This week we sent to press the Methow Valley Summer 2019 magazine, our largest special publication of the year. And this year it’s bigger than ever. We added 16 pages to the magazine to accommodate more information, more graphics and more photography (and, thank you, more advertising as well). It will arrive in the newspaper on April 24, and thousands of copies will be widely distributed in and beyond the valley shortly after that. Let us know if you would like copies for your business to have on hand.
New this year is a lodging guide to complement the dining guide we introduced last year. We hope that aggregating the information for these vital components of the tourism economy will help visitors make good choices.
We’ve brought back articles on golf and local summer camps. Of course, the usual extraordinary range of activities is also well-attended to. We’ve tried to make all the information more accessible, in some cases with easy-to-use graphics. It’s all dressed up with some of the best photography the Methow Valley produces.
Methow Valley Summer is aimed at tourists, but the information is just as valuable to residents. Keep yours around, and perhaps pick up a few for your personal visitors.
It took a lot of staff and freelance hours to put the magazine together and we’re pleased with how it turned out. And we’re a little tired from the effort, which comes on top of producing a weekly newspaper. Thanks to everyone who helped us out.
I put together the magazine’s calendar listings for valley activities from May through September, and I’m exhausted from just thinking about all those events and opportunities available to visitors and valley residents alike. We try to make it as inclusive as possible, but inevitably some things will slip through the cracks. Which is why we encourage everyone to consult the What’s Happening page in the weekly News.
Serendipitously, the Methow Valley Summer 2019 magazine will arrive just days after the North Cascades Highway opens for the season (Thursday of this week, in fact). As you know, we can’t always count on an early influx from the west side. Planners for Winthrop ’49er Days, and for the Zumiez annual sales force convention the first weekend of May, surely are relieved that the pass will be passable.
I suppose you could call last weekend my personal preparation for the looming busy season. It started Friday evening with taking in the Readers’ Theater production of “Nice People Dancing to Good Country Music” at The Merc Playhouse. I laughed along with the sizeable audience that showed up for the performance on an evening when other attractive events beckoned.
Full disclosure, I’m on The Merc programming committee that selected “Nice People Dancing” as a Readers’ Theater presentation because we liked it but couldn’t make it work as a full production for this season. It was great to see people enjoying the play. You never know how the transformation from the two-dimensional page to a three-dimensional imagined world will work out, but director Carolanne Steinebach and an engaging cast made it come alive with enthusiasm and innovation.
Saturday was a day-long trek from one event to another, in the name of photography for the newspaper. That doesn’t mean it was drudgery. If you have to work, hobnobbing with folks at community gatherings is not a bad way to go about it.
The Methow Valley Community Center was logistically ideal, with the April Tools! sale, the first day of the Methow Valley Farmers Market and the Senior Center’s Spring Sale converging within a few feet of each other. The market’s early season doesn’t offer much fresh produce — that’s coming — but the other vendors were ready for us, including some we haven’t seen before.
The tool swap, I was told, was jammed with bargain hunters at its opening. By the time I arrived, a lot of good stuff had already been hauled away, but there was still plenty to peruse — including things I did not recognize or could not contemplate any use for.
From there, I took photos at the Liberty Bell High School soccer game, then took care of some personal errands before finishing the day at the Winthrop Barn appreciation dinner. Inevitably, I countered more than a few of you for the second or third time that weekend. I was reminded once again that, with so much to choose from, it’s not difficult to behave as if we are visitors in our own home.