Point and Clique: The 2012 RFT St. Louis Web Awards

Point and Clique: The 2012 <i>RFT</i> St. Louis Web Awards
Sam Schnieders
Best Political Blog blogger Eli Yokley. Read a profile of Yokley here.
View a slideshow of the RFT 2012 St. Louis Web Awards Party.

At press time it was impossible to know for certain what Barack Obama would say during this week's State of the Union address. But if the commander in chief followed his previous scripts (and those of his predecessors), at some point Tuesday night he uttered the phrase: "The state of the union is strong."

And that got us thinking. One could use the same term to describe St. Louis' online community. Its health is strong. Its interests vast. Its ability to entertain boundless. We should know. We just spent weeks poring over some 1,000 websites, blogs and social-media accounts nominated from more than 400 readers.

Every Little Thing's Stacy Anderson. Read more about Every Little Thing here.
Jennifer Silverberg
Every Little Thing's Stacy Anderson. Read more about Every Little Thing here.
Best Kickstarter Campaign went to Christopher Badell and Paul Bender for Sentinels of the Multiverse. Read more about the Sentinels of the Multiverse kickstarter campaign here.
Jennifer Silverberg
Best Kickstarter Campaign went to Christopher Badell and Paul Bender for Sentinels of the Multiverse. Read more about the Sentinels of the Multiverse kickstarter campaign here.

Along the way we ran across a few familiar sites and many more hidden gems. No matter the topic — be it a blog on architecture or sex, a video series on sports or music, a restaurant's Twitter account or the mad tweets of amusing micro-blogger — all nominees shared one thing in common: an obsession with their subject matter that made following along a delight and an education.

Choosing finalists for each of the following 21 categories was no easy task. Electing a winner was even harder. Congratulations, then, to those whose names appear on the next several pages.

And to those of you whose site didn't make the list? Here's hoping we'll see your name nominated again next year when the state of our union is, no doubt, even stronger. — Chad Garrison

The social-media gurus who agreed to serve as this year's judges are, in some cases, associated with projects or companies receiving awards. They recused themselves from judging the categories in question.

Best Neighborhood Blog

The Judges Say: In Soulard, you never know what the day will bring. One afternoon you might be admiring the architecture and imaging yourself in old-timey France, the next you're staring at exposed breasts or witnessing a holdup. Thank God there's iLoveSoulard to chronicle it all with a hefty dose of humor and snark to inform us of the neighborhood's vast array of flavors.

Count On Downtown — www.countondowntown.com
Nicki's Central West End Guide — www.nickidwyer.typepad.com
NoCo STL — www.nocostl.com
Cherokee Street News — www.cherokeestreetnews.org

Best Music Blog

The Judges Say: OK, it's not really fair. KDHX (88.1 FM) has tremendous resources, including an army of volunteer writers and DJs and an in-house studio for shooting great live performances. But, hey, at least the radio station isn't squandering its opportunities. Instead, it has made KDHX Blog the envy of any music site out there, with expert reviews and interviews of local and traveling acts, music downloads and a breadth of content as diverse as its over-the-air broadcasts.

I Went to a Show — www.iwenttoashow.com
3 Minute Record — www.3minuterecord.wordpress.com
Music VS Man — www.musicvsman.com

Best Personal Blog
City in a Jar

The Judges Say: Two twentysomethings coming of age in the city. We know; it sounds like the insipid plot of a network sitcom. But City in a Jar is anything but vapid, with bloggers Jessica and Maddie deftly chronicling their experiences with everything from food to fashion to movies and literature. Not only are Jessica and Maddie exceptional writers, but their stunning photography ensures we don't click to the next channel.

Running From the Law — www.runninglawyer.blogspot.com
sKIDmarks — www.skidmarking.com
Captain's Quarters — www.captainraoul.com

Best Sports Blog
Viva El Birdos

The Judges Say: You claim you're the "world's biggest Cardinals fan," do you? Well, do you read Viva El Birdos? If not, you're an imposter. The unofficial fanboy/sabermetric-geek website of the Cardinals, Viva El Birdos delivers amusing, in-depth coverage of the Redbirds that can't be found elsewhere. And a fan base? To quote Harry Caray, "Holy cow!" It's hard to find a post on Viva El Birdos with fewer than 200 comments from its dedicated readers. Disclaimer: Aaron Schafer and Dan Moore of Viva El Birdos are frequent contributors to Riverfront Times.

Cards Diaspora — www.cardsdiaspora.com
BlackSportsOnline — www.blacksportsonline.com
JoeSportsFan — www.joesportsfan.com

Best Arts Blog
Temporary Art Review

The Judges Say: This beautiful site, a project of the Luminary Center for the Arts, features in-depth essays, interviews and criticism of the contemporary arts scene both in St. Louis and across the nation. A treasure trove of information with gorgeous slideshows to boot, Temporary Art Review has established itself as a must-read for the St. Louis arts community.

ReviewSTL — www.reviewstl.com
St. Louisan — www.stlouisan.com
Saint Louis Art Map — www.saintlouisartmap.org

Best Political Blog

The Judges Say: So many independent blogs out there favor one political party or push a solitary agenda. That's fine. But what makes PoliticMo so unusual is that it is completely nonpartisan and features honest-to-God reporting on Missouri politics. All the more impressive is that this site competes in coverage quantity and quality with some of the biggest newspapers in the state — and is written and edited by a nineteen-year-old college student.

Next Page »