Photo by Patrick Hendry on Unsplash

The City Paper’s 2020 reader survey contest winner was announced last week, after 1,200 people took the survey at the beginning of the year. To qualify, they answered 28 questions, such as what they liked about the City Paper.

Summerville reader Cindy Kurtz was randomly selected as winner of a $1,000 grand prize originally meant to go toward travel before the coronavirus threatened to put a damper on people’s plans. Fortunately, Kurtz has plans to hold onto the prize money for future travels.

“We were supposed to have gone on a trip in April and May to the U.K., Spain, where my daughter lives, and France,” Kurtz told us. “We hadn’t done anything like that in years and, of course, it was canceled due to COVID. Hopefully, we can get to that in November, but I’m not sure COVID is going to let us do that, to be there for the birth of our grandson.”

Her daughter moved near Barcelona about two years ago together with her husband. Kurtz said she hasn’t been able to make the visit just yet, something she hopes her winnings will help her solve. She also plans to take a chunk out of the prize for a charitable donation to the Lowcountry Food Bank.

“I feel so sorry for so many people and what they’re going through right now — no jobs, no income, heaven help them if they get COVID,” Kurtz lamented. “But, the one thing everybody needs is food. So I think that’s part of what helped push us in this direction — to do what we can to help other people.”

Charleston City Paper Publisher Andy Brack congratulated Kurtz on behalf of the staff.

“We’re tickled Cindy will be able to visit with family in Europe, partially on our dime,” he said. “We appreciate the views she and all of the contest respondents provided. It is helping to make us a better community newspaper and guiding us how to offer more of the kind of high-quality and good news, food, music and arts that people in the Lowcountry crave.”