UpCountry earns top honors

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UpCountry Magazine won 2019 Newspaper of the Year in the specialty publications category in the New England Newspaper & Press Association's annual competition.

The award was announced Thursday at the New England Newspaper Awards Luncheon held at the AC Hotel Marriott in Worcester.

For UpCountry, its win in the specialty publication category is its second in its three years of existence. It took the top honor in the division in 2017 and was named a Distinguished Newspaper of the Year, a runner-up to the top honor, in 2018.

Unlike other newspaper competitions nationally, this one is judged by a jury of newspaper readers from New England, according to The New England Newspaper and Press Association. Jurors evaluate the quality of reporting and writing, use of photos, design and presentation, digital offering, and overall utility and value. They also consider whether the newspapers inform, educate, entertain, inspire, motivate, lead and whether they reflect and care about the community they serve.

"It is heartening to be recognized by our peers for the great work our reporters, designers and editors do day in and day out. It is even more terrific to see UpCountry awarded for excellence three years in a row — taking the top award twice. While I dare not choose favorites among our publications, UpCountry has a special place in my heart, as it was created on our watch," said Fredric D. Rutberg, the publisher, president and co-owner of New England Newspapers Inc., which operates The Reformer and UpCountry.

Launched in January 2017, UpCountry is the glossy, bimonthly magazine produced by The Reformer and its sister publications in New England Newspapers Inc. Runners-up in the 2019 competition included the Business News of Providence, R.I., and Mainebiz of Portland, Maine.

The New England Newspaper & Press Association is the professional trade organization for newspapers in New England and represents more than 450 daily, weekly and specialty newspapers.

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