NPA Top Newspaper

For the third straight year, the Antelope County News earned top honors as Nebraska's best weekly newspaper.

The Nebraska Press Association announced its Better Newspaper awards Thursday afternoon. The Antelope County News won 34 awards, including the coveted Laurel Johnson Sweepstakes Award for the best weekly newspaper in Nebraska, regardless of size.

The ACN, which consists of the Orchard News, Neligh News & Leader and Clearwater Record-Ewing News, has been named the state's top newspaper for the last three years. 

It was also honored Thursday for outstanding digital coverage, including the best website and video. 

Among the other top awards the ACN received were the Freedom of Information Award, and the Community Service Award. The Freedom of Information Award recognized just one newspaper in the state, including daily publications, for its commitment to combating government secrecy and ensuring the public’s right to know. 

This marked the second straight year the ACN was honored for promoting community through its publication. The ACN was recognized for the way it covered the historic flood last year and helped the county be informed of the developing situation. 

“An incredible illustration of how weekly journalism has embraced the Internet and social media to keep readers informed. Impressive statistics on the number of online people reached. Nice mix of well-written print articles and photos and online posting. Impressive success by a very small staff," judges said. 

The Knox County News, which consists of the Bloomfield Monitor and Creighton News, was third in its category. The KCN won 18 awards.

For a full list of awards and state-leading coverage, look to next week's print edition.