A for Most Improved, as well as coming in first for Best Newspaper Website. Oddly for The Birmingham News ranked second, but no other division placed.

“Slocomb Fire” by Jay Hare of The Dothan Eagle was recognized as Photograph of the Year for all categories, and The Birmingham News’ Carol Robinson won for Story of the Year for “Tragedy at UPS.”

The Birmingham News, Press-Register and Huntsville Times still compete in the association’s contest as daily newspapers despite only printing three times a week.

Home delivery coming
Beginning in August, Lagniappe will offer home delivery on Fridays. We don’t really know what the market is for paid delivery of a free newspaper, but so many people have expressed a desire to have Lagniappe delivered to their homes, we figured we’ll give it a try.

Costs will be $117 for 52 weeks, $59 for 26 weeks and $30 for 13 weeks. Anyone interested should email Mary Burts at Please leave contact information, address and ZIP code. Burts can be called at 251-450-4466 as well.