Yuma's Best has come a long way
As Christmas 1998 approached, a colleague and I brainstormed about ideas to make the Yuma Sun more fun to read, and Yuma's Best was born.
Now, 14 years later, the 2011 version is in Wednesday's newspaper and online.
Needless to say, a lot has changed since that first year. For example, some of the inaugural winners are no longer around, like Bella Vita (best Italian restaurant), Baskin-Robbins (ice cream), California Bakery (dessert) and Famous Sam's (sports bar).
Then, too, Stan's (breakfast burrito) is among the few that have won every year since the contest's inception.
Also, there were 66 categories in 1998. Today, 153.
It was easy to count the first-year votes. The second year, however, the number skyrocketed. I sat in my garage for three days, buried in ballots, tabulating the results. The third year, the advertising department took it over, and needless to say, I didn't argue.