WASHINGTON, DC -- The National Cable Television Association today announced winners of the 3rd Annual Community Spirit Awards during the Washington Metropolitan Cable Club luncheon. The awards, honoring outstanding local and regional cable programming achievements, concluded NCTA’s two-day local and regional programming symposium.

Winners of the competition’s six categories are:
  • Cable Systems -- fewer than 50,000 subscribers: Sunflower Cablevision (Lawrence, KS) continues its 29-year commitment to local origination programming by airing 70 hours of community television each week. The company provides the city with local coverage of news, weather, sports and a regular line-up of specialty programs.
  • Cable Systems -- 50,000 - 150,000 subscribers: Comcast Cable Communications (Southfield, MI) offers both local and access programming to more than 100,000 subscribers in the northern suburbs of Metropolitan Detroit. Catering to its multi-cultural and economically diverse population, the system delivered more than 4,750 hours of diverse, community programming in 2000.
  • Cable Systems -- more than 150,000 subscribers: Cox Communications Louisiana (New Orleans, LA), celebrates the community’s diverse culture on its local channel Cox 10. The level of viewer response through support letters, voice messages and visits to its Louisiana Jukebox web site, reflects the system’s significant impact on its community.

  • Regional Network: News: Serving more than two million subscribers in six New England states, New England Cable News (Newton, MA), provides 24 hours of local news programming daily -- 365 days a year. In 2000, the network’s public service campaigns helped raise $12.5 million to fight cancer and $30 million to help protect woodlands in Maine.
  • Regional Network: Sports: Comcast SportsNet (Philadelphia, PA) goes beyond Phillies, Flyers and 76ers game action to provide insightful, thought-provoking sports news and conversation. The network serves the Greater Philadelphia region, a passionate sports fan base, which includes parts of Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware. Last year, Comcast SportsNet launched comcastsportsnet.com, its companion web site, providing fans with daily 24-hour sports coverage.
  • Regional Network: Community & Public Affairs: Created to fill a void in quality local programming beyond local news and sports, Rainbow Media’s The MetroChannels (New York, NY) provides a branded package of channels created for New York City and surrounding tri-state communities in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.
Rita Cosby, FOX News Channel’s Senior Washington Correspondent, hosted the event. NCTA President and CEO Robert Sachs introduced Cosby, who presented awards in the six categories before an audience of industry representatives.

The Community Spirit Awards were established in 1999 to recognize the quality, value and contributions a collective body of local programming (distributed by a cable system or regional cable network) makes to a specific community, particularly in the area of news, sports or public affairs. All submitted programming must have aired on a cable system or regional cable network in the United States between January 1 and December 31, 2000.

A blue-ribbon panel consisting of senior executives representing programming, MSO operations and public affairs judged the competition. In evaluating entries, judges considered program content, execution and viewer impact. Judges’ scoring determined the three nominees in each category, with the nominee receiving the highest score winning the award.

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