Wonderful Weeklies  | American Journalism Review
 AJR  Letters
From AJR,   December/January 2008

Wonderful Weeklies   

Ted Gup's story about the weekly Enterprise in Bucksport, Maine (Drop Cap, October/November), was a delightful read, especially because it reminded me of my local weekly, the Almanac. The paper covers Menlo Park, Atherton, Woodside and Portola Valley so well that I told Managing Editor Richard Hine that if I were ever forced to subscribe to only one paper, the New York Times and the San Jose Mercury News might be in some bad spots.

Ted Bache
Menlo Park, California

It was with a strong sense of recognition, not to mention enjoyment, that we read Ted Gup's article. Working at another small-town Maine newspaper, the Original Irregular in Kingfield, affords us many of the same experiences as Don Houghton and his Enterprise. Not only can residents expect to be in our paper on a regular basis, but if they haven't been, many let us know that it's about time. The Irregular has actually run "find the missing punctuation" spots in the past (before my time). And most of our readers also read it front to back, picking it apart at informal morning gatherings in local eateries throughout our coverage area. In our pages readers can find pleas for the return of lost canes and missing pets, or an update on the local "Flamingo Wars" in which certain neighbors try to outdo one another festooning their yards with pink flamingoes.

I'm sure it's not just small-town Maine newspapers that share these and similar experiences, but simply small-town papers in general, because such entities serve to strengthen the connections in communities by sharing all neighbors' ups and downs.

Incidentally, our motto is, "Serving the Western Mountains of Maine Where the Kids Grow Straight and Tall and the Women are All Good Looking." Thanks for a delightful article.

Bob Gray



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