If the group of writers, photographers, editors, sales people, graphics designers and office personnel on the cover of this paper look familiar, it's because we used to all be on the staff of The Message for the Week.
With the bankruptcy of Eagle Publications and the Twin Sate Valley Media Network, of which The Message was a part, that paper disappeared on July 10 - along with our jobs! As a staff we felt we had been working hard as a team to make The Message the best weekly in the area. It was with great sadness that we experienced its demise, along with the Eagle Times, The Spectator and The Weekly Flea.
Co-editor Joe Milliken and I were able to keep in constant contact with each other and with all the employees of The Message following the bankruptcy announcement, and to a person we were interested in staying together as a team and creating a new, Southern Vermont and New Hampshire newspaper that would fill the void left by the loss of The Message. A new paper focused on positive local community and business news and events, local sports, the area's terrific arts and entertainment scene, food and lifestyle features.
There were and are all sorts of folks interested in doing the same thing, but we feel we have an advantage. A newspaper is not a name, it is the people who create it and the spirit and attitude that they bring to their work. That's what we have. As a group, we are the soul of what had once been a great community newspaper, and that spirit comes with us.
Where that spirit - and the staff - has gone is here, to The Messenger. Beneath the masthead on the cover we clearly state our purpose to be a "Community News, Sports, Arts, Entertainment and Food" newspaper "for Southern Vermont and New Hampshire." We love this region - its talented people, its rich natural beauty, its close-knit communities and its unique cultural offerings. Every week we promise to pour our hearts into telling this region's stories and keeping our readers advised of as many events as space allows.