The Cincinnati alt-weekly is celebrating its 10-year anniversary this week and marks the occasion with a special section that reflects upon some of the paper's noteworthy journalistic achievements -- from saving the life of an innocent man on Death Row to shining a light on a local daily's forfeiture of editorial control to the Chiquita banana company. "Fawning over ourselves with an anniversary issue makes me uncomfortable," co-publisher and editor John Fox writes. "But 10 years of being the liberal voice in a conservative town is something to celebrate."

Continue ReadingCincinnati CityBeat Hits Double-Digits

During its 25 years, the Oklahoma Gazette has evolved "from a monthly preservation newsletter with a skeleton staff of volunteers to the third-largest newspaper in the state," Preston Jones writes. A timeline highlights some memorable events in the paper's history. Gazette reporters did award-winning coverage of the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in 1995, then attracted the attention of the national media and FBI after staff writer Phil Bacharach struck up a correspondence with convicted bomber Timothy McVeigh. This year, publisher Bill Bleakley led an effort to get a painting of singer Woody Guthrie hung in the State Capitol. Bleakley says the Gazette will continue its mission of being an independent voice that addresses all the issues of the day.

Continue ReadingOklahoma Gazette Turns 25

For its 25th anniversary issue, Palo Alto Weekly is examining how the community and its people have changed since the paper debuted on Oct. 11, 1979. In the past quarter-century, Palo Alto has become known as the birthplace of Silicon Valley, and its cultural and economic landscape has changed considerably. To illustrate this, the weekly is revisiting neighborhoods it first profiled in its 10th anniversary issue, and profiling two new neighborhoods as well.

Continue ReadingPalo Alto Weekly Reflects Upon 25 Years

AAN launched a new Web site this week providing links and summaries to some of the most interesting stories in its 122 member papers. debuted on Wednesday with a collection of 100 stories on the economy, politics and social issues, as well as movies, music, books and other arts and entertainment. The site's primary goal is to allow AAN editors to exchange articles and ideas. But it's also a place where readers will discover many more of the same type of intriguing and provoking stories they've found featured in's This Week in Alternative Weeklies section.

Continue Debuts This Week

Following an industry trend, the Arizona alt-weekly went down to 25 inches wide, from 27. At the same time it rearranged sections and added more music coverage, editor Jimmy Boegle announces in a special anniversary issue. Although columnists will be allotted 150 to 200 fewer words, the theory that readers don't like longer articles is "full of crap," Boegle says, and word counts in most news and arts stories will remain the same. AAN associate member Katherine Topaz of Topaz Design did the redesign.

Continue ReadingTucson Weekly Whittles Off a Few Inches As It Turns 20

The fifth alternative newsweekly founded in the U.S. began as the Orange Pennysaver in 1969 and took its present name the next year in recognition of the end of old established times and the birth of a new counterculture era. The paper risked being shut down in 1984 but was rescued when the current publisher, a Syracuse-area businessman named Art Zimmer, bought it in part as a vehicle to publish his skiing column. The paper celebrates its anniversary with an airy new design and an overview of the paper's history.

Continue ReadingSyracuse New Times Celebrates 35th Anniversary with Redesign

After getting fired from Larry Flynt's L.A. Free Press, Jay Levin founded L.A. Weekly and put out the first issue on Dec. 7, 1978. Seed money came from several investors, including actor-producer Michael Douglas. In an interview with Kristine McKenna for the paper's 25th anniversary edition, Levin recalls the grueling early days when the L.A. Weekly was undercapitalized and then grew rapidly. The paper, now owned by Village Voice Media, had a strong emphasis on international as well as local news and was more progressive than it is today, Levin says. But rumors that the office was a hotbed of drug abuse and interoffice sex are wildly exaggerated.

Continue ReadingL.A. Weekly Founder Recalls Its Progressive Past

And they're celebrating with a special issue and a public birthday bash in a park across the street from the paper's new office building. In addition to a rear-view mirror look at the paper's coverage of educational and environmental issues, this week's Indy includes features like "Top Ten Reasons the Independent Must Die" (No. 4: "They're sex-crazed, amoral sodomists.") and, for connoisseurs of the publisher's occasionally garbled syntax, "Top Ten John Weissisms" (No. 1: "We're growing like hotcakes!").

Continue ReadingColorado Springs Independent Turns 10

Eric Broder, managing editor at the Cleveland Free Times, which turns 10 this week, remembers a time when the paper could hardly fill ad space. "The issue is 24 pages, consisting mainly of editorial. You don't want that. You want ads in there, and plenty of 'em. But this was the first issue. It's tough enough to sell ad space for a publication, and tougher yet for one that doesn't exist." Broder reflects on the last decade of a paper that was one business deal away from never happening.

Continue ReadingCleveland Free Times Turns 10