…..Finally, just as the sun came out and the temperatures warmed we received news from Governor Justice that the mask mandate had been lifted for those who had been vaccinated. Has the air ever smelled so fresh or the grass and trees been so green? Or have my senses ever been so aware of the miracle of nature?
….We’ve been inundated with events being scheduled for this summer from concerts to the Riverfest. Send us all your events and we’ll feature them in our new online edition. People are eager to get outside and enjoy entertainment and their friends and neighbors so I would predict record turnouts. We’re thinking of devoting a whole page to those events over the summer. What do you think? I’m ready to see people and enjoy our hometowns once again.
….The only constant is change and in this edition we’re announcing a big change. Beginning with the June 3rd edition we will transition our weekly newspaper from print to totally online. Shannon and I have been contemplating converting totally to a digital edition for quite some time. We launched our online edition nine months ago and I’m impressed at how easy the conversion was and how effective the online version is. It’s easy to navigate and provides a great way to get your news. Shannon saw how quickly our Facebook Hometown News page grew so when we launched the ability to get the very same news and photos to you in a nanosecond just made sense to her.
…..The lead time needed to produce a printed edition off site has made it difficult for us to be current and I often had to tell someone who sent a press release to us of an upcoming event, “Sorry, our deadline is passed.” I also had to consider how I read my daily news? I subscribe to the three local daily newspapers but only the online edition. I prefer to read my news online so why wouldn’t our subscribers. As a self-professed “news junkie” I also read many state and national newspapers. But, while I used to wait to hear the Wheeling newspaper hit the front porch in the morning when I lived in New Cumberland, I now log on with my computer and cup of coffee to read my news. I don’t have to wait for the newspaper delivery person. I don’t have to depend on the U.S. Mail (which is pretty fickle as many of you well know). My news is there when I want it. As a baby boomer, it works for me. As a subscriber, I’m confident it will work for you.
…..We’re going on 7 years of publication in August so this seems like to perfect time to convert. We did our homework and discovered that nationally 21 percent of readers get their news digitally and that number is growing fast. We have found that as our mailing subscriber list has grown, the amount of time to label, separate by zip and lug the newspaper bags to the post offices has become beyond cumbersome for me. I am a writer and what started as a part time gig has grown to encompass more and more of my life than I had intended, leaving little time to focus on writing my column and researching things of interest to me and our readers. Quite simply, we need a schedule we can control not one that controls us.
…..……How will it work? We are very sensitive to the fact that you pay for a year’s subscription therefore you are owed a year’s subscription. The remainder of your subscription will convert to the digital site. The only action you have to take is to send your e-mail and the month your subscription expires to [email protected]. You can then access your online edition at
……We are contacting our advertisers to explain how they can get their message out and increase their visibility through our on-line version.
….But, we know that some of you may not have a computer or want to read their paper in that manner, If that is you, simply send us a note with your name and address and the amount of time remaining on your subscription and we will issue you a pro-rated refund.
…….In coming weeks, we’re excited about the expanded news and features we will be able to bring you. It’s a new and exciting endeavor for Hometown News and we’re looking forward to offering you an enhanced edition each week.