The Nation won three first-place awards and five other prizes at the annual convention of the Quebec Community Newspapers’ Association.

The award banquet was held in picturesque Mont St. Gabriel, north of Montreal.

Chisasibi Elder Sally Matthew won first place for Best Feature Story for her piece called Names of Lakes, which was about the Cree names of places up the Chisasibi River.

The judge wrote: “’Story’ is important and storytelling is an art form. This piece ‘feels’ like storytelling rather than a written piece. The storyteller takes one into her story, lets them feel the hunger, lets them taste the marten broth.”

Another first-place went to The Nation’s 1998 Elders’ Calender for Best Community Newspaper Promotion. The judge said: “Most original way to acquaint the community with Elders. A quality production I am sure everyone has hanging in their homes. An excellent project.”

An anti-smoking ad won first for Best In-House Ad. “It was easy to give this ad first place,” said the judge.

Other awards went to: Neil Diamond and Katerina Cizek (2nd place for Best Arts and Entertainment Story), Ernest Webb (3rd for Best Photo Essay), Xavier Kataquapit (3rd place, Best Column) and Alex Roslin (2nd place, Best News Story, and 3rd place, Best Investigative/In-Depth Reporting).

Congratulations to all the winners and also to The Portage magazine of Waskaganish, which was welcomed into the QCNA at the convention.