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January 3, 2017 - Issue 1

Early Bird Registration Rates end FRIDAY!

Deadlines for Early Bird Registration and
Hotel Reservations January 6


Special early-bird registration rates are available through Friday, January 6. Online registration for the convention and meal events is available through Friday, January 20.

Convention registration info:


The DoubleTree by Hilton Minneapolis South is the official MNA Convention Hotel. All sessions and events for the 2017 MNA Convention will be held at the DoubleTree hotel. Don’t miss out on a minute of the convention fun, when you stay on-site! In recent years, our group room block SOLD OUT so be sure to make your reservations before the Friday, January 6, 2017 deadline.

Book online or to make your room reservation by phone, call 1-800-222-8733, and mention “MN Newspaper Association” to get the group rate.

Hotel reservation info:


Freedom Sings - Thursday, January 26

Celebrate MNA’s 150th Anniversary and the First Amendment with Freedom Sings!  Joins us for the entertaining, engaging and inspiring story of free speech in America told through rock, pop, hip-hop and country music. Featuring a cast of award-winning musicians, the performance visits turning points in contemporary history and the popular and sometimes provocative songs they inspired.

Cast Members include:
  • Dez Dickerson – Artist and music entrepreneur and the original guitarist with Prince and the Revolution.
  • Joseph Wooten -  A solo artist and keyboardist for the Hall of Fame-honored Steve Miller Band.
  • Bill Lloyd -  A country hit maker with Foster and Lloyd, a songwriter who work has been recorded by Trisha Yearwood, Martina McBride and Hootie and the Blowfish.
  • Jonell Mosser - A soulful singer and session vocalist, a member of Kentucky Thunder and former member of the New Maroons, with Ringo Starr on drums.
  • Jason White - A singer–songwriter who has written hits for Tim McGraw and Carrie Underwood. 
  • Jessie Wooten – Innovative young drummer based in Nashville.
  • Ken Paulson - author and narrator of Freedoms Sings, former USA TODAY editor-in-chief, now president of the First Amendment Center and Dean of the College of Media and Entertainment at Middle Tennessee State University. 
All convention attendees are welcome to attend this event! You can purchase a lunch ticket, that includes the performance for $33, or you can attend the performance only for free. Just register online. 

BNC Banquet - Thursday, January 26

This annual event honors the winners of the 2015-16 Better Newspaper Contest. Guests are seated at 6:30 p.m. for dinner. Awards program will begin at 7:15 p.m. Event will end by 10:00 p.m. It's a festive celebration of the Minnesota newspaper industry's accomplishments. Cash bars will be available through the end of the event. Registration required.

Luncheon Keynote from Patty & Jerry Wetterling - Friday, January 27

For 27 years, the Wetterlings refused to lose hope as they searched for their son Jacob who disappeared in October 1989. The Wetterlings will join MNA members to talk about the media’s role in Jacob’s case, how their work to protect children across the country has grown and changed over the years and they will take your questions.


A draft of the full convention schedule is now available!

Download the latest Convention Schedule

Check our Sessions & Speakers page often for speaker bios and other updates!
Session and speaker info:


Ed Henninger will be leading two sessions at the MNA Convention on Thursday, January 26. Ed is offering a special opportunity to convention attendees. You can book a free 15-minute newspaper design consultation with Ed Henninger at the MNA Convention. Only 12 spots are available on Thursday, January 26. We will contact you by email to confirm your appointment and the meeting room. This opportunity is available on a first-come, first-served basis - 10 spots remain.

Click here to sign up for your FREE 1on1 consulation


Celebrating MNA’s 150th Anniversary!

This year, MNA proudly celebrates its 150th anniversary! Join the celebration by creating an ad promoting the strength, importance, and relevance of the newspaper industry. Newspapers have been a vital source of information to readers since colonial times and through generations of change, still remain the number one place communities look to for news and information. Although today we face new and unique challenges, we are still an important community leader writing the first draft of history. We know communities with newspaper thrive.

Help us tell that important story with your 2017 Ad Design Contest Entry.

As always, MNA Convention attendees will review the ads and choose their favorites; winners will take home a cash prize and will play an important role in celebrating MNA’s 150th anniversary!

First Place: $350 prize
Second Place: $150 prize

More information and entry instructions

MNA Nominating Committee Report

MNA’s Nominating Committee has asked Diann Drew to stand for election to the MNA Board of Directors

Diann Drew is the Controller of Forum Communications Company Lakes Group Newspapers which includes Alexandria Echo Press, Detroit Lakes Tribune, Hancock Record, Morris Sun Tribune, Osakis Review, Park Rapids Enterprise, Perham Focus and Wadena Pioneer Journal.

Drew earned her undergraduate degree from Northern State University, majoring in sociology with a business minor. 

Drew started her newspaper career as a circulation clerk at the Brookings Register in Brookings, SD in 1993 and was promoted to Business Manager and also worked as the Circulation Manager.  She continued to work there until she joined the Alexandria Echo Press as Business Manager in 2000.  She later added the responsibilities of managing the business functions for two other Forum weeklies and was promoted to Controller in 2015 with the added responsibilities of additional weeklies.

Drew has served on MNA’s membership committee.  Outside of work she is active in the Alexandria Kiwanis Club having served as President.  She has served as a board member of the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce and is currently a Chamber of Commerce Ambassador.

She makes her home in Alexandria with her husband, Don.  They have two daughters, Erin and Rachel.

At 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, January 26, Nominating Committee Chairman Joni Harms will receive further nominations for officers and directors at the Member Services Booth at the MNA Convention.

4th Quarter MCAN/2x2 Tracking Forms Due TOMORROW!

The 4th quarter tracking information for 2016 is due back by Wednesday, January 4th.

This is the FINAL form needed for 2016. MNA will use these to calculate your rebate for running Network ads in  2016.

The forms were emailed to ALL participating members earlier this year.

If you need a new form click here to download a copy.

Click here to shop for 150th Anniversary gear. 

Place your order by Friday, January 6 to pick up your shirt at the MNA Convention. Orders placed after
January 6 will ship in early February.

Back in 2017: Silent Auction and Wall of Wine

Year after year MNA Convention attendees support the MNA’s nonprofit training arm, the Minnesota News Media Institute, at the annual Silent Auction and Wall of Wine.

Silent Auction
Always a highlight of the convention, attendees peruse the collection of goods and services for sale (and exercise various competitive bidding methods) to benefit the future of the newspaper industry! 

We are looking for at least 50 items, each valued at $25-100 or more, in order to make this annual fundraiser a success! Do you have local delicacies to share? A great resort in town? A crafty staff member? Donate!! Popular items include newspaper-themed gifts, sporting event tickets, concert tickets, signed memorabilia, pottery, travel packages, gift baskets and more!

Please download a Silent Auction Donation Form and submit it to MNA by Friday, January 13, 2017. You may send or drop off your silent auction items to the MNA Office by Monday, January 23, or arrange to drop it off at the convention hotel Wednesday, January 25 during setup.

More info:

Wall of Wine

First started in 2010 – the Wall of Wine has become a crowd favorite and we expect more fun in 2017.

Do you have a local winery? A favorite bottle to drink with friends? Consider sharing a bottle with MNI as part of the 2017 Wall of Wine. Perhaps you have a craft brewery in your town that has the best tasting beer around? Consider sharing a 6-pack with MNI. If you don’t have time to shop for the wine or beer, or are not sure what to buy – consider a cash donation, and we will do the shopping for you!

If you have any questions, contact LuAnn Yattaw at (612) 278-0235 or

More info:

Ad-libs: How to handle unspoken objections

Brandon is an advertising manager who wants his team to be prepared for all sales situations. “We spend a lot of time on sales strategy,” he said, “because that helps us cut down on unexpected surprises. To use a baseball comparison, we want to be able to hit the curveball.

“As any sales person will tell you, the most common curveball is an objection,” Brandon explained. “Most prospects have some kind of objection, even if they don’t say it out loud. Unspoken objections can be real sales killers. You’re sailing along thinking everything is going fine, then at the end of the conversation the prospect says, ‘I’ll think about it and let you know.’ That creates a real predicament for a sales person.

“There’s an old saying that silence is golden, but that’s not true in selling,” Brandon said. “Sometimes it’s your job to verbalize what the prospect is thinking. If you don’t, the objection that is lurking below the surface may never come to light. I disagree with the idea that you can’t answer an objection you don’t hear. An unspoken objection can sink your presentation just as fast as one that is shouted.

Brandon explained that the key is to be prepared to weave answers to objections into the presentation. The good news is that most objections are predictable. If a sales person has done his or her homework, there’s no reason to be surprised to hear a question about price, readership statistics, ad position or production.

Continue reading...

Al Cross: Into the Issues

Rural votes played a big role in Donald Trump’s victory, and he plans some big changes that will have a big impact in rural communities.

Extractive industries do most of their extracting in rural areas, and Trump promised “to topple just about every major energy and environment policy enacted in the past eight years,” Robin Bravender reported for Environment & Energy News, in a story that we excerpted on The Rural Blog at

The Obama administration policies most likely to be reversed are the Environmental Protection Agency’s redefinition of “waters of the United States” in the Clean Water Act, strongly opposed by farm interests, and the regulations to limit carbon-dioxide emissions from coal-fired power plants.

But there is little that Trump can do to bring back power-plant markets that coal has lost to cheap natural gas, experts said in an earlier blog item, at In it, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the No. 3 coal state, said it is “hard to tell” whether a reversal of Obama’s policies will bring back the industry. Trump hasn’t said exactly how he would help coal, we noted at, an item that also noted his support of oil pipelines.

Continue reading...

December Network Honor Rolls

Four newspapers placed 2×2 ads and three newspapers placed MCAN ads in the month of December.

Herald Journal Publishing - 4
Pope County Tribune, Glenwood - 1
Rochester Post-Bulletin – 3
The Review Messenger, Sebeka - 1

Belle Plaine Herald - 1
Crookston Daily Times - 1
Kerkhoven Banner - 3

A bonus went to the following six salespeople who sold an ad into the networks. Congratulations!

Tim Douglass
Bernice Eckenrode
Sam Ediger-Johnson
Barb Flicker
Monica Hensley
Chris Schultz

Click here to read about our 2017 Network Ad Sales Incentive Program and you can earn a bonus next month!

Full Color 2017 Press ID Passes Now Available!

MNA is pleased to offer full color Press ID Cards to members again for 2017. The customized ID cards feature the card holder’s photo and signature, as well as the newspaper’s name and phone number.

The ID is driver’s license-sized and printed in full color on durable plastic so it will last all year without tearing or bending, like MNA’s traditional paper press cards. The Press ID Cards have a professional look and may even be accepted as a second form of identification in some establishments.

Press ID cards for publishers and staff members can be ordered for only $5 each.

Click here to for more info and to order

To log into the "Members Only" section of the MNA website, please use the following information:

Username: Member
Password: Newspaper

What’s your idea? Apply now for 2017-2018 RJI Fellowships

The Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute invites proposals from people and institutions to collaborate with us on innovative ideas and projects to improve the practice or understanding of journalism. We’re giving special consideration this year to ideas and projects focused on solving problems created by filter bubbles, fake news and mistrust of the news media; however, we also invite submission of other ideas and projects that could strengthen democracy through better journalism.
Successful collaborations are often in one of three categories but are not limited to the following:
  • Transformation of an idea into a market-tested prototype.
  • Development and deployment of a prototyped product or service into a substantial market test to prepare it for angel or venture investment or a full product launch.
  • Scholarly research that leads to publication of new understandings about the practice of journalism.
There are three types of RJI Fellowships for 2017-2018: residential, nonresidential and institutional. Residential fellows spend eight months on the University of Missouri campus. Nonresidential fellows explore their ideas from their home or office, with an occasional visit to campus. The institutional fellowship allows an individual to remain at their post at a news organization or other institution while developing an idea.
Each fellowship includes a stipend. Residential fellows receive an $80,000 stipend and a $10,000 one-time housing or relocation allowance. Nonresidential fellows receive a $20,000 stipend, plus research and travel support. The institutional fellowship stipend — $20,000 — is paid to the company or institution and can be used for salary relief or for another purpose to best ensure the success of the fellowship project.
RJI Fellowships are open to U.S. citizens and foreign journalists. The deadline to apply is Feb. 1, 2017.
Click here for more information and to apply.

“In the Dark”: Shining a new light on the Jacob Wetterling case

January 10, 2017

Reporters Madeleine Baran and Samara Freemark of APM Reports spent a year investigating the case of Jacob Wetterling, an 11-year-old boy who was kidnapped in St. Joseph, Minn., in 1989. Baran and Freemark centered their investigation on a simple question: Why did it take 27 years to solve the case? The culmination of their work, “In the Dark,” was named as one of the Top 10 podcasts of the year by the New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, Vulture, and iTunes. It has been downloaded 5 million times since its launch last fall. 

Baran and Freemark will share their experiences of telling this story with a fresh lens, the craft of podcasting, and media ethics. This panel discussion will be moderated by author Nora McInerny Purmort, host of the podcast “Terrible, Thanks for Asking.” The Minnesota Society of Professional Journalists is organizing the event with generous support from the Minnesota Journalism Center. Plenty of appetizers and a cash bar will be on site. Just bring your questions!

More info and register...

Notoriety with Left-Handed Edition 

Thursday, January 12 
10:00 a.m.

About the program: 
Just for fun, the staff of the Custer County Chief opted to print a left-handed newspaper. It was hugely successful, a nice moneymaker and a great team builder. The product was viewed as a special edition with focus on front-page news, feature stories, sports and advertising- leaving only the public notices section. The Chief ended up on The Associated Press with the headline “McCaslin is a leftist” which prompted paper requests from around the world. The paper over printed in anticipation, and promptly sold out. 

Leading the Discussion: 
HOST Stan Schwartz, National Newspaper Association 
Deb McCaslin, former publisher of the Custer County Chief, in Broken Bow, NE 

Registration fee:
$30 for NNA Members 
$65 for non-members 

Register by Monday, Janaury 9 

(Registrations submitted after this date are subject to a $10 late fee until Midnight Jan. 11)

PUB AUX LIVE, featuring revenue-generating ideas for community newspapers, is brought to you by The National Newspaper Association, in partnership with the Iowa Newspaper Foundation.

Register online now

Get Ready to Kick Off 2017 with Online Media Campus Training!

Check out the upcoming webinar from Online Media Campus!

50 Ideas in 50 Minutes

Thursday, January 12
1:00 – 2:00 p.m.

This webinar will offer up creative ideas you can start working on in your newsroom immediately. This will be fast-paced, and will include references to the original stories as well as some great techniques to help you execute these stories in newsrooms of all sizes.

More information and register...

Classifieds 2017: Feast or Famine?

Friday, January 13
1:00 – 2:00 p.m.

Is 2017 a Great Unknown or do we now have CLUES in order to prepare for a GIANT classified windfall?

  1. JOBS: Will construction infrastructure programs pass and fill each state with loads of blue collar jobs which LOVE newspaper classifieds? Will you be ready to attract that advertising?
  2. REAL ESTATE: Will the president-elect’s love for real estate translate into new programs for homebuilders and even better tax credits for buying a home thus stimulating the entire industry? Are your current real estate products up to the task?
  3. AUTOMOTIVE: With new homes and new jobs always comes buying a new car. Will possible new manufacturing rules help or hurt the auto industry?

Will your newspaper be ready on a dime to take advantage of the possible giant explosion in the above Classified categories? And what will you do if the opposite happens?

More information and register...

Upcoming Slimp/Newspaper Academy Webinars

MNA Members are eligible for a 20% discount on upcoming webinars when you register at

Ed Henninger: Ten Surefire Ways to Design a Better Newspaper
Jan 11: 2 p.m. Central
$49 ($39 with discount) 45 Minutes

Tim Smith: Sales by the Numbers
Jan 12: 2 p.m. Central
$49 ($39 with association discount) 50 Minutes 
At the Academy, we don't offer "pie in the sky" theories or try to sell you on "analytics" or social media. Tim Smith is as good as it gets when it comes to training newspaper sales staffs. Don't miss this opportunity. This class is offered on Thursday afternoon and Tuesday morning to accommodate tight schedules. Pick the one that works best for you.

Kevin Slimp: Scripts, The Hidden Treasure in InDesign
Jan 19: 10 a.m. Central
$29 ($24 with association discount) 35 Minutes
If you're an InDesign user and you don't know everything there is to know about using scripts, then you are missing out. Scripts are possibly the most important time-saving feature in all of InDesign. Learn how to use scripts to do everything from alphabetize your lists, to laying out your reality and auto ads, to creating your calendars. Don't miss this one!

Visit to register for upcoming events.

Don't forget: Upload your public notices today!

In 2014, MNA successfully launched its online clearinghouse of Minnesota public notices. Since then, 120 MNA member newspapers have posted more than 35,000 public notices on the site. 

Now, MNA has developed a series of house ads you can use to promote in your newspaper and on your website. 
If you haven't started posting your public notices yet, and are interested in getting started, MNA will provide training and support. We are available to answer questions and walk you through the process of posting your notices. Please contact Sarah Jackson to sign up and also set up training for you or your staff - there are a variety of options, in person, by phone or Google Hangout. 

Our goal is to have 100% participation by MNA member newspapers and we're getting closer every day. Please sign up today, or give us a call to learn more about the site.

Click here for more info and to view/download ads!

2017 Public Notice Journalism Awards

The public notice ads that run in your newspaper are a gold mine of great stories. You may already know this. If you reported an important story in 2016 that was based on a public notice, you should enter it in this year’s Public Notice Journalism Contest. There’s no entry fee and the grand prize is $500 and a free trip to
Washington, D.C., where the winner will be saluted in a special ceremony at the National Press Club.

For information about how to enter, visit

Entry deadline is Friday, Jan. 27, 2017.

Send us your best editorial for Golden Quill Contest

The International Society of Weekly Newspaper Editors (ISWNE) is accepting entries for the 57th annual Golden Quill editorial writing contest.
All newspapers of less than daily frequency (published fewer than five days per week) are qualified to enter. Entries must have been published between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2016.
Each newspaper is allowed up to four entries; two is the maximum per person. Entry fee is $25 per person; checks should be made payable to ISWNE. To enter, complete the PDF form at (under Contests) and send a tearsheet with the Golden Quill entry clearly marked. Send two copies of each entry to Chad Stebbins, Missouri Southern State University, 3950 E. Newman Road, Joplin, MO 64801-1595. Entries must be postmarked by Feb. 1, 2017.
Entries should reflect the purpose of ISWNE: Encouraging the writing of editorials or staff-written opinion pieces that identify local issues that are of should be of concern to the community, offer an opinion, and support a course of action.
The Golden Quill winner will receive a conference scholarship and travel expenses up to $500 to attend ISWNE’s annual conference at College Park, Maryland, June 28-July 2. Golden Quill runners-up (called the Golden Dozen) will receive conference scholarships if they have not previously attended an ISWNE conference.
Grassroots Editor, ISWNE’s quarterly journal, will reprint the Golden Quill and Golden Dozen editorials in the Summer 2017 issue.
For questions, contact Chad Stebbins at

If you have news to share in the MNA Tradewinds,
please email us:

American PressWorks, Inc., of Falls Church Will Have New Owner, New Name
Richard Karpel, a seasoned association executive, became president and owner of American PressWorks, Inc. on January 1, the company announced. The company will also officially change its name, from American PressWorks to APW, which has been its colloquial moniker for many years now.

Karpel takes over from APW’s founders, Tonda F. Rush and Carol S. Pierce, who began the company in 1998 to provide management services for small associations. In its nearly 20 years, APW has provided full management services for six organizations and consulting for a host of others. It is based in Falls Church, VA.

APW will continue as management headquarters for American Court and Commercial Newspapers and Public Notice Resource Center, and will provide consulting services for National Newspaper Association (NNA) and other organizations. More...

Remembering a longtime local newspaper legacy and community icon
The Albert Lea Tribune lost one of its longtime writers and columnists this week who is being remembered as a tireless community advocate and journalist and a lover of local history.

Ed Shannon, 89, died December 12 at St. Marys Hospital in Rochester.

Shannon worked at the Tribune from 1984 through 2011, and prior to that worked at Land O’Lakes and Olsen Manufacturing. First hired as a writer — covering everything from law enforcement to car wrecks to features to play reviews and even a little sports — Shannon was most known for his historical features, weekly column and the daily Peek at the Past. More...

New editor joins DCI
If you happen to see a new face wandering the streets of Dodge County neighborhoods, with a notepad in hand and a camera bag slung over his shoulder, that's probably just Ryan Rhodes, who became news editor for the Dodge County Independent on Nov. 17. Rhodes replaces Hannah Bates, who had served as news editor and recently moved closer to her home area of Illinois. With Rhodes coming on board, managing editor Mark DeLap will still serve in an advisory role for the paper, but work mainly from the DCI's sister publication, the Steele County Times in Blooming Prairie. In his new role as editor, Rhodes will be responsible for covering Kasson and Mantorville as well as other portions of the county. Besides focusing on writing and photography, he will handle design of the news pages. He also writes a weekly column. 

Member Classifieds:

General Assignment Reporter
The McLeod County Chronicle in Glencoe, Minnesota, is seeking a full-time general assignment reporter. More...

Multimedia Sales Consultants
Multimedia Sales Consultants are responsible for selling online and print products with a consultative approach for The West Cental Tribune and the Forum Communications Network. More...

The Detroit Lakes Tribune is looking to hire a full time photographer/reporter. A passion and talent for photography is a must. More...

Access to the MNA Member Classifieds Page is free to MNA members.  To submit an ad, please click the “Submit a Job Posting” or “Submit a For Sale/Wanted Posting” buttons on the Member Classifieds page.  MNA Members are also encouraged to post ads for available internships (submit as a Job Posting).  Non-members may send an ad by e-mail to:  The charge for non-members to place ads is $25 per week (payable by check or credit card).  If you have any questions, please email or call MNA: or 612-332-8844.

NOTE:  Once jobs are filled, or For sale/Wanted postings expired, please ask MNA to remove your post from the Member Classifieds. You can send an e-mail to

Weekly Quick Clicks

50 Motivational Quotes to Ignite Your Sales Drive in 2017
(Courtesy of HubSpot)

How to Close a Sale in 5 Steps [Infographic]
(Courtesy of HubSpot)

5 Traits Shared by the Best Salespeople
(Courtesy of Business to Community)

How Ad Blocking Played Out in 2016
(Courtesy of DigiDay)

How To Show The Prospect The Future’s Brighter With You
(Courtesy of MTD Sales Training)

Teen buys Arkansas weekly, starts newspaper anew
(Courtesy of Northwest Arkansas Newspapers)

Why new journalism grads are optimistic about 2017
(Courtesy of Poynter)

Members Only!

To log into the "Members Only" section of the MNA website, please use the following information:

Username: Member
Password: Newspaper

Upcoming Events

Check out upcoming training events from the Local Media Association
Discounted rates for MNA Members!

50 Ideas in 50 Minutes
January 12

Classifieds 2017: Feast or Famine?
January 13

What Every Employer Should Know About Union Organizing
January 19

150th Annual MNA Convention
January 26-27
MNA/MNI Event Calendar
MNA Member Classifieds
This Week's Network Ads
Recent Press Releases
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