Samantha Perry | Community newspapers highlight the power and value of the press | Don’t miss it

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It was the second chore of the morning.

After Grandpa started a coffee pot, someone would walk down the long, winding driveway to pull the morning Bluefield Daily Telegraph out of its classic white box with black lettering.

If we children took on the task, we had to be careful when going back up the mountain. The paper would be stored securely under one arm.

Mom and Grandma loved the coupons and inserts, and didn’t like them strewn all over the road.

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Once home, the diary was shared among the adults. Dad started with the sports section while Grandpa always wanted to read the front page stories. Grandma made no excuse to go straight to the society page.

We weren’t high society by any means, but she liked to read about those who were.

The opinion page, too, was always read and discussed. It was one of the important ways for us to keep abreast of politics and important issues in the region.

Unfortunately, Mom usually didn’t get a chance to flip through the pages before the bacon was fried, the cookies golden brown, and the butter sauce poured into a bowl.

But then she read it cover to cover – OK, maybe not the sports section, but everything else.

Once the adults had finished, the paper was shared among the five children.

As a kid, I started with comics but quickly read Dear Abby.

Of course, we all checked our horoscope, even if we swore it wasn’t “real” or “accurate”.

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As a kid, I also used the Daily Telegraph to find out what adults were talking about when they kicked me out of a room.

“You’re too young to hear about that,” they’d say, then start whispering as soon as I walked out.

I was observant enough to realize that they were discussing bad things that had happened in our community.

Usually it was murder.

I also knew the one source I could go to for all the facts – the Daily Telegraph.

Sneaking around the magazine rack, I picked up the day’s issue and brought it to a private corner.

If the adults stopped me, I always had an answer ready.

“I was reading my horoscope – even though it’s not real.”

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Newspapers are part of the family. For this reason, readers want more from us and expect more from us. And our words, written in a familiar, friendly font, can and do elicit emotional reactions.

Every day our homepage can generate smiles, frowns, gasps or laughs. Readers can be moved to tears by a heartwarming story, or moved to anger – and curse – by the news of rising utility rates.

We report the news of the day. It’s so simple.

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Sunday marks the start of the 82nd celebration of National Newspaper Week.

What does that mean?

This means that despite changes in technology, despite changes in family routines, despite changes in cultural norms that have been upended during a global pandemic, your local newspaper remains a key source of vital information for the community.

Whether it’s full coverage of a murder trial or in-depth details of county and municipal demolition plans, we bring you the news. Good or bad.

Plus sports, opinion, lifestyles, weather, comics, puzzles, Dear Abby and those “unreal” horoscopes.

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What’s black, white and read everywhere?

It’s your local newspaper.

Whether read at the breakfast table on traditional newsprint or on a mobile phone crossing a car park, The Daily Telegraph has evolved into the digital age while maintaining its proven commitment to being the best source of news, sports, entertainment and editorial content. .

And that, really, is the power of the press.

Samantha Perry is the editor of the Daily Telegraph. Contact her at [email protected] Follow her @BDTPerry.

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