Thursday, September 16, 2010

Los Altos paper thriving at 63

"Today, amid a recession that has closed many businesses nationwide and witnessed the page count of many newspapers shrink month after month, we are happy to report that we are still at a healthy level and doing OK," writes Paul Nyberg, publisher of the Los Altos Town Crier. "Our paid subscribers and our strong base of regular advertisers keep us humming. Advertisers keep advertising because they get results. Readers keep reading because it is about them, their families, their schools, their churches and their city."

The Town Crier is celebrating its 63rd birthday this month. For the last 17 years, the weekly paper has been owned by Nyberg and his wife Liz.

"When we were given an opportunity to buy the paper in March 1993, we jumped at it. For the past 17 years, we have worked at keeping three magic words foremost in mind: local, local, local," Paul Nyberg writes.

The current issue of the Town Crier online includes an essay by Bill Blankenburg, who was editor from 1957 to 1964. He recalled:
    The best days were Tuesdays, when we put the last pages together. The salespeople brought in proofs they’d shown to the grocers, who tried to find out how their competitors were pricing Crisco that week. 
    I sometimes had to take a tiny proof to Mrs. Eberly, a tiny lady who ran a tiny shop just up the street. She would dwell lovingly over a 4-inch ad for bath towels. 
    “Let’s say they are large and fluffy, and change the price to $1.98 or maybe $1.95. What do you think?” she’d ask. 
    I think she liked to have company.

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