My 10th Anniversary

I would be remiss if I let October pass by without acknowledging the fact that this month officially marks ten years since I became a professional writer.

It all started because of a daily newspaper in Latrobe!

During my senior year at Saint Vincent College the Latrobe Bulletin’s editorial director, Steve Kittey, contacted me about covering the Ligonier area as a stringer. In October 2003 I started covering local government meetings in the borough and township and eventually started writing some local history features as well. Now some of those stories appear in Ligonier Valley Vignettes, which is a proud culmination of my freelance work.

Although it’s not always easy to juggle a full time job and freelance career (AND get enough sleep), writing for the Latrobe Bulletin has brought me some great opportunities, experiences, friends and love into my life, directly and indirectly.

The Latrobe Bulletin introduced me to the Ligonier Valley, along with many great friends within the community and beyond. It indirectly brought me and Dave together. It was my entry into a career as a professional published author. Thank you for giving me a chance!

So here’s to the next decade! I wonder what it will bring…

The Ligonier Echo celebrates 125 years in print!

Ligonier EchoToday marks the 125th anniversary of the Ligonier Echo – the Ligonier Valley’s hometown newspaper!

The weekly newspaper was first published on September 5, 1888.  It wasn’t the first newspaper in Ligonier (four others preceded it), but it’s been the longest running of those publications. The location of the office has changed over the years, and so has its ownership, but the paper continues to report news from Ligonier every Thursday. Today, the Ligonier Echo is managed by Trib Total Media, which took it over from the Laurel Group. In its early days it was managed for almost 70 years by the Graham family, ever since Professor I.M. Graham became editor and owner in 1890.

Please check out today’s issue of the Ligonier Echo for a special commemorative section celebrating the paper’s anniversary.

I’ve been privileged to write several local history features for the Ligonier Echo during my career, some of which I was able to include in Ligonier Valley Vignettes.  I have to thank Editor Debbie Brehun for the opportunities to write these pieces and the Tribune-Review for permission to reprint them in my book.

I’ve also made a couple of really good friends through the Echo, like my friend Jewels.  Sadly (for me), Jewels has moved onto a wonderful new job opportunity, so I don’t get to see her at my regular meetings in Ligonier any more, but I can see her at lunchtime, since her new office is a short walk away from my day job.

So here’s to 125 more years for the Ligonier Echo and future Ligonier history articles for me to dive into

*Source Consulted:  Shirey, Sally. Images of America: Ligonier Valley. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2001. Print.