Congrats to TulsaKids Design, Digital & Editorial Winners

Each year I have the honor of attending the awards dinner at the annual Parenting Media Association conference. While I enjoy seeing colleagues (many have become friends) from around the country, and attending workshops and presentations, the highlight of the conference is the PMA Design & Editorial Awards dinner. TulsaKids always comes away with many honors, and it’s gratifying to see that our little publication can stand with the best. This year was no different. TulsaKids media came home from the recent conference at St. Pete’s Beach, FL with a total of 13 awards.

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(L to R) Tara Rittler, Web & Social Media Editor; Lindsey Copes, Media Account Executive; Chuck Foshee, Publisher; Betty Casey, Editor

PMA received 566 entries for magazine issues and digital products this year. Reuben Stern of the University of Missouri’s School of Journalism oversaw the judging by faculty members.

“This year’s winning entries once again showcase the PMA publications’ strength in offering practical and frank advice on tough subjects, as well as extensive suggestions for off-the-radar activities that expand children’s horizons,” Stern said. “Amid a sea of questionable material online, these articles are packed with reliable information from experts and primary sources. The stories also validate and inspire parents by giving a window into the lives of others dealing with similar challenges.”

TulsaKids’ staff and freelancers work hard to put out print, digital and social media products, and I am honored to work with such talented people. Providing the best information we can to local parents is always at the center of everything we do.

Congratulations to this year’s winners. Here they are, along with judges’ comments:

Column: Child Development & Parenting Issues

Gold: TulsaKids; “Stages: Babies & Toddlers”; Kiley Roberson.

Rich in accumulated knowledge, this column offers personal experience as the basis for a set of useful tips. A column on children and grief, for example, starts with the poignant loss of the writer’s mother (and the children’s grandmother). The tips she then shares are full of common sense and hard-earned wisdom.

Column: Family Fun

Gold: TulsaKids; “Get Cooking”; Natalie Mikles.

These columns explore how to turn cooking into an activity and event to engage youngsters, from a tea party to holiday cookies. The columns feature tasty recipes and ideas to make cooking fun for young and old.

Travel Feature

Bronze: TulsaKids; “Fayetteville, Arkansas: Local Charm, History and Outdoor Adventures”; Diane Tritt Eaton, writer.

This feature takes the audience on a thorough tour of the home of the Arkansas Razorbacks, offering suggestions for day-tripping families seeking to bask in nature, learn about history and eat well along the way. It’s both entertaining and useful.

Personal Essay

Gold: TulsaKids; “Hip Mom in the Hospital”; Jill VanTrease, writer.

A terrifying and heartfelt retelling of the columnist’s rush to the hospital when her 4-year-old became suddenly very ill. What looked like a bug was something much more serious, creating a cascade of emotions. You can feel the fear, the questioning and the love of this mom as she lives a parent’s nightmare.

Q & A Interview

Gold: TulsaKids; “Green Country Grownup: Muriel Fahrion”; Nancy A. Moore, writer.

This is a bright little feature on the creator of the Strawberry Shortcake character, who tells of lying under the dining room table and drawing as a 4-year-old who already knew she wanted to become an artist. Conversational questions elicit fascinating details about a successful career that spans decades.

Investigative Feature

Gold: TulsaKids; “Is CKLA the Best Way to Teach Kids to Read?”; Betty Casey.

The author does an excellent job of explaining to readers what the issue is and what the various arguments are. The article is well sourced, well written and leaves a reader feeling like they have a much greater understanding of a complex, crucial issue in their school district.

Non-Traditional Story Form

Silver: TulsaKids; “Take the Family on a Route 66 Road Trip”; Tara Rittler.

This helpful feature lays out a simple plan for traveling a historic route, including travel times and tips for things to see and do along the way. Breaking the information out by city and presenting the stops in order makes the material easier to use.

Interior Photography (Original)

Gold: TulsaKids; “I’m a Tulsa Kid”; Sheeba Atiqi.

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The active poses of the child and statue, both with slanted arms, are mimicked in the slight tilt of the camera. The arms lead us down the street. They both look like they are about to jump off the page.

Best Blog/Bloggers

Silver: TulsaKids; “Grand Life”; Diane Morrow-Kondos, blogger.

An advice-packed blog by a grandmother who provides thought leadership on how to raise well-balanced children. Her columns look at the importance of teaching gratitude, encouraging special-needs children and putting magic back into the holidays. Topics are varied, informative and engaging.

Bronze: TulsaKids; “Spaghetti on the Wall”; Tara Rittler, blogger.

An engaging, photo-packed blog on the many cultural events and school activities in Tulsa. A skim gives a detailed overview, helping busy parents decide how to commit their time in a smart way. The writer gives advice on everything from ticket prices to magnet school enrollment to riding the bus. The blog is fun, thoughtful and perfect for parents.

Best E-Newsletter

Gold: Tulsa Kids; “TulsaKids’ Weekly E-Newsletter”; Tara Rittler.

This weekly email newsletter puts the best of what the publication has to offer in readers’ inbox. Each carries a theme offering links to family-friendly events, a community calendar, links to relevant blog posts, giveaways and contests and the publication’s print editions. There’s just enough text on the page to give readers context, while still maintaining a scannable design perfect for mobile devices.


Best Use of Social Media

Bronze: TulsaKids; “TulsaKids Social Media”; Tara Rittler.

Not every reader will see every edition of the magazine, but if they’re following this publication on Facebook and Instagram, they’re guaranteed access, conversation and community. The strategy involves keeping platforms separate, so what you see on Facebook won’t necessarily show up on Instagram, and vice versa. This gives the audience fresh content designed to attract, and keep, their attention.


Ancillary General Excellence

Bronze: TulsaKids; “College & Career Planner 2019-20”; Chuck Foshee, Betty Casey.

This guide is full of helpful resources for parents and students getting ready to attend college. It is cleanly written, service oriented and knows the audience. The feature on where to take college courses while in high school is nicely localized. The issue includes diverse subjects, including the strong cover illustration.

Awards Pin

Categories: Editor’s Blog