Publisher’s Letter: Our Newspaper and Reader Response

Blaine Howerton and his sons, 2021 (Photo by Blaine Howerton)
By Blaine Howerton, Publisher
North Forty News

We often receive reader feedback, both positive and negative. I am grateful for that as it means that folks in communities throughout Northern Colorado are reading our newspaper!

With our focus on “solution-driven” journalism sometimes our content may seem “mild” — by that I mean that some of our articles could have more personality, even written in the first person. You may have noticed a shift in a few of our recent articles and it’s intentional. But when it comes to politics, complex community issues, or anything where our readers need to make an informed decision, based on facts, we make every effort to “center” our reporting, providing both sides of the issue. And if one side of the issue isn’t available, we publish only the facts.

This leads me to the Publisher‘s Letters.

As with so many people, the pandemic led to a major change in my life circumstances where I needed to make some significant decisions going forward. My two young sons, (whom I have custody of every other week) and I talked about the fun times we spent up on our mountain sanctuary and whether we could make that arrangement a more permanent lifestyle. Living off-grid is challenging and always seems to be a work in progress — there is so much to learn. But we agreed to take it on.

My sons and I couldn’t be happier about the decision we made that made one of the most challenging times in our lives more bearable — so many new adventures to focus on! And as we met each new challenge of living off-grid, I decided to share my journey with our readers and the feedback we have received is that many readers look forward each week to reading the next “installment” perhaps because it may encourage them that they too can face change and uncertainty and master it, no matter how challenging it may seem at first.

As the season transitions into winter, life at 6,300 feet always presents new challenges but living off-grid has reduced my living costs.

And like so many people in these times of Covid and uncertainty, I am struggling. This newspaper takes everything I have to keep it going. Well before the pandemic, 4 years ago before I took it on, the newspaper was about to close and that would have left many towns and rural areas throughout Northern Colorado “news deserts.”

I am grateful for the people in our community who have supported us with their readership, their subscriptions, and their advertising. They are THE reason that North Forty News still exists today. And that includes people who write to us — your feedback helps shape this newspaper.



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