Welcome to the Weekend…

Published 8:11 pm Friday, June 19, 2009

The subscriber told a familiar story on Friday. “I live out … way out,” she said. “And I normally don’t get to read my Sunday paper until I get home from work on Monday evening.”

But this time, her story had a happy ending.

“When I read today that we’re going to get our Sunday paper on Saturday, I couldn’t wait to come in and sign back up … plus I get these gold coins.”

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She left happy, with a few extra dollars in her pocket thanks to our ongoing circulation promotion.

And that’s a good feeling.

The decision to switch to a Weekend edition of The Messenger wasn’t made lightly. We discussed and debated, studied and considered, but ultimately we decided it was in the best interest of serving our customers. And I suspect it’s going to be a smart move.

Given the geography of Pike County, home delivery to all our subscribers isn’t feasible. We’ve relied on the U.S. Postal Service to provide “same-day” mail delivery to many of our subscribers for years. And, with the increasing costs of doing business these days as well as continued service issues in some areas, we found the mail delivery to be the most efficient and cost-effective way to get the paper to some customers. Except for that pesky problem of Sundays.

So we solved it … by revamping our paper to be a Weekend edition, with expanded content, printed and distributed on Saturday mornings.

You’ll still find your favorite features in the Sunday edition:

The County Roads section with Jaine Treadwell’s column and feature stories, Wedding and Engagement news, school news and more.

An expanded Sports section, with rec league coverage in our Good Sports section, in-depth sports features; and, what I’m most excited about, next-day coverage of Friday night prep action. That means you can turn to the pages of The Messenger to read about your favorite high school football team on Saturday mornings for complete game coverage, including stories and photos (as well as turn to our websites, www.troymessenger.com and www.picturepike.com for live coverage throughout Friday nights) instead of having to wait until Sunday mornings to see the print edition coverage.

A revamped main news section, featuring weekly in-depth focus stories; a refreshed community calendar page; previews of the weekend’s activities; tie-ins and reminders to what we’ll be covering live on the website that weekend; local commentary and opinion; and plenty of news about the people, events and happenings that affect our lives right here in Pike County.

An expanded comics section, including the addition of a Sudoku puzzle.

And, of course, all the advertising, circulars and supplements that round out The Messenger. Our advertisers are excited about the Weekend edition, as well, since many are open on Saturdays for local shoppers. Be sure to look inside each week for listings of special savings and promotions local merchants are offering on Saturdays.

And, thanks to the growth of our online edition, we’ll be able to provide coverage of news and sports events, including game action and breaking news, live throughout the weekend at www.troymessenger.com, as well as plenty of photo galleries and pictures from community events at www.picturepike.com.

Of course, change doesn’t always come easily, and there may be a few bumps along the way. But I hope you’ll be patient with us and, as always, tell us what you like and don’t like as we craft our new Weekend edition.

Now, folks like our subscriber who lives “way out” won’t have to wait until Monday to read her Sunday paper. She can read her Weekend edition on Saturday morning; or Saturday afternoon; or even on Sunday morning …whenever the mood strikes her. But my guess is she won’t wait until Monday night.

Stacy Graning is publisher of The Messenger. She can be reached via email at stacy.graning@troymessenger.com