Inside Seven Days | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

Monday, February 26, 2018

Seven Days Wins 27 Awards in Regional Media Competition

Posted By on Mon, Feb 26, 2018 at 4:34 PM

Seven Days' 2017 NENPA awards - COREY GRENIER
  • Corey Grenier
  • Seven Days' 2017 NENPA awards
Seven Days, Vermont’s free, independent newsweekly, won 14 first-place awards in this year’s New England Better Newspaper Competition, including top honors for its reporting and writing, website, headline writing, design and presentation, and video journalism. The paper also won nine second-place awards and four third-place awards — 27 total.

The contest is organized by the New England Newspaper & Press Association. Winners were announced at NENPA’s annual convention Saturday night in Boston.

NENPA members submitted more than 3,000 entries, distributed among five categories: daily newspapers with circulation up to 30,000; daily newspapers with circulation more than 30,000; weekly newspapers with circulation up to 6,000; weekly newspapers with circulation more than 6,000; and specialty publications. Seven Days — which distributes 36,000 copies every week — competed against numerous other large New England weeklies.

Seven Days’ 14 first-place awards included:

• Three for “Stuck in Vermont” senior multimedia producer Eva Sollberger in the video categories. “A high-quality production with top-notch sound and graphics. A+!” wrote one contest judge. The winners were:

• Overall Website, for Seven Days staff. “An enticing front page that manages to elevate both news and culture,” a judge opined about

• Headline Writing, for story-toppers that, a judge wrote, “invite readers in.” The five headlines that made up the entry included this one: “Surrender Dorothy? Vermont may rename its children’s book award because of Dorothy Canfield Fisher’s ties to the eugenics movement.”

• Overall Design and Presentation, for the Seven Days design team. “Tops in presentation,” noted one judge.

• Crime and Courts Reporting for Mark Davis, for his “Death by Drugs” package that recounted fatal opiate overdoses in Vermont. A judge cited the “masterly article” that “brings home the opioid crisis by profiling 14 victims.”
• Local Personality Profile, also for Davis, for his story about former Vermont judge Ed Cashman, who was attacked for his handling of a sex offender’s case. “Details are rich and the pacing is excellent,” a judge wrote. “It is a solid, engaging and informative read.”
• Commentary, for political editor Paul Heintz, for “Rutland First: Vermont's Homegrown Opposition to Syrian Resettlement.” A judge concluded, “This examination of one group’s resistance to immigration was even-handed and made its points most effectively.”
• Arts & Entertainment reporting, for Dan Bolles, for “From Phish Shows to Breweries, Builder Russ Bennett Makes Magic.” Gushed a judge, “Storytelling devices he used created a smart and engaging piece packed with character and detail.”
• Human Interest Feature Story, for Sasha Goldstein. His “Lucky Bums” piece about Vermont’s pioneering skiing enthusiasts included “well-told profiles of the interesting characters whose lifelines made the region what it is,” a judge commented.
• Racial or Ethnic Issue Coverage, for Kymelya Sari, for her story, “Deaths Prompt Review of Safety, Swimming Programs for New Americans.” A judge called it a “well-written and enlightening report” that “brings together relevant voices and insights.” • Reporting on Religious Issues, also for Sari, for her story “With Imam Leaving, Colchester Mosque at a Crossroads.”
  • Illustration: Harry Bliss/Design: Rev. Diane Sullivan
• Illustration, for Harry Bliss, for a Seven Days cover illustration depicting President Trump, inspired by the classic Attack of the 50 Foot Woman film poster.

In second-place finishes, Heintz had four awards, and reporters Alicia Freese and Molly Walsh each earned one. A news photograph by James Buck and a sports video by Sollberger also claimed second-place slots. And Seven Days won second place for general excellence; a judge noted not only the paper’s appealing design but also its “strong enterprise reporting.”

Friday, January 19, 2018

Facebook's Changing. Here Are Seven Ways to Find Seven Days

Posted By on Fri, Jan 19, 2018 at 3:09 PM

Been reading about Facebook’s News Feed changes? Yeah, so have we. And, honestly, your guess is as good as ours on how they're going to affect what you see when you log in and start scrolling.

What we do know is that we can't rely on Facebook to show you the stories we post going forward. We think you'll still see some of them, but maybe not as often, and maybe not the ones you'd really like to see.

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Monday, December 4, 2017

Seven Days Wins 30 Vermont Press Association Awards

Posted By on Mon, Dec 4, 2017 at 4:22 PM

First place photo in the "General News" category - MATTHEW THORSEN
  • Matthew Thorsen
  • First place photo in the "General News" category
Seven Days picked up 30 journalism awards, including 13 first-place prizes, at the Vermont Press Association’s annual meeting Thursday in Montpelier.

VPA officials handed out awards for two separate contests — one covering July 2015 through June 2016 and one covering July 2016 through June 2017 — at the gathering, held at the Capitol Plaza Hotel and Conference Center. The VPA includes 11 daily newspapers and four dozen non-dailies.

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Thursday, October 26, 2017

Seven Days Hires Award-Winning Reporter Taylor Dobbs

Posted By on Thu, Oct 26, 2017 at 12:01 PM

Taylor Dobbs
  • Taylor Dobbs
Award-winning journalist Taylor Dobbs is joining the news team at Vermont’s independent newsweekly, Seven Days. Since September 2013, he’s been a digital reporter at Vermont Public Radio, where he has distinguished himself online and on-air.

Dobbs, 27, has won regional Edward R. Murrow Awards for his coverage of the opiate crisis, a quadruple homicide and Green Mountain Power’s failure to document expenses. Earlier this month, he won a national Murrow Award for a video illustrating how the Iowa Democratic caucus works — using Legos.
At Seven Days, Dobbs will serve as an investigative reporter and will cover Vermont state government and politics. He’ll start December 6.

Prior to joining VPR, Dobbs wrote several freelance pieces for Seven Days and interned for He earned a bachelor’s in journalism from Northeastern University in 2013. Shortly before graduating, Dobbs got some very real-world reporting experience: In the immediate aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings, he joined the manhunt for the men responsible and covered it all on Twitter. His on-the-scene reporting and photography were picked up by news outlets around the world.

“Taylor’s not going to sit around in a newsroom,” said Seven Days publisher and coeditor Paula Routly. “He’s eager, ambitious, inventive and plugged in.”

Dobbs grew up in Montpelier — less than a mile from the Statehouse.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Meet Innovators and Recruiters — and Speakers From Tesla and Facebook — at the 11th Vermont Tech Jam

Posted By on Tue, Oct 17, 2017 at 11:45 AM

  • Matthew Thorsen
The state’s top tech firms will be hiring at Seven DaysVermont Tech Jam, a free event which takes place Friday and Saturday, October 20 and 21, 2017, at the Champlain Valley Expo in Essex Junction.

The expo floor will host more than 60 companies, colleges and tech organizations. But this year’s Jam is much more than just a job fair: The schedule includes a dozen presentations organized into three tracks: one for small business owners and decision makers, one for job seekers, and another for anyone curious about emerging opportunities in the local tech scene. This year’s speakers represent companies including Tesla, Facebook, IBM, Burton Snowboards and the new Burlington Code Academy.

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Friday, October 13, 2017

Seven Days Political Editor Paul Heintz Wins Two Prestigious Journalism Prizes

Posted By on Fri, Oct 13, 2017 at 4:15 PM

  • Matthew Thorsen
  • Paul Heintz
For his hard-hitting political reporting and successful efforts to pass a media shield law in Vermont, Seven Days political editor Paul Heintz has been selected as the AP Sevellon Brown New England Journalist of the Year. The New England Society of News Editors honored Heintz at its fall conference with the New England Newspaper & Press Association on Thursday in Natick, Mass. “He’s not just a dogged reporter and eloquent writer,” the judges said of Heintz, 33, of Hinesburg; “he’s a leader in the field.”

Heintz and Seven Days also received the 2017 Morley L. Piper First Amendment Award, which is presented “to a New England newspaper that shows leadership on First Amendment issues, either by the exceptional quality of its reporting or commentary, or for the way it overcame legal challenges.

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Monday, August 21, 2017

Eva Sollberger’s Stuck in Vermont Video Series Hits 500 Episode Mark

Posted By on Mon, Aug 21, 2017 at 12:10 PM

Seven Days, Vermont’s free, independent newsweekly, today released the 500th episode of Eva Sollberger’s video series, Stuck in Vermont. Since 2007, Sollberger has been documenting Vermont people, places, events and traditions in her videos, which are published each Thursday on Her Stuck in Vermont stories have been viewed nearly four million times on YouTube. Since 2012, Sollberger and her videos have also appeared weekly on the WCAX local news.

For her 500th episode, Sollberger wrote, directed and starred in a 22-minute musical, featuring several well-known locals, including actor

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Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Seven Days Wins Three First-Place Awards in National Media Competition

Posted By on Wed, Aug 9, 2017 at 12:49 PM

Seven Days, Vermont’s free, independent newsweekly, won three first-place awards at the annual Association of Alternative Newsmedia conference last month in Washington, D.C.

The AAN Awards recognize the most artful, compelling and courageous journalism produced each year by the alternative newsmedia. AAN member publications vary in size and circulation, and are based in cities across the U.S. and Canada; the annual awards contest gives these publications the opportunity to compete against their peers. This year’s competition consisted of 817 entries submitted by 67 publications; the Philip Merrill College of Journalism at the University of Maryland conducted the judging. Seven Days’ awards included:

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Friday, May 26, 2017

What's the Deal With Our 50-Foot Donald Trump Cover?

Posted By and on Fri, May 26, 2017 at 4:33 PM

This week's Seven Days cover features an illustration by Vermont cartoonist and regular New Yorker contributor Harry Bliss.

How does something like this go from the original concept to the front of 36,000 newspapers? Here's our art director, Rev. Diane Sullivan, to explain:

And once you've taken a peek behind the scenes, make sure to check out the cover story, by Paul Heintz: "Trumpatized? Prominent Vermonters Reveal Their White House Worries."

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Vermont Restaurant Week Donates $21,380 to the Vermont Foodbank

Posted By on Thu, May 25, 2017 at 2:26 PM

Vermont Foodbank staff
  • Vermont Foodbank staff
A total of $21,380 was donated to the Vermont Foodbank as a result of Seven Days' 8th annual Vermont Restaurant Week. This popular event was presented by Vermont Federal Credit Union and organized by Seven Days.

“Vermont Restaurant Week is an incredible celebration of food for our community. It raises awareness about the issue of hunger in our state and helps us ensure all of our neighbors have the quality food they need to thrive,” said Vermont Foodbank CEO John Sayles. “We are so grateful to Seven Days, Vermont Federal Credit Union, City Market, the Vermont Community Foundation, sponsors, restaurants and customers who came together to make this generous gift possible. Their commitment helps work toward a reality where everyone in our community can celebrate the joy of good food.”

“This is Vermont Federal Credit Union’s eighth year as presenting sponsor for Vermont Restaurant Week,” said VFCU President and CEO Jean Giard. “We are proud to be part of this event, which supports the Vermont Foodbank and features our local restaurants.”

Many factors contributed to the total donation. Proceeds from the Bottomless Brunch Bash, a curated tasting event featuring local chefs, went to the foodbank. Donations also came from a panel discussion at ArtsRiot; from Aperitivo, a snacky social hour at Maglianero; event raffles; and a portion of sponsorship dollars.

For the fourth consecutive year, the Vermont Community Foundation provided a matching grant of $5,000 for the foodbank. The foundation was established in 1986 by Vermonters to serve their charitable goals and provides leadership in giving by responding to community needs, mobilizing and connecting philanthropists, and by keeping Vermont’s nonprofit sector vital with grants and other investments.

City Market/Onion River Co-op, one of the festival’s sponsors, made the Vermont Foodbank its 40 percent recipient in the store’s Rally for Change program during the month of April. That program encourages customers to round up their total at the register and donate the difference.

Lastly, participating restaurants were encouraged to set up individual fundraising pages on to help raise more money for the foodbank. The Hyde Away Inn & Restaurant in Waitsfield collected more than $2,000 for the cause.

More than 100 restaurants across the state participated in Vermont Restaurant Week this year. Each location offered special, prix-fixe meals during the event, which ran from April 21 to 30.

In addition to Vermont Federal Credit Union and City Market, this year’s sponsors were Vermont Creamery, Switchback Brewing Co., WhistlePig Whiskey, Swish White River and the Vermont Department of Tourism & Marketing, with media support from Jumponit and WNCS the Point.

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