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Over $11,000 awarded to winners of 2019 OWAA Excellence in Craft Contests

Outdoor Writers Association of America awarded over $11,000 in prize money for work created in 2018. First, second and third place winners in 10 contests received prize money, plaques and certificates on June 23 at OWAA’s 92nd annual conference in Little Rock, Arkansas.

OWAA thanks the 2019 contest sponsors – Izaak Walton League of America, The Pew Charitable Trusts and Realtree – for their continued support of this prestigious contest program.

2019 winners are as follows:

Television/Video/Webcast Contest

Conservation or Nature Category
Sponsored by The Pew Charitable Trusts

  • First place: David Majure, “Arizona Elk West Virginia Bound,” Arizona Game & Fish Department
  • Second place: Ross Purnell, “One Path: The Race to Save Mongolia’s Giant Salmonids,” Outdoor Channel
  • Third place: Eric Parker Andersen, “Life’s a Beach,” KARE-11 NBC

Family Participation/Youth Outdoor Education Category
Sponsored by Realtree

  • First place: Grant McOmie, “Astoria Crabbing,” KGW News
  • Second place: Bill Sherck, “Katelin’s Day,” KARE-11 NBC
  • Third place: Dan Small, “USSA Kids Fishing Outing,” Milwaukee PBS

Fishing Category

  • First place: Ross Purnell, “One Path: The Race to Save Mongolia’s Giant Salmonids,” Outdoor Channel
  • Second place: Jeff Kelm, “Ice Fishing with the Hmong Community,” Milwaukee PBS
  • Third place: Trey Reid, “Fall Fishing on the Little Missouri River,” KARK-TV/KARZ-TV

Gear/Technical Category

  • First place: Bill Sherck, “Hunting the Alley,” KARE 11 NBC
  • Second place: David Majure, “How to Fly Fish a Lake,” Arizona Game & Fish Department
  • Third place: Eric Parker Andersen, “Made for the Outdoors – Aplacka Rafts,” Fox Sports North

Hunting or Shooting Sports Category

  • First place: Karen Loke, “In Memory of Jacob,” Texas Parks & Wildlife PBS
  • Second place: Trey Reid, “Rabbit Hunting with Beagles: Passing on an Arkansas Tradition,” KARK-TV/KARZ-TV
  • Third place: Mark LaBarbera and Dan Small, “Deer Hunt Wisconsin 2018,” Fox Sports Wisconsin and Fox Sports North

Outdoor Fun and Adventure Category
Sponsored by Izaak Walton League of America

  • First place: Kyle Heidenreich, “Stoney Point Surfers,” KARE-11 NBC
  • Second place: Eric Parker Andersen, “Destination Polaris – Silverton Colorado,” Fox Sports North
  • Third place: Trey Reid, “Wild and Scenic Mulberry River,” KARK-TV/KARZ-TV

Radio/Podcast Contest

Conservation or Nature Category
Sponsored by The Pew Charitable Trusts

  • First place: Monica Gokey, “Cattle Among Us,” Outlandish podcast
  • Second place: Ty Stockton, “Keep it public,” Cowboy State News Network
  • Third place: Brian Jennings, “Footprints in the Wilderness,” 1110 KBNB Bend

Family Participation/Youth Outdoor Education Category
Sponsored by Realtree

  • First place: Monica Gokey, “Fractured Self: What happens when parenthood threatens to erase your identity?,” Out There podcast
  • Second place: Ty Stockton, “Get those kids outside,” Cowboy State News Network
  • Third place: Ty Stockton, “A backpack shouldn’t be bigger than the backpacker,” Cowboy State News Network

Fishing Category

  • First place: Ty Stockton, “Don’t just sit there, go fishing,” Cowboy State News Network
  • Second place: John Kruse, “Kyle Jones and Idaho’s Clearwater River Steelhead,” Northwestern Outdoors Radio Network
  • Third place: Ty Stockton, “I am no fly-fishing purist,” Cowboy State News Network

Gear/Technical Category

  • First place: Ty Stockton, “Stay warm with plenty of layers,” Cowboy State News Network
  • Second place: Jeff Kelm, “Ion Lithium Batteries,” Outdoors Radio Network/WRJC
  • Third place: Ty Stockton, “GoPro on a dog is a great idea — but not on MY dog,” Cowboy State News Network

Hunting or Shooting Sports Category

  • First place: Brian Jennings, “Ladies Hunting Camp,” 1110 KBNB Bend
  • Second place: John Kruse, “A hunt aboard the Duck Taxi with Shelby Ross,” Northwestern Outdoors Radio Network
  • Third place: Dan Small, “Reflections on a Season Not Hunted,” Outdoors Radio Network/WRJC

Outdoor Fun and Adventure Category
Sponsored by Izaak Walton League of America

  • First place: Ty Stockton, “Boat rentals have completely changed my outdoor strategy,” Cowboy State News Network
  • Second place: John Kruse, “Hiking with Llamas,” America Outdoors Radio Network
  • Third place: Ty Stockton, “Take a hike,” Cowboy State News Network

Magazine/E-zine Contest

Conservation or Nature Category
Sponsored by The Pew Charitable Trusts

  • First place: Amy Grisak, “Bulls of Banff,” Bugle
  • Second place: Pat Wray, “A Rose by Any Other Name,” Game and Fish Publications
  • Third place: Karuna Eberl, “The Tiny Florida Butterfly That Refuses to Become Extinct,” Atlas Obscura

Family Participation/Youth Outdoor Education Category
Sponsored by Realtree

  • First place: Kris Millgate, “A Legit Way to Fish,” Hatch
  • Second place: Christine Peterson, “A Place in the Hunt,” Bugle
  • Third place: Lisa Ballard, “Fishing Bonds,” Colorado Outdoors

Fishing Category

  • First place: David Zoby, “Eggs in Your Beer,” The Drake
  • Second place: Andrew Pegman, “A Tale of Two Trips,” American Angler
  • Third place: Noah Davis, “Culling,” The Drake

Gear/Technical Category

  • First place: Amy Grisak, “Homemade Trail Meals,” The New Pioneer
  • Second place: Mike Zlotnicki, “Taking Stock of Shotgun Fitting,” Wildlife in North Carolina
  • Third place: James Smedley, “Paddling and angling,” Lake Superior Angler

Humor Category

  • First place: Jon Tobey, “Troutaholics Anonymous,” The Flyfish Journal
  • Second place: Pat Wray, “Duff and the Barbed-Wire Fence,” Game and Fish Publications
  • Third place: Pat Wray, “How to Ruin a Good Bird Dog,” Game and Fish Publications

Hunting or Shooting Sports Category

  • First place: Michael Furtman, “Blasts from the Past,” Ducks Unlimited
  • Second place: Ken Blomberg, “The Island,” Ruffed Grouse Society magazine
  • Third place: Johnny Sain, “Blood Brother,” Hatch

Outdoor Fun and Adventure Category
Sponsored by Izaak Walton League of America

  • First place: Chris Madson, “Zen in the Art of Wingshooting,” Pheasants Forever
  • Second place: Mark Aiken, “Skiing By Headlamp,” Vermont Magazine
  • Third place: Russell Roe, “Survival of the Fittest,” Texas Parks & Wildlife

Newspaper/News Website Contest

Conservation or Nature Category
Sponsored by The Pew Charitable Trusts

  • First place: Paul Smith, “Peregrine falcon recovery is Racine native’s life work,” Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
  • Second place: Paul Smith, “Chimney swifts are in a marked decline,” Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
  • Third place: Mark Freeman, “Franklin’s still missing,” Medford Mail Tribune

Family Participation/Youth Outdoor Education Category
Sponsored by Realtree

  • First place: Joseph Dits, “How Dad’s camping trips changed our lives,” South Bend Tribune
  • Second place: Glenn Sapir, “Welcoming in a Young Angler,” New York Outdoor News
  • Third place: Emily Stone, “Making Tracks,” Bayfield County Journal

Fishing Category

  • First place: Ben Moyer, “Cutthroat Adventure: Packhorse and saddle reach remote fishing,” Uniontown Herald-Standard
  • Second place: Christine Peterson, “Biologists say too many small lake trout are hurting Flaming Gorge trophy fish,” Casper Star-Tribune
  • Third place: Terry Brady, “Surfside: Introducing the old to new ways,” Pennsylvania Outdoors News

Gear/Technical Category

  • First place: Mark Neuzil, “The Surprisingly Interesting History of the Bent- Shaft Paddle,” GearJunkie.com
  • Second place: Pat Wray, “Knives are a Great Christmas Gift,” Corvallis Gazette-Times
  • Third place: Christine Peterson, “The right shot: How to decide what shot to use on your next bird hunting adventure, and why,” Casper Star-Tribune

Humor Category

  • First place: Steven Griffin, “Forgotten corner of spirit freed by free sail boat,” Midland Daily News
  • Second place: Matthew Liere, “Remembering the great Pat McManus,” The Spokesman-Review
  • Third place: Pat Wray, “Fishing has its Challenges,” Corvallis Gazette-Times

Hunting or Shooting Sports Category

  • First place: Christine Peterson, “To take the shot: Hunters work to explain why they didn’t pull the trigger,” Casper Star-Tribune
  • Second place: Christine Peterson, “The great equalizer: As hunter numbers struggle, I decided to enter the field,” Casper Star-Tribune
  • Third place: Brent Frazee, “Public Pursuit,” Joplin Globe

Outdoor Fun and Adventure Category
Sponsored by Izaak Walton League of America

  • First place: Christine Peterson, “Breaking it down: New mountain bike camps for adults build skills, confidence,” Casper Star-Tribune
  • Second place: Matthew Liere, “The ice whisperer,” The Spokesman-Review
  • Third place: Emily Stone, “A Naturalist on the Ice,” Price County Review

Blog Contest

Conservation or Nature Category
Sponsored by The Pew Charitable Trusts

  • First place: Justine Hausheer, “Deciding the Fate of Myanmar’s Forests,” Cool Green Science
  • Second place: Matthew Miller, “Strange and Unbelievable Facts About Shrews,” Cool Green Science
  • Third place: Bob Frye, “Green herons fascinating, tool-wielding water birds,” EverybodyAdventures

Family Participation/Youth Outdoor Education Category
Sponsored by Realtree

  • First place: Chris Hunt, “Precious Time,” Trout Unlimited’s Voices from the River blog
  • Second place: Matthew Miller, “Why Staying on the Trail is Bad for Nature,” Cool Green Science
  • Third place: Candice Gaukel Andrews, “The National Park Service: Big Wonders in Small Spots,” Natural Habitat Adventures’ Good Nature Travel blog

Fishing Category

  • First place: Justine Hausheer, “How to Fail at Fishing: The Diary of a Birder Learning to Fish,” Cool Green Science
  • Second place: Chris Hunt, “Yellowstone promise,” Trout Unlimited’s Voices from the River blog
  • Third place: Brett Prettyman, “Voices from the river: Fly fishing as therapy,” Trout Unlimited’s Voices from the River blog

Gear/Technical Category

  • First place: Jodi Stemler, “Choosing a Girl’s First Big Game Rifle,” Range365
  • Second place: Chris Hunt, “The caddis: ‘The most dishonest fly ever’,” Trout Unlimited’s Voices from the River blog
  • Third place: Bob Ford, “Chilling,” Beagle Bard blog

Humor Category

  • First place: Chris Hunt, “Rain, cold…and the clicker,” Trout Unlimited’s Voices from the River blog
  • Second place: Justine Hausheer, “The Incredible Adventure of the Pooping Sloth,” Cool Green Science
  • Third place: Justine Hausheer, “Australian Magpies Are The Real Angry Birds,” Cool Green Science

Hunting or Shooting Sports Category

  • First place: Bob Ford, “Black Powder Bunnies,” Beagle Bard blog
  • Second place: Bob Ford, “Good Run,” Lion Country Supply blog
  • Third place: Bob Frye, “Blind hunter takes his first deer on a memorable opening day,” EverybodyAdventures

Outdoor Fun and Adventure Category
Sponsored by Izaak Walton League of America

  • First place: Colleen Miniuk-Sperry, “Keep Paddling,” You Can Sleep When You’re Dead blog
  • Second place: Justine Hausheer, “Possum Terrors and Rediscovering Urban Wildlife,” Cool Green Science
  • Third place: Colleen Miniuk-Sperry, “Overturned,” You Can Sleep When You’re Dead blog

Column Contest

Overall Category

  • First place: Jack Ballard, Successful Hunter
  • Second place: Terry Brady, Pennsylvania Outdoors News
  • Third place: Candice Gaukel Andrews, Natural Habitat Adventures’ Good Nature Travel blog

Book/E-book Contest

General Audience Category

  • First place: Dave Hall, “Moving Water: An Artist’s Reflections on Fly Fishing, Friendship and Family”
  • Second place: Tim Romano, “Stilt Houses of Texas”
  • Third place: Reid Bryant, “The Orvis Guide to Upland Hunting”

Illustration/Graphic Contest

General/Overall Category

  • First place: Sam Caldwell, “Great Day in a Back Bay,” The Trip (book)
  • Second place: Bruce Cochran, “Way outside,” Kansas Wildlife & Parks magazine
  • Third place: Bruce Cochran, “Marsh madness #1,” Wildfowl magazine

Photography Contest

Action Category

  • First place: Carmen Alex, “Swarm O’Scads,” Edelweiss Keys
  • Second place: Gary Kramer, “Northern Pintail Flushing,” Montana Outdoors
  • Third place: Brian Grossenbacher, “Cloud Camo,” Simms Fishing

Family Participation/Youth Outdoor Education Category
Sponsored by Realtree

  • First place: Lefty Ray Chapa, “Grandson & Grandmother,” Kent Cartridge 2018 catalog
  • Second place: James Smedley, “Family Fire,” Municipality of Wawa
  • Third place: Lefty Ray Chapa, “Look Up into the Sky (Father & Son),” Corpus Christi Ducks Unlimited 2018 Banquet Program

Fauna Category

  • First place: Ken Dunwoody, “Impalas in the Spotlight,” charity donation
  • Second place: Ann and Rob Simpson, “Baby bobcats play time,” Virginia Wildlife magazine
  • Third place: Keith Crowley, “Lynx Family Portrait,” Northern Wilds Magazine

Flora Category

  • First place: Keith Crowley, “Up,” Hawke Optics
  • Second place: Lisa Ballard, “Maple Leaves Around Fungus,” Cool Green Science blog
  • Third place: Bill Vanderford, “Wild Banana Plant,” Lakeside Magazine

Outdoor Fun and Adventure Category
Sponsored by Izaak Walton League of America

  • First place: Brian Grossenbacher, “Paddleboard Maze,” The FlyFish Journal
  • Second place: James Smedley, “On the rocks,” Ontario Out of Doors magazine
  • Third place: Brian Grossenbacher, “Mother/Daughter Cliff Jumping,” Orvis

People Category

  • First place: Brian Grossenbacher, “Flash Light,” Field & Stream
  • Second place: Lefty Ray Chapa, “2 Poles,” Southwest Fly Fishing Magazine
  • Third place: Earl Harper, “Young Mongolian Girl,” Taimen Fund

Scenic Category

  • First place: Jack Ballard, “Yellowstone Sunrise,” Large Mammals of the Rocky Mountains (book)
  • Second place: Ann and Rob Simpson, “Lupines in Torres del Paine Patagonia,” Holbrook Travel Calendar
  • Third place: Ann and Rob Simpson, “Chincoteague Snow Geese at Sunrise,” Virginia Wildlife magazine

Photography Essay Contest

Overall Category

  • First place: Lefty Ray Chapa, “Texas Salt,” Southwest Fly Fishing magazine
  • Second place: Brian Grossenbacher, “WolfFish,” Gray’s Sporting Journal
  • Third place: Brian Grossenbacher, “Baja Birds,” Gray’s Sporting Journal
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