First published in 1982, Ridgerunner was founded by Jim Decker, a former member of the high school's English department. He taught an Ozark folklore class as a way to keep the spirit of the Ozarks alive.
Ridgerunner has won first place from the American Scholastic Press Association every year since 1987. This year, it took home an even bigger prize.
"To be able to say that I'm the editor of a nationally recognized publication is a really good thing to have on my resume," says co-editor Laura Grisham.
"It's pretty amazing," adds co-editor Breanna Stirewalt. "Just to know that my small part helped push the magazine to be nationally recognized."
Ridgerunner is now being purchased around the country.
"We're really unique because we focus on the local areas," says Dianna Locke, the current adviser and former staff member from 1987. "It's kids actually writing news articles and their reflecting on their values and our traditions and customs and preserving that."
"We focus more on cultural things and in a day and age where society's become more media and obsessed with how fast we can move," says Grisham. "It's always good to have a magazine that reflects back on culture and takes us back to home."
"I think it brings people closer together because they know more about everyone around them," adds Stirewalt.
The co-editors of the magazine say being a part of this award winning magazine has enhanced their high school career.
"It just gives me an opportunity to work with my peers and get journalism experience," says Grisham.
"It's really awesome experience," adds Stirewalt, "just getting to read all the articles and getting to give my feedback and put my input in."
Ridgerunner magazine now has subscribers in 38 states.
The Fall 2011 edition of Ridgerunner , published by Color Tech Printing, will go on sale the week of December 19. It may be purchased at Aid Downtown Antiques, Book Nook, Time and Talent, or at the high school. The magazine is published in the fall and spring and a subscription is $12.
This year's staff includes Joe Brown, Editor, and writers Abbie Conley, Kelby Czerwonka, Cort Gamblin, Laura Grisham, Adam Kissinger, Holden LaFevers, Brooke Mayfield, Breanna Quinn, Katie Roe, Kassie Roe, Megan Smith, Shelby Smith, Breanna Stirewalt, Ambrosia Thompson, Autumn Tullos, Andrew White, Melissa Whittingham, and Breawna Wilson.