Another year has come and gone. A year we’re all pretty happy to see Gone!
When COVID-19 hit in March, I thought it might be the last year of my 40-year newspaper career. After all, I was not about to go back into debt and I have been hankering for retirement for a few years.
I received a rather blunt suggestion the other day that I may have reached my ‘retirement age’ when my new driver’s license came in the mail! Even they think I’m getting old – it’s got my birth date scrolled across the back of a dinosaur skeleton!
But alas, newspapers are an essential service and as easy as it would have been to lock the door and retire, I still enjoy going to work. I had lots of staff to think about as well! They don’t have dinosaur skeletons on their licenses yet!!
So, we all buckled down and tried to figure out ways of maintaining our regular publishing schedule as much as possible. With lots of ideas and assistance, we are still here!
What was most encouraging is the way the staff and the press eased some of the financial burdens. It was much appreciated and we were able to bring other staff back on board later in the year. Others have chosen to move on and we wish them the best.
If it wasn’t for the federal government’s wage subsidy, I would have had no choice but to close the doors as advertising and flyer revenues had all but dried up over night. I also spent a great deal of time applying for various grants, although they weren’t substantial, every little bit helped.
We came up with ideas for replacing our regular advertising revenue and our faithful clients helped. For example, those who could supported our Kid’s page for the couple of months when our small readers were confined to their homes in the spring.
A few municipalities got on board with the sponsor page and support-request and I must thank especially the Village of Alix and County of Stettler. Other municipalities, when the opportunity arose, did and still do support the Review with advertising.
Then there were 52 of our readers who got on board with the ‘symbolic subscription’ and some just sent us a cheque telling us how much they enjoyed getting the ECA Review and they did not want to see it go by the wayside.
The warm feelings of encouragement brought from the response to these two initiatives was overwhelming! Thank you. Thank you. I hope everyone who helped in anyway knows how much we appreciated every little effort.
All in all, 2020 turned out to be a year of encouragement – to keep moving forward! So, here’s to 2021 and the desire to have the ECA Review reaching homes in east central Alberta even through this publisher’s “dinosaur era”!!
Wishing all the best in 2021 to our many, many clients and readers. We are thrilled to be able to continue to bring your services and product advertisements and the local news to your mailbox.