As part of the annual Feed Your Mind, Feed a Family campaign, representatives from the Brattleboro Reformer and New England Newspapers -- myself included -- went to the Brattleboro Hannaford Wednesday afternoon to purchase 50 boxed meals and 50 turkeys to donate to the Brattleboro Area Drop-In Center.
The campaign, which takes place toward the end of each year, takes a portion of our subscription sales and uses it to buy boxed meals through Hannaford and the local Project Feed the Thousands campaign, for local families in need. [Read more about the effort, here. *link to come*]
UPDATE: Here's more on the effort via Tout:
The Reformer newsroom was lucky enough to have Steve Buttry, director of community engagement & social media with Digital First Media, visit the offices today. I hope the reporters got so new ideas on how to better utilize the many social media resources available to become better journalist. (And, of course, we all use these tools to better serve the readers and community at large.)
Here he discusses the live chat tool ScribbleLive.
Here's my favorite 9/11-related editorial cartoon, drawn by the always-excellent Bill Day.
Point of full disclosure: This right here is one of my favorite photographs of all time. Notice any similarities?
Learn more about the above photograph, here.
Several months ago, word came that the typical means we had at posting local photos online would be "going away."
Since that time, there's been several projects and upheavals in the Reformer's "photo department" (as quaint as it is). Previous photo editor Zach Stephens and I began a massive project of digitizing all our of our electronic photo archives on a dedicated hard drive. As simple as it sounds, it was actually quite a time-consuming process, as many photos either existed only on burned CD or DVD, or online, or in some corner of a server in the newsroom. (Sadly, several months later this is still, very much, a work in progress.)
Then, Mr. Stephens announced he would be leaving the Reformer. Since then (as I've blogged about in the past), I created a new position to replace him -- Multimedia Editor -- and have since been working on several other projects with the newest member of the newsroom, Kayla Rice.
Well, no longer. Reformer photographs are now available to look at and purchase via the online tool SmugMug -- MNG-nenivt.smugmug.com/. This site will be shared between the Brattleboro Reformer and sister-papers in Vermont, the Bennington Banner and Manchester Journal.
In addition, we will also be building slideshows from various assignments and presenting them in the Media Center at Reformer.com. In addition to local slideshows, there you will also have access to national and international photos on a variety of topics, generated by our Digital First Media partners.
This is obviously a welcome addition to our recently redesigned website, but I'm also happy to get local photos back online, where they can be used to enhance our coverage, or tell their own stories.
Here's a quick image I first shared on Twitter, of most of the folks who showed up to march under the Reformer banner during Brattleboro's Fourth of July parade. I good time was had by all!
(For those wondering, from left, that's day editor Bob Audette taking pictures, reporter Dom Poli, sports reporter Dave Aquino and arts editor Jon Potter. Driving the blue Mustang in the backgroup is sales manager Jordan Brechenser, with online sales manager Josh Unruh. I'm, of course, taking the picture. And, not in the photo, circulation director Chris Karluk was driving a Reformer van.)
It's an honor (despite the high temperatures) to be invited to march in this year's Fourth of July parade in Brattleboro (especially apropos as the paper continues to celebrate its 100th year of "delivering the news").
Update: Now with a photo from the staging area!
I took this photo of the cemetery across the street from the Brattleboro Reformer offices on Black Mountain Road -- to act as a companion piece (if nothing else) reminding folks that, in addition to cook-outs and parades and family fun, there's a serious undertone to the holiday as well:
Enjoy the day!
I recently received about 20 letters to the editor from a group of local students (sixth-graders!), on a wide range of topics -- from civics to crime to drug abuse.
We have a great social studies teacher at the Brattleboro high school, and so I'm used to getting well-thought-out guest opinion pieces from some of his older students. But to see students this young not only exercising thought on topics a lot of kids aren't thinking about, but then choosing to share those thoughts with the rest of the community via the daily, local newspaper .... well, it's a humbling experience.
I look forward to the next batch.
On March 1, the Reformer's 100th anniversary was recognized at the newspaper's offices on Black Mountain Road. There was a live remote of Live & Local with Steve West, which broadcasts on 1490AM in the Brattleboro Area. Just after noon, there was a cake cutting ceremony; I and the publisher, Ed Woods, said a few words to a group of guests from the community.
It was an honor to be a part of such an event, and to speak to the group. Here's a few photos from the day: