Bridger Valley Pioneer earned two awards at WPA convention

LYMAN — The Bridger Valley Pioneer was again recognized for its quality at this year’s Wyoming Press Association (WP) convention last weekend with a major award and a Pacemaker Award.

WPA holds an annual convention bringing all of the papers across the state to promote the industry and to present awards to paper for their work for the preceding year. This year’s convention was held at the Ramkota Hotel in Casper Jan. 18-20.

The Bridger Valley Pioneer is judged in the small weekly category, which includes 26 of the papers, or most of the papers in Wyoming, with the Pioneer going head-to-head with papers like the Uinta County Herald, Riverton Ranger, Rock Springs Rocket Miner, Lovell Chronicle, Star Valley Independent and more. There is also a category for large weeklies and for dailies. The contest was judged by the Illinois Press Association.

In the Major Awards category, the Pioneer took first place in In-Depth Reporting with the story “Going green generates tons of garbage,” by Virginia Giorgis. The Judge said, “I really liked how different this topic was and something that I genuinely didn't know and wanted to learn more about. Great writing, well done.”

The story related how wind turbines are almost indestructible and how they are buried in Uinta County, Casper and across the nation.

This is an excerpt from the story, “The road to green energy is not as good for the earth as projectionists predict according to a new study, specifically forecasting wind turbine blades are projected to generate tons of garbage,

“On the local level, Uinta County has been digging trenches and burying the blades for a long time as the blades are almost impossible to recycle. Uinta County even bought a new heavy-duty, heavy compressor to use at the landfill, and all it did was ride up and over the wind turbine blade.

“The information on burying the blades was reported several years ago by Uinta County. This trend not only affects Uinta, but other counties across the state have reported they are also burying the blades. Natrona County reported it was cutting the blades into 20-foot lengths and then burying the cut blades.

“In 2019, the Casper Landfill accepted about 1,500 wind turbine blades for disposal. The photos of bulldozers pushing dirt over the chopped up blades were shared widely on social media.

The award the Pioneer received for In-Depth Reporting and the Advertising Excellence Award is the type of awards the WPA handed out across the state for photography, writing, layout and more.

In the Pacemaker awards, papers are recognized for their excellence in editorial, photography and advertising. Only a first and second place are awarded in each division based on the size of the paper in this major awards category. The Bridger Valley Pioneer took the second prize in the small weekly division. This is due to the work of Pioneer ad designer Sue Bruynes. The Pioneer also received this second place award last year.


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