The North Grenville Times hosted a party at Catered Affairs on November 15 to celebrate 10 years in business as a community newspaper. Combined with eight years publishing a community newsletter, owners David Shanahan and Marguerite (Maggie) Boyer have been serving North Grenville for 18 years!
The party was a social affair, with drinks flowing and appetizers sizzling. Many invited guests attended the occasion, including years worth of contributors and advertisers who have all helped in one form or another to make the Times into what it is today. Having been with the paper for only a year and a half, I was excited to be able to finally meet many of the people who “built” the NG Times.
Many readers probably don’t realize the work and sheer number of contributors required to make a community newspaper successful. One face I met at the party was Amery Boyer, Maggie’s sister who fills in as the paper’s Copy Editor from time-to-time. I had no idea that she is, in fact, the Mayor of a small Nova Scotia town called Annapolis Royal! Another person I was glad to meet was John Baldwin, writer of the “Baldwin’s Birds” column. I regret not getting a chance to tell John about a conversation I had with a 10-year-old girl last year at the elementary school where I work. This girl told me how much she enjoys reading Baldwin’s Birds. Keeping young people interested in print news is something to be very proud of!
Someone else I got to meet was Maggie’s son, Michael, who I learned was instrumental in helping the newspaper in its early days, particularly with setting up the website. And of course it was nice to put so many faces to names that I see frequently in emails.
A party is perhaps only as good as the food served, and for the magnificent spread we enjoyed on November 15, we must thank both Erick Le Pors from Dial-A-Chef, as well as Natalie and the rest of the staff from Catered Affairs. I am not at all embarrassed to say that I went up for food two (or maybe three) times. I heard throughout the evening about the reputation they both share for their generosity in the community, great food and friendly service, and I can’t say I am at all surprised. Absolutely delicious! One face my wife and I were thrilled to see was that of the party’s bartender, Lily, a kind-hearted soul and master of hospitality who also bartended at our wedding. My list of shout outs is not meant to be exhaustive – I enjoyed speaking with absolutely everyone!
One of the most moving parts of the evening was David talking with me about the support the paper has received from countless local advertisers over the years. Advertising is a wise marketing move for any business, but the beauty of small towns is that advertising in the local paper means one small business is supporting another.
Now that the party is over, we will continue to do what we always have – provide quality local news and stories that keep the community happy and connected. As I heard many people at the party say – here’s to the next 10 years!