Sitting on my desk, with a few last editing marks, is the proofing printout for the Methow Valley Winter 2023-24 magazine, waiting for the final OK — always a gratifying moment, but also a little nerve-wracking as we look for last-minute fixes. By the time you read this, the magazine will probably have already reproduced in thousands of copies on the big Wenatchee World press, on its way to your newspaper next week and to dozens of distribution points in the valley and beyond.
There’s a sneak preview of the cover accompanying this column, so you will recognize and hang on to it when you open next week’s Methow Valley News. The magazine’s a keeper. There is a lot of useful information to absorb, from Steve Mitchell’s bright, inviting cover photo to the always-engaging Methow Reservations ad on the back page — this time featuring some of their greatest hits.
Methow Winter is intended as a user’s guide for the valley during its other favorite season, but it’s not just an instruction manual. We put a lot of effort into the articles, photography and design so it will be as attractive as it is practical. Appearance matters. We’re proud that our magazines win awards year after year.
As with several of our other magazines this year, we have restored the glossy covers to Methow Winter 2023-24. During and for a time after the COVID pandemic, we continued to print our magazines on high-gloss newsprint but dropped the glossy covers for cost reasons. We are glad to be able to restore them — the “slick” covers are more attractive and durable, qualities we appreciate and that we believe our readers and advertisers do as well.
Methow Winter 2023-24 providentially seems to be arriving just in time. We’ve already had a noteworthy snowfall that, while it didn’t endure, is a hopeful harbinger of what’s to come. Our thanks to everyone who helped us with the contents, from advertisers and information sources to photographers, mapmakers and freelancers.
In this week’s paper, you’ll find another winter-related publication, the Winter Recreationland Guide, a product the Okanogan Valley Gazette Tribune of Oroville. Under an arrangement with the newspaper’s owner, Sound Publishing, we are distributing those magazines to our in-county readers (you won’t see it if you live outside of Okanogan County). It’s a partnership we find mutually useful, as there is very little overlap in content. It should prove useful for those of you who venture over the Loup in search of other winter adventures within easy reach.
Next in our magazine lineup is Valley Vows, a guide to staging a memorable Methow wedding. We’re working on that one now, while also planning for the Methow Home magazine. And then after that, we are back to Methow Valley Summer 2024. It will be upon us sooner than we think.
But let’s enjoy the winter first.
The next round
No matter what happens in this week’s elections — notably the aquatics district and Three Rivers Hospital ballot measures and the Methow Valley School Board races — the inevitable next question will be, “now what?” We’re wondering that too, and will try to sort it out over the next few weeks as we decompress from an intensive couple of months of campaigning and coverage.
That will start with next week’s newspaper. Tuesday night election results are always posted after we have gone to press, so the best we can do is post them online and the begin the follow-up process. There will be plenty to talk about.
Back in the old days (and I am qualified to call them “old”), newsrooms were exciting places to be on election night. There was a lot of expectation, tension and energy as results came in reporters and editors (I’ve been both) processed a steady flow of copy. It was also a tradition, in many places, to order in pizzas for the newsroom workers to keep them fortified.
This past Tuesday night, it was just me and my computer. There may also have been a pizza involved, for old-time’s sake.