Newspaper to move back to Thursday publication day

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Richard Nixon was president, cigarette ads were banned from television, Greenpeace was founded and the voting age was lowered to 18 as the nation remained mired in an unpopular war in Vietnam.

The year was 1971.

That also was the year when The News-Democrat moved from publishing on Thursdays to Wednesdays.

With no fanfare — not even an announcement in the newspaper — The News-Democrat put out its first Wednesday edition on June 23, 1971. Because nothing was written about the change, we don’t know why the change was made after more than a hundred years of publishing on Thursdays.

Beginning Sept. 19, The News-Democrat will be moving back to Thursdays as its publication day.

We began looking at this as an option earlier in the year when we faced some delivery issues that caused delays in getting papers to readers on Wednesdays. While we resolved those issues, the exercise of looking at a move back to Thursday brought to light many advantages for our readers and advertisers.

I would like to share with you some of these advantages to help you understand why we decided to make this change.

By publishing on Thursday, the news department will be able to provide same-week coverage of Carroll County Fiscal Court, commission meetings from Ghent and Prestonville, and Tuesday-night sporting events. You will no longer have to wait a week for the information you need.

With local elections set for next year, we will be able to provide full results in the Thursday newspaper, rather than having to wait until the next Wednesday to publish them, as we are forced to do with a Wednesday schedule.

The change to Thursdays also eases deadlines for those placing classified or display ads. Currently, the advertising deadline is 9 a.m. Monday. Under the new schedule, we will move that deadline to noon Monday, which will be more customer-friendly and give folks more time to advertise yard sales or place ads to sell that car or home in the current week’s issue.

Not as apparent, but just as important, will be improved deadlines for our special sections, such as the sports, health and community information tabloids. This will allow the news team more time to improve the quality of the coverage these special sections provide to our readers. We hope this element will be clear with the content improvements we will be able to make.

As we move forward with this in an effort to improve The News-Democrat, we are certain we will find other benefits created by this move.

Yes, we may also run across some unexpected challenges, but we stand ready to tackle what may arise and continue to build on the improvements we have put in place to serve you better.

Beginning Sept. 19, look for your newspaper in the mail or on the newsstand every Thursday.

We will deliver the newspapers to the area post offices early on Thursdays so you get it delivered that day, as you do now on Wednesday.

We also will be out early on Thursday mornings to place new issues in stores and in racks.

The team at The News-Democrat appreciates the faith you have put in us as your primary source of news, advertising and information for Carroll County and its communities. As we return to our roots as a Thursday newspaper, we look forward to providing even better coverage of our community.

Jeff Moore is publisher of The News-Democrat and The Trimble Banner.