One Year And Counting….
By Ken DeLaat Publisher/Editor
Near North Now reaches a milestone today.
It was a year ago when we launched our news site with hopes of bringing timely, relevant, and entertaining articles to this wonderful region.
The reason we chose that day to begin this journey had to do with two rather important school elections being held in Newaygo and White Cloud. We wanted the community to know about the results as soon as possible and perhaps get a few words from those involved.
Both proposals passed.
N3 was at The Stream with a group of supporters for the Newaygo effort and recorded the celebratory and much relieved reaction from the group who believed strongly in the need for a new school and...
...thanked the voters who turned out to support it. Later that night we spoke with Barry Seabrook from White Cloud who echoed his appreciation for the voters who responded to the school’s needs.
And then we sent out our first issue.
That week, one of our ongoing contributors Charles Chandler provided us with his initial offering, a piece on the celebration surrounding the completion of the new White Cloud airport terminal.
Our first sports report involved the Grant tennis team facing North Muskegon and Hesperia's softballers going up against Kent City.
We saw the beginning of the relationship between Megan Wirts and an ever growing cadre of fans when her 'Megan Again column graced our feature section for the first time and we found out how important groceries are to our readers when Marianne Boerigter’s story on Meijer’s plans to build in Fremont caught social media fire and shot our numbers through the roof.
Since that first week we have covered hundreds of stories, reported throughout a contentious primary election, reviewed restaurants, movies, books, concerts and plays, greatly expanded our coverage of high school sports and delivered information from a large number of sources throughout the community. We’ve conveyed the goings on in our parts, promoted and reported on the festivals that enrich our towns, and helped spread the word about the many healthy initiatives undertaken locally. Our pages have been host to feature stories, columns, guest articles, commentaries and letters to the editor.
We have welcomed more contributors to our talented troupe including Alexis Mercer who just completed a wonderfully written book review and can deliver a sports story in a way that makes you feel you had a ticket to the game, Mollie Jo Swendrowski our resident Disneyphile with a flair for compelling stories and Mike Gesler who captured the magic of the FHS production of “Grease’ at the Dogwood stage in the same manner as he did the intense rivalry between teams during the Grant/Newaygo showdown on the basketball court.
And most importantly our readership continues to grow, a factor that we hope speaks to the quality of our content.
It is our goal to continue to evolve and provide the greater community, including the number of readers who are part time residents and our frequent visitors, with a place to access information on what is happening. To offer a news site that serves to ‘engage, enlighten, entertain and encourage dialogue’.
And, as always, we welcome your suggestions and ideas on how to best meet that goal.
This has been quite a year and as symmetry would have it, last night we celebrated our birthday eve by posting the results of two important school elections.
And once again they resulted in a pair of Yes votes.
We thank you for joining us on this journalistic journey and hope you continue to enjoy the ride.
We’ve got a feeling the best is yet to come.
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