It was among several awards SPJ bestowed to the news weekly during the organization’s April 21 banquet in Oklahoma City.

Gazette staff members won four first-place awards. Managing editor Rod Lott won first place in Entertainment Feature for “The wizard of gore,” which detailed the Sooner state’s connection to B-movie schlockmeister Herschell Gordon Lewis. Lott also won second place for “Hating Harry Potter,” in which the writer confessed his dislike for the boy wizard. Lott also won first place in the Headlines category.

Gazette editor-in-chief Phil Bacharach won first place for Feature Writing for “Going ape,” which chronicled a controversial social experiment in the 1970s involving a chimpanzee born at the University of Oklahoma. Bacharach also took first-place honors for Arts Criticism, while Lott took second place. Both awards came for film reviews.

Gazette staff writer Clifton Adcock won second place in Government Reporting for his coverage of the record money spent in 2011's city elections. He also earned third place for Best Reporting Portfolio.

In Leisure Writing, Lott, Jenny Coon Peterson and Matt Carney earned second place for “Fair play,” a look at the culinary adventures to be had at the Oklahoma State Fair.

Oklahoma Gazette competed in Newspaper Division A for publications with a circulation of more than 25,000.

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