2023 JUDGED TMAC Award Categories (Presented in 2024 for 2023 work)

Timeline for Judged Awards 

  • OPEN for Submissions: January 15, 2024
  • INFORMATION SESSION: January 17, 2:30 PM Eastern (11:30 AM Pacific)
    Plan to attend this session, RSVP here
  • DEADLINE for Submissions: 11:59 PM EASTERN, February 19, 2024
  • FINALISTS ANNOUNCED: May 2024
  • WINNERS ANNOUNCED: June 15, 2024
    Winners will be announced at the TMAC Conference Awards Gala on June 15, 2024 in St. John's, Newfoundland & Labrador.


Be a part of our Awards Program, AWARD SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES are now available.

NOTE: Member Voted & Chapter Awards Call for Submissions will be in March.

Annually TMAC is pleased to host and curate the TMAC Awards which recognize the very best our association produces in three categories: Written Word, Visual and Written, Visual and Broadcast.

IMPORTANT: 

  • The 2023 Awards, presented in June 2024, celebrate excellence for works published in 2023, between January 1- December 31.
  • We encourage all styles of writing to be entered as they will be judged according to criteria that best fits the piece.
     

Sponsorship Opportunity: Be a proud sponsor and champion of one (or more) of the following award categories and enhance your exposure pre, and post-conference and be onsite in St. John's, Newfoundland in June, presenting your sponsored award at the awards gala on June 15th!
See Award and Conference Sponsorship opportunities here.

**PLEASE REVIEW THE AWARDS GUIDELINES PRIOR TO SUBMITTING.**


Written


1. BEST CULTURAL & HISTORICAL STORY
A cultural/historical story should highlight a journey that provides information and insight into a specific place. It may focus on an art form or event, a local custom, or any travel experience that shares historical perspective or sheds light on a specific culture. Story topics can range from Indigenous traditions to a funeral ceremony in Bali, a profile of a historic character to a story about the Klondike gold rush. If your story gives the reader motivation to learn, discover, experience and consume the tangible and intangible cultural and historical aspects in a tourism destination, then this is the place.
(See Judges' scoring criteria: TBA)

2. BEST FOOD/DRINK STORY
This category focuses on culinary travel in all its forms. It may educate the reader about food tourism and serve up some delectable insight into how it is deeply rooted within a community. Your food and drink article could be about a city’s walking or eating tour, learning about how local food is grown, a foraging adventure, a regenerative and sustainable farm-to-table experience, a feature on a chef making a difference or a start-up distillery. If you’re the Anthony Bourdain of the written word in travel, this category is for you.
(See Judges' scoring criteria: TBA)

3. BEST TOURISM FOR POSITIVE CHANGE STORY 
(formerly BEST NATURE OR ENVIRONMENTAL/RESPONSIBLE TOURISM STORY)
As our understanding of the broad types of damage that tourism can inflict has evolved, so has this category. In an effort to reflect the widest possible range of positive travel stories, this category is wide open to stories about experiences, businesses, groups or ideas that have made travel a force for good. Whether you’re writing about sustainability, accessibility, inclusion, new approaches in regenerative or sustainable travel or something entirely different; the requirement of this category is that you tell a good story that opens our eyes to the positive possibilities of travel.
(See Judges' scoring criteria: TBA)

4. BEST OUTDOOR ADVENTURE, SPORT OR RECREATION STORY
It’s the activity itself that’s key to this category. Any soft or hard adventure, sport or recreation feature that brings the reader along with the writer, belongs here. From sporting events to canoe trips, skydiving to hiking, this category should draw stories that come to life, and maybe even get one’s adrenaline pumping.
(See Judges' scoring criteria: TBA)

NOTE: Alternating years will welcome submissions for BEST TRAVEL BOOK.
Introduced in 2023, this category is offered in alternating years. This category will welcome submissions again in 2025 for works published in 2023 and 2024.

 

Visual

5. LANDSCAPE, NATURE OR EVOCATION OF PLACE
Connections to environments play a pivotal role in a photographer’s ability to evoke a sense of place, while effectively showcasing their subject matter. Whether it’s a tranquil moment in the desert, a well-timed capture of wildlife in action, a macro shot of a forest’s flora or fauna, a bustling cityscape, or a vibrant sunset, photographs in this category should convey the stories of our surroundings.
(See Judges' scoring criteria: TBA)

6. BEST PEOPLE PHOTO
People photographs depict an aspect of culture, life or society, as perceived through the image of an individual or group. The person or people shown should clearly relate to a travel destination. The background should help “place” the subject, but not overpower the human aspect of an image.
*If this is a photo of yourself, it must have been taken by you.
(See Judges' scoring criteria: TBA)

7. BEST PHOTO SERIES
This category celebrates a series of photos that capture the viewer’s attention and tells a story.
IMPORTANT: We invite you to submit a collection of four (4) photos taken by an individual member, that accompanies any single article, digital or print. The submitting photographer need not have produced the accompanying editorial.
(See Judges' scoring criteria: TBA)

*NEW* ALL MEDIA FORMS


NOTE: Within the following two Multi/any media Categories ALL forms of storytelling are welcome. Expanded to be inclusive of all forms of storytelling by TMACers, this includes digital, written and broadcast -  everything from articles to podcasts, videos to digital storytelling, and immersive and interactive media.

8. BEST SPIRIT OF CANADA STORY
This category celebrates those stories that bring Canada, its landscape, its cultures and its people alive on the page. This category is wide open and diverse-just like Canada. Submissions should reflect the unique stories that can only happen in Canada.
(See Judges' scoring criteria: TBA)

9. BEST CANADIAN INDIGENOUS TOURISM EXPERIENCE STORY
Presented by Indigenous Tourism Industry Association of Canada

“We have a story to tell.” Indigenous Peoples in Canada have been here for millennia and the authenticity, uniqueness and diversity of stories and experiences offered are being celebrated through a vibrant, and growing, Indigenous tourism industry. Closely guided by community values of respect, honour and integrity, Indigenous Peoples have been sharing their culture with visitors to their traditional territories since time immemorial. Building on these values as sustainable building blocks, businesses are created and welcoming guests to learn about and engage with Indigenous Peoples through quality, authentic and transformative Indigenous cultural tourism experiences.

This award category invites submissions that share and celebrate engaging, authentic and transformative, Canadian based, Indigenous experiences, amplifying and giving voice to the stories from our Indigenous communities that can and should be heard, and experienced.
(See Judges' scoring criteria: TBA)

MULTI- MEDIA


10. BEST SELF-PUBLISHED TRAVEL WEBSITE (INCLUDES BLOG)
This category is for those who publish an online travel website. Whether it’s crafting itineraries, sharing things to see, do and eat in a destination, or tell stories, writing should reflect the author’s experience of a place and aim to better the reader’s travel experience.
IMPORTANT: To enter this category, you must be the owner of the travel website and articles submitted for the judging must be content (written words and photos) that have been created by you. Your submission will be based on three (3) articles only that you submit from your website, along with the overall holistic website design.
*Only one (1) entry submission per website in the cases of co-owned websites is permitted.
(See Judges' scoring criteria: TBA)

11. BEST EMERGING & BROADCAST MEDIA:
Stories 10-minutes & UNDER in Length 

NOTE: Specifically for this category, the play length of the story (in whatever format) should be 10-minutes or under. Stories over 10-minutes in length are invited to submit separately under the NEW: BEST EMERGING & BROADCAST MEDIA: Stories Over 10-minutes in Length, which will be an alternating year award, beginning this year.

It is exciting to see an increasing number of our members sharing their travel stories through various forms of digital video and audio storytelling. This category is designed to celebrate that, as well as to encourage storytelling with newer and emerging forms of immersive and interactive media, like virtual reality and augmented reality.

We invite you to submit your travel related podcasts, films, digital video (this includes TikTok videos and videos on other short form video platforms), audio guides, games, immersive media (such as augmented reality, virtual reality and mixed reality projects), travel apps, and interactive stories in this category.

Where these exist as a series, you are restricted to submitting ONE individual episode.

*Please Note: Subject to being limited to submitting the same ‘story’ once, you are welcome to consider submitting your Broadcast and Emerging Media stories within the Best Spirit of Canada and Best Canadian Indigenous Tourism Experience categories as well.
(See Judges' scoring criteria: TBA)

12. BEST EMERGING & BROADCAST MEDIA:
Stories OVER 10-minutes in Length

(an alternating year award - offered in 2024, for works created in 2023)
NOTE: For this category, the play length of the story (in whatever format) should be over 10-minutes Stories of 10-minutes or under in length are invited to submit to the BEST EMERGING & BROADCAST MEDIA for Stories 10-minutes and UNDER in Length.

It is exciting to see an increasing number of our members sharing their travel stories through various forms of digital video and audio storytelling. This category is designed to celebrate that, as well as to encourage storytelling with newer and emerging forms of immersive and interactive media, like virtual reality and augmented reality.

We invite you to submit your travel related podcasts, films, digital video, audio guides, games, immersive media (such as augmented reality, virtual reality and mixed reality projects), travel apps, and interactive stories in this category. Where these exist as a series, we ask you to select an individual episode only to submit.

*Please Note: Subject to being limited to submitting the same ‘story’ once, you are welcome to consider submitting your Broadcast and Emerging Media stories within the Best Spirit of Canada and Best Canadian Indigenous Tourism Experience categories as well.
*As a reminder, do not submit your entire web series, YouTube Channel, or podcast series. If you do so, it will be disqualified.

Not sure whether your project qualifies?
See examples of the types of media and storytelling that you can submit, here.
Still not sure?  Send us an email and ask (administration@travelmedia.ca).
 
(See Judges' scoring criteria: TBA)

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