Voting begins soon for the annual Best of Denton designation showcasing local businesses selected by readers as their favorites.
Best of Denton, which began more than 20 years ago as a special edition of the Denton Record-Chronicle, continues to grow as more voters cast their ballots each year. Last year, more than 6,263 ballots were cast for local businesses in such categories as automotive, food and restaurants, healthy living, services and more.
Voting in this year’s reader’s choice contest, featuring 10 categories and at least 117 subcategories, begins Feb. 1 and continues through March 2. Voters can find the ballot link at www.DentonRC.com beginning Saturday.
However, the voting will be a little different this year.
Instead of asking readers to recall favored businesses from memory, the new online voting system provides a list of possible choices gleaned from prior nominations, yet still leaves room for write-ins. The idea is to make voting easier and more efficient for all who participate.
In the more than two decades of voting, a number of businesses have remained among the top choices for Denton residents, garnering first and second places for several consecutive years for everything from offering great customer service to consistently meeting customers’ needs.
For instance, Mr. Chopsticks — a well-known eatery near the University of North Texas — has retained its top ranking as best Asian dining for eight years in a row. For owner Chai Tamprateep, the annual designation is meaningful. Other longterm winners include James Woods Autopark, Frenchy Rheault and DATCU, to name a few.
“Thank you, Dentonites, for voting for us,” Tamprateep said last year. “It makes me feel really honored.”
Others have only recently made the top choices in their categories — garnering bragging rights for the full year complete with a banner proclaiming their win.
The concept, says DRC advertising director Sandra Hammond, was born from a desire to help the local business community.
“We saw the idea and believed this to be a great way to promote local businesses to our readers, the voters and those not in our area who might not be familiar with the strong local business base here in Denton,” Hammond said.
The Best of Denton publication, which features stories about each of the first-place winners, will be published on April 18. The publication serves as a guide to reader’s favorite businesses across all spectrums of services, eateries and much more. It is also posted online and is distributed in the newspaper and during the annual Arts & Jazz Festival, which attracts 100,000-plus visitors each year.
The new online voting format also allows opportunities for sponsoring categories both at general and hyperlocal category levels. Winners also have the opportunity to promote their win with a plaque and banner. For information, call the advertising department at 940-566-6858.
Anyone with questions about the contest or categories can e-mail DRC marketing director Amanda Crocker at firstname.lastname@example.org.
DAWN COBB can be reached at 940-566-6879 and viaTwitter @DawnCobbDRC.