By Sally Santora
Clarion Caledonia Editor
It is with great sadness that I write this farewell
column. This Thursday, March 22, 2007 will be the final publication
of the Lake and Valley Clarion. I have worked as the Caledonia
reporter and editor of the Clarion for 12 years.
I worked in the same capacity for the Caledonia Advertiser for
six years prior to that, from 1989 - 2005. So, the very thought
of not writing the Caledonia news on a weekly basis, doesn't
even seem real.
I'd like to share with you a few of the things that I've had
going through my mind over the past few days. The Caledonia
Advertiser owners, Gerald and Jeanie Keith, were well into their
80's and decided to retire and sell the newspaper.
They sold to a Geneseo publisher by the name of Don Sanders,
who owned small newspapers in several towns in the county. They
recommended that the new publisher at least keep a local person
in Caledonia to gather news for the weekly paper.
Someone was hired to do that but within a very short time, they
quit. In 1989, I was hired by Mr. Sanders as the Caledonia editor/reporter.
Because the original Caledonia Advertiser also included Scottsville
and Mumford, NY news, the format continued in this manner.
Things were very different back then, no computers, no digital
photographs, only typewriters and plenty of correction fluid!
I worked out of my home for Mr. Sanders for six years until
he retired, selling to another publisher who only stayed with
the business a short time before closing the doors for good.
In the meantime, Corrin Strong, the owner and publisher of the
Lake and Valley Clarion and I began discussions to bring the
Caledonia News to the Clarion. I was eager to take on the new
challenge but was still a little concerned with how our Caledonia
readers would receive the change.
Mr. Strong said, Caledonia news only, Scottsville
and Mumford are in Monroe County. With Scottsville having a
different hometown newspaper, The Sentinel, covering their news,
I agreed that we didn't need to continue coverage in that town.
But drop Mumford? There was no way I could do that, Mumford
is North Caledonia and Caledonia is South Mumford!! We are a
community that cannot be cut in two, not even the county line
has ever been able to separate the efforts of Caledonia and
Mumford people to work together as one community.
I explained to Mr. Strong that Mumford must come along on the
move to the Clarion. After much discussion, he consented. In
May 1995, the Caledonia and Mumford News debuted in the Lake
and Valley Clarion. The majority of our loyal readers in both
communities stayed with us from that point on. This is an amazing
testament to the people of Caledonia and Mumford and how much
they value their local hometown news coverage.
For the past 18 years it has been my personal pleasure to bring
you the news. News in the broadest sense of the
word. News here in our community may include an important town,
village or school election, an important development in local
government, a fundraiser for a local family, an upcoming church
event or the results of the annual Cub Scout Pinewood Derby.
Still, all news to those of us who live in what I like to call,
one of the finest communities and home to some of the most interesting
and devoted people you'll find anywhere on earth.
We are fortunate in that we didn't always have hard news
to report, the kind of news that headlines the daily papers,
but we always had plenty of interesting news to print - the
people, events and organizations that make Caledonia-Mumford
the unique place that it is.
Hence, we have never had a shortage of subscribers or people
interested in calling with a story idea. I need to thank Corrin
Strong for giving me the latitude to report the Cal-Mum news
the way I thought the people wanted it.
Thank you, Corrin, for 12 years of employment doing what
I love best - talking about this great town in Northern Livingston
I want to thank all of the people in Caledonia-Mumford for being
loyal readers, for being the subject of so many great stories,
for welcoming me into their lives, for being such an important
part of our community, and for finding value in all that we
do here inour hometown.
The next time you see me, I won't be carrying a camera. How