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Streetsblog L.A./LongBeachize/Santa Monica Next Are Finalists for NINE L.A. Press Club Awards

Friends of Oscar Toledo, Jr., gather around the ghost bike put up at 47th and Normandie in South LA. Sahra Sulaiman/Streetsblog LA. This photo is a finalist for an award from the L.A. Press Club
Friends of Oscar Toledo, Jr., gather around the ghost bike put up at 47th and Normandie in South LA. Sahra Sulaiman/Streetsblog L.A. This photo is a finalist for an award from the L.A. Press Club
Friends of Oscar Toledo, Jr., gather around the ghost bike put up at 47th and Normandie in South LA. Sahra Sulaiman/Streetsblog L.A.

The votes are in, and while we don't have all the final results, we do know that Streetsblog Los Angeles, LongBeachize, and Santa Monica Next are finalists for nine awards from the Los Angeles Press Club for our work in 2014.

Every year at this time, I mention that award-winning journalism doesn't come free. If you want to help us celebrate our nominations, consider a donation at Streetsblog Los Angeles (donate here!), LongBeachize (donate here!), and Santa Monica Next (donate here!).

Streetsblog Los Angeles is up for "Best Blog" for the second year in a row. Last year, Streetsblog LA won this category in our first year as a finalist. Our competition for this award is pretty stiff with blogs from Truthdig, Hollywood Reporter, and KCET rounding out the category.

For the second year in a row, one of our teammates is up for "Online Journalist of the Year" as LongBeachize editor Brian Addison is recognized for both his work with LongBeachize and the Long Beach Post. For LongBeachize, Addison's coverage of the Terminal Island Freeway removal project is a finalist for Best Online News Story. For the Post, Addison is a finalist for his eerie photography essay of an abandoned pool at a soon-to-be-demolished hotel.

As has become the norm, Sahra Sulaiman is nominated for a bevy of awards. From a photo of friends mourning at a ghost bike, to a news story on her coverage of the public relations disaster Metro created for itself at Mariachi Plaza, to a heart-rending features story that simply asks, "To Be or Not Be a Gang Banger, Is That Really the Question?;" Sahra continues to write the stories and capture the images that nobody else does.

But perhaps something of a surprise is that Sahra was also nominated for "Best Online Sports Feature" for her coverage of how a kickball league has had a spillover impact as a community improvement tool. Where public space is contested, organized sports may be the only way at-risk youth can access parks. The tournament set up by Watts-based bike clubs allowed the youth to not only access a gorgeous park that is normally off-limits to them, but also forged greater black-brown unity in an area where racial tensions can sometimes run high. It's a great story.

Perhaps the biggest surprise is our two nominations in the lifestyle section. I'll be duking it out with Santa Monica Next's Saul Rubin for this honor with writers from Neon Tommy and the Huffington Post. OK, "duking it out" is overdoing it...while I'm a big fan of my own writing, Saul's video report on the history of a locally-owned, family-owned doughnut shop in Santa Monica is pretty awesome.

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