This blog reports events and interesting tidbits from Rensselaer, Indiana and the surrounding area.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Business After Hours at the Rensselaer Republican

On Thursday evening the Rensselaer Republican hosted a Business After Hours event as a way to celebrate their 150th year anniversary. The attendance was much better than it has been at some of the recent Business After Hours events.

The Rensselaer Republican is part of a larger company that owns newspapers and magazines from the East Coast to Iowa. The division that the Republican is part of has three dailies (Rensselaer, Monticello, and Watseka) and eight weeklies, plus ten editions of Shopper News. All are printed in Watseka, Illinois. The advertising and news staff for the Republican work in Rensselaer and the paper is laid out here, then sent electronically to Watseka where an aluminum printing plate is made. The paper takes a bit more than an hour to print. It is then delivered to the post office in Rensselaer (and a few other places) so it can be delivered in the daily mail. The printing plant in Watseka prints the dailies overnight and everything else during the day.

I asked what happened to paper boys and girls. There are still a few places where the paper is delivered that way, but in large cities the threat of crime curtailed them and in the rest of the country the busy after school schedules of many students greatly limited the pool of kids available to deliver papers. Also, the density of the routes has declined. Thirty years ago about 70% of Rensselaer households subscribed to the paper. Now it is between 50 and 55%.

On Friday the Rensselaer Republican will publish a supplement with highlights from its first 150 years.

There are always interesting conversations to be had at the Business After Hours events.

Also Thursday evening a group of garden enthusiasts met to plan for next year's community garden. There will be one and it will be located south of the county annex that houses the Extension office and the Surveyor's office. (There was no community garden this past summer.) There are a lot of details to be worked out yet. One thing that will be different next year will be that gardeners will be allowed to sell their vegetables at the local farmers market. During its first two years the rules forbad sales. Signup will probably occur in January or February.

1 comment:

Jasper County Historical Society said...

Thank you for the data about the Rensselaer Republican family of newspapers. The cake was quite delicious.