Carbondale's community supported, weekly newspaper

Help The Sun rise through the Summer Solstice

Sections: Opinion Published

In this edition of The Sopris Sun, we kick off our Spring 2019 fundraising campaign in the midst of celebrating our 10th year of providing news, views and other information about Carbondale — the town where we rose out of the ashes of the old Valley Journal to keep the idea of local journalism alive and active.

Conceived and created by a dedicated group of local residents — many of whom had prior journalistic experience — The Sun strives to tell its readers all that it can about the lives, interests, actions and hopes of the growing population of our town and its environs.

In keeping with the nonprofit vision of that founding board of locals, we’re once again counting on the support and encouragement of our readers, with the goal of raising $10,000 by the target date of the summer solstice on June 21.

Attentive readers will notice that in the past year or so the paper has seen an almost complete turnover in its personnel, a change in the size of the printed product and a return to the brighter type of newsprint that was used in the paper’s early years.

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That the Sun rises each week as a vital component of the local community is borne out by our annual survey of stories published the previous year.

The 2018 survey, conducted recently by a panel of Sopris Sun board members, staff and helpers, reveals that our connection to the community remains solid, as shown by the 268 stories that appeared in our pages last year about local residents in a wide range of activities.

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In addition to its focus on local happenings, the paper supports other nonprofits by telling their stories (88 such mentions about numerous nonprofits in 2018), as well as featuring the region’s arts community (99 stories).

The future of our community also is not slighted. The youth of Carbondale, who will forge and live through that future, showed up in 116 stories about our schools, 110 stories about kids in general, and 59 stories about sports and athletics — mostly involving youthful players.

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And finally, The Sun fulfills one of the fundamental principles of the news business by providing readers with an understanding of the activities their local, regional, state and even federal governmental agencies are up to, starting with the Carbondale town government (89 stories last year).

For a full accounting of the range and numbers of stories presented in the pages of The Sopris Sun, see our annual report, which will be published in the paper in June. Further evidence of the Sun’s growing vitality and community support can be seen in the paper’s annual budget, which last year grew to more than $328,000.

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It takes a lot of money to put out a paper, and we extend our heartfelt thanks to our advertisers, donors and sponsors for providing most of the financial support that keeps The Sun shining.

And we must also give our thanks to our roster of a dozen Honorary Publishers (so far), listed on each edition’s masthead, whose annual gifts do so much to keep the paper in the black, as well as our one known Legacy Donor.

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In terms of broader recognition of the Sun’s good works, as readers will recall, we earned 13 awards at the 2019 Colorado Press Association awards ceremony. Those accolades are a testament to the hard work, talent and creativity of our staff — Editor Will Grandbois, Ad Executive Carol Fabian, Reporter Megan Tackett, Graphic Designer Ylice Golden and distribution chief Tommy Sands, as well as a stable of about 15 freelance writers and photographers.

That comes to at least 20 of your friends and neighbors who all work like plow horses to come up with the content to fill these pages.

Finally, The Sun is up to about 2,000 sessions per week on its evolving website, which deepens our already strong connection to the readers of roughly 3,500 printed copies that we produce each week.

Again, we want to thank our loyal readers, advertisers and others for their ongoing and indispensable support of this noble little publication.

Make your tax-deductible donation online at soprissun.com or send a check to PO Box 399

Carbondale, CO 81623

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