ST. GEORGE — Amid the breathtaking scenery of Southern Utah are unique shopping locales, premier restaurants and a wide variety of businesses all vying to position themselves as local favorites. But only an elite few can win the right to call themselves “The Best of Southern Utah.”
Nominations for this year’s Best of Southern Utah contest, presented by St. George News, Canyon Media and title sponsor Vasion, are set to begin online Feb. 1 and continue through Feb. 17. Whether you’re an owner, an employee, a customer or a fan, this is your opportunity to let your voice be heard.
“As a leading software company in Southern Utah and the employer of over 100 tech workers in the St. George area, Vasion (formerly PrinterLogic) is proud to be a sponsor of Best of Southern Utah 2021,” said Garrett Helmer, chief marketing officer at Vasion. “We are strong supporters of the ongoing economic development happening in this area and are excited to see organizations like Canyon Media promote business and entrepreneurship.”
Ben Lindquist, general manager of Canyon Media, said that this year’s contest celebrates local businesses that have endured, innovated and found new and better ways to serve their customers. Small businesses in particular play a critical role in the community, and 2020 presented extraordinary challenges for many.
“We’re all connected in one way or another to a small business, whether it’s people we know that work for them or people that own them,” he said. “This is the year that we’re going to do everything we can to help these small businesses.”
Lindquist said that the Best of Southern Utah website has undergone significant upgrading ahead of this year’s contest, making it easier than ever for Southern Utahns to nominate and vote for their favorite businesses. Voting will begin Feb. 22 and run through March 8.
Gold and silver award winners will be crowned in 10 consolidated categories:
- Activities and Entertainment
- Business and Services
- Food and Beverage
- General Services
- Home and Garden
- Lifestyle and Beauty
- Vehicles and Services.
Winners will be published online and in the Best of Southern Utah magazine on June 7.
Along with showcasing the winners, the magazine is designed to serve as a guidebook for both locals and visitors seeking the very best that the area has to offer.
Canyon Media will manage production and publication of the magazine again this year. Lindquist highlighted the time and energy that his design and writing teams have contributed to building a first-class publication.
“The thing we’re most proud of is the magazine,” he said. “We believe that we’ve produced the finest magazine in all of Southern Utah and one of the best in the state, if not the best.”
Shane Brinkerhoff, director of news operations for St. George News, said he is particularly proud of the design, layout and distribution effort. So far, a total of 15,000 copies of the 2020 edition have been distributed throughout Southern Utah.
“We’ve just had nothing but great feedback on the magazine in general, and we’re really excited about this year’s,” he said.
Brinkerhoff added that he is excited to partner with Vasion, a leading technology company in Southern Utah, to bring even more visibility to this year’s contest.
“We’re extremely excited to have Vasion as our title sponsor this year,” he added. “We’re glad to have them affiliated with our 2021 contest, which recognizes the best businesses in Southern Utah.”
Now in its third year, Best of Southern Utah continues to grow in popularity and participation. The inaugural contest received over 270,000 votes. In 2020, the community submitted roughly 1,300 nominations across 197 categories and cast more than 500,000 votes to determine the winners.
Brinkerhoff said he expects to see even greater turnout for 2021.
“Every year, we try to make enhancements and continue to make it even better,” he said. “We’re really excited about this year.”
Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.