We Won! We Won!

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The Rockaway Times has done it again. For the third year in a row, we took home an award from the New York Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest. Not bad for only being in business for three years.

Last weekend, The Rockaway Times joined more than 150 other newspapers from across the state for NYPA’s 2016 BNC awards and newspaper conference in Saratoga Springs, NY.

This year, 184 newspapers submitted 2,957 entries, competing for 67 categories. The winners were presented their awards during NYPA’s Spring Convention on April 7 and 8. The entries were judged by members of the Washington Newspaper Publishers Association.

This year, The Rockaway Times took home second place for Best Overall Use of Social Media. Upon entering, we shared links to our social media pages on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, demonstrating how we share a variety of interesting posts to keep our readers engaged and provide things that don’t quite make it into the newspaper, like videos of sunsets, local bands, events, and the whale that washed up last week (which reached more than 520,000 people!). We maintain a large following across our social media platforms, including more than 11,000 followers on Facebook, more than 3,800 on Instagram and more than 1,600 on Twitter. Our accounts are maintained by Editor Katie McFadden and Publisher Kevin Boyle. In their decision, the judges said, “Uses at least the big three social media platforms to varying degrees of engagement but also includes a variety of posts to diversify content on each platform.” The Suffolk Times, Mattituck took first in the category and The Southampton Press-Eastern Edition took third. In 2015, The Rockaway Times won an award for Best Special Section with our 2nd Anniversary of Hurricane Sandy publication. Last year, Katie McFadden took home an award for feature writing. This is the third award for The Rockaway Times.

In a digital world, The Rockaway Times understands the importance of maintaining a strong social media presence, and doing it in a fun way. If you’re not following our accounts already, what are you waiting for? Follow us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/RockawayTimes/) for interesting photos, videos, links to articles and random fun. Follow us on Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/rockawaytimes/) for unique photos and videos that we take around town. We also use Twitter (https://twitter.com/rockawaytimes) on occasion, so check us out there. Perhaps other apps like Snapchat will also be used in the future. And while we’re speaking of digital platforms, make sure to sign up for The Rockaway Times by email. Every week, bright and early on Thursday morning, you’ll have the full version of the newspaper delivered to your email inbox. If you don’t already receive it, head to www.RockawayTimes.com and hit “Subscribe” to sign up. Just like the print newspaper, it’s free.

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