Change is good, thank-yous are better |

Change is good, thank-yous are better

A year ago around this time, I wrote a column about the Colorado Avalanche. How exciting, once again, to see our talented, athletic – OK, I’ll say it again 12 months later – handsome hockey team in the playoffs. I may have some tickets to the game Saturday at the Pepsi Center. If not, I’ll cheer from Glenwood Springs with everyone else.There have been some recent changes at the Post Independent. Let me share a few.Circulation increase. First and foremost, we have increased our average daily press run by 1,000 papers to better serve readers and advertisers. The truth is, when spring rolled around, people began to pick up a lot more newspapers. In April, when we published the 2002 Locals’ Choice ballots, we increased the press count.In early May, we introduced the “Never Go Empty” program, and again increased the press run. With this new program, our newspaper is distributed to key areas in Glenwood Springs, then our staff re-stocks throughout the day.The five Never Go Empty spots in Glenwood Springs are City Market, the Post Office, Ninth & Grand and the two 7-Eleven stores. We’ll be adding more in other areas.By the middle of May, we again increased the press numbers to reach a total of about 1,000 additional papers per day when compared to early April’s numbers. More newspapers are now delivered to Parachute, Rifle, Silt, New Castle, West Glenwood, Glenwood Springs, Carbondale, El Jebel, Basalt and Aspen.Home delivery of the Post Independent is still available. Why would you pay for a paper when you can get it for free at the store or the office? We hear this question frequently.Our home delivery service is exactly that, a service. We deliver to customers in town as well as folks who live miles from the nearest highway, for what we believe is a reasonable price. Let us know if you are interested in home delivery.TVTimes. In this week’s Options section, published each week in the Friday/Saturday edition, you will notice that we have changed TVTimes. If you see this and are really mad, please do not call our managing editor or advertising director. Call me.The decision to consolidate 12 pages of TV listings to four was a group decision, but I’m the one who brought it to the table. The reason? Cost savings. Although TV listings drive readership, they require a lot of space with little return of advertising revenue.You will see in the new TVTimes that we have included a Prime Time grid for every night of the week, as well as “Soap Update.” We’ll reinvest in other areas of our newspaper, with the continued objective to provide excellent, all-around editorial coverage and customer service from all departments. 2002 Locals’ Choice. The long-awaited “Locals’ Choice Awards” section will be published tomorrow. Our editorial and photography staff deserve an award. The stories are witty, photography superb and layout sharp.In addition, our “Research Department” did an awesome job tallying the results. Congratulations to the dozens of winners and many more honorable mentions in our community.Memorial Day. I wish everyone a safe and enjoyable holiday on Monday. As a military child, I grew up on Air Force bases. When we lived on Fuchu Air Base in Japan, every day at 5 p.m. the Star Spangled Banner was played over the speakers. If you were outside, you were supposed to stop and face the American flag, which flew outside the main headquarters. Military personnel would salute. Kids would fidget, but we understood what it meant.My father is a retired Air Force colonel and my mother is a former member of the Women’s Army Corps. On this day, I honor those brave men and women who have lost their lives serving our country and am thankful for active and retired personnel.Every Memorial Day, I call Dad with the intent to tell him how proud I am that he was a pilot in World War II and had a distinguished military career. I rehearse a short speech, remembering he was a young leader in the 315th Troop Carrier group and his stories about flying over England and France.Every time, I get teary-eyed and end up saying, “I love you.” I’ll send him this column, because in light of what our country has been through over the past year, I definitely won’t get through my speech on Monday.Valerie J. Smith recently celebrated her one-year anniversary as publisher of the Glenwood Springs Post Independent.

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