The Baltimore Sun was named Newspaper of the Year — and recognized as having the best website among the competitors — Friday in the annual Maryland-Delaware-D.C. Press Association awards contest.

The Sun has been chosen Newspaper of the Year six times in the past seven years. The Washington Post won the award in 2008.

The Sun won 51 first- or second-place awards in the editorial contest among daily papers with a circulation of 75,000 or more; The Post won 13; The News Journal, based in Wilmington, Del., won 11.

Twelve of the Sun's 27 first-place award winners were also considered Best in Show, meaning they were superior to the first-place winners from the five other circulation divisions. The Sun's coverage of the Preakness and Tropical Storm Lee both garnered Best in Show designations for sports and weather articles, respectively.

The Sun also won three second-place awards for page design and art illustration among daily newspapers.

The Sun's first-place editorial winners (Best in Show winners are designated with an asterisk):

•General website excellence: Sun staff, for*

•Editorial: Peter Jensen, for "The hero of Baltimore," about former Mayor William Donald Schaefer.

•Local column, critical thinking: Jean Marbella, for "Baltimore celebrates Schaefer, and itself."

•Spot news: Justin Fenton, Peter Hermann and Julie Scharper, for "17 city officers charged in broad towing scandal."

•General news story: Childs Walker, for "Best friends, forever," about two servicemen who died in action and were buried next to each other.*

•Continuing coverage: Justin Fenton, Peter Hermann and Scott Calvert, for coverage of the Select Lounge shooting

•Feature story, profile: Mary Carole McCauley, for "Last dance," about the retirement of the Baltimore School for the Arts' director.

•Local government: Scott Calvert and Timothy B. Wheeler, for "City loses lead-paint funding."

•Weather, natural disasters: Sun staff, for coverage of Tropical Storm Lee

•General news photo: Algerina Perna, for "For Guard soldiers, an emotional sendoff."

•Spot news photo: Karl Merton Ferron, for "Empty Ocean City 'dodges a bullet,'" a photo capturing the resort town's experience with Hurricane Irene.*

•Feature photo: Karl Merton Ferron, for "Up, up and away," a photo of preparations for an air show.

•Sports photo: Kenneth K. Lam, for "Now, this is how you do it," from the Ravens' first practice of the season.

•Sports story: Sun staff, for coverage of the Preakness.*