Three new staff writer hires also announced.
The staff of the St. Louis alt-weekly was unable to attend when the three-year old, River Front Times, made his debut March 18 at Fairmount Park. "If we'd been able to go, I'm convinced we would have cheered him on to victory," Editor Tom Finkel tells AAN News. "But we also probably would have bet the odds down and no one would have made any money." Former staff writer and racing aficionado Mike Seely convinced the horse's owner to change his name from Pollys Jaybird last year as long as the paper paid the $100 name-registration fee. The staff is planning to attend River Front Times' next race in full force. "As usual, the hopes of our company ride on a longshot," adds Andy Van de Voorde, executive associate editor for Village Voice Media.
The cover of the Oct. 13 edition of Riverfront Times features an aerial photograph of 57 naked women arranged to form a peace sign -- an image meant to bring attention to an antiwar arts event in St. Louis, Mo., called "Peace Out!" According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, several businesses have removed copies of the alt-weekly from display shelves -- and at least one did so after a visit from local police. Riverfront Times editor Tom Finkel says, "We put it out there knowing it was a provocative image, but never in my wildest dreams would I have thought that a police department would take actions to remove the publication from a newsstand."
Tom Finkel, editor of City Pages (Twin Cities) until mid-2002, returns to his hometown of St. Louis and to New Times as the new editor of Riverfront Times. He replaces Jim Nesbitt. Before taking the position to Minneapolis, Finkel was managing editor of Miami New Times. "I'm thrilled to be able to move back to my hometown and be a part of the Riverfront Times," Finkel says. He starts March 3.
Publisher Mark Bartel of City Pages (Twin Cities) has fired Editor Tom Finkel because they disagreed on whether the paper should change direction, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports. Finkel came to City Pages in 1997 from Miami New Times. "I don't want to play this like Tom and I have been butting heads for 4 1/2 years; I really like Tom," Bartel tells the daily. "I just felt like I wanted the editorial to take more chances, to be edgier."