AY Wins Henry Award


AY Magazine, the state’s premier general interest publication, took home the Henry Award for Media Support on Tuesday, during the 44th annual Arkansas Governor’s Conference on Tourism.

The Henry Award for Media Support is presented each year to a distinguished individual or organization for extraordinary attention to and support of Arkansas’ tourism industry through the use of media.

“AY is Arkansas,” said Vicki Vowell, AY’s founder and CEO. “Every month, we highlight what our great state has to offer, and I believe we do it as good as anybody. Our team and our contributors are dedicated to telling the story of Arkansas.”

It is the second time AY has been awarded the honor since 1988. AY, the state’s largest consumer magazine, will celebrate its 30th anniversary in May.

The Media Support Award was the first given during Tuesday night’s annual Henry Awards Banquet. AY  beat out The Buzz 103.7’s “The Show With No Name” and the Arkansas Travel Channel.

“We’re beyond thrilled about our continual growth over the last year,” said Heather Baker, AY publisher. “We will only get better…  This award is given to the best at showcasing Arkansas, and that includes print, digital, television and radio. There’s only one winner, and I’m proud it’s AY.”

The Henry Awards Ceremony began in 1981, at the seventh annual Arkansas Governor’s Conference of Tourism. Since its inception, the ceremony has been instrumental in gathering together state leaders.

According to event organizers, the Henry Awards honor Henri de Tonti, the man historians consider to be one of the first “Arkansas Travelers.” Tonti, an Italian adventurer, was a trusted friend and lieutenant of the French explorer Sieur de La Salle. After La Salle granted him extensive land and trading concessions in the lower Mississippi River Valley, Tonti sent several men in 1686 to build a trading post near the confluence of the Arkansas and Mississippi rivers. The “Poste de Arkansea,” as it was then called, or Arkansas Post, became the first permanent settlement in the lower Mississippi region and the first center of Arkansas hospitality for the people who passed that way.

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