02PubPenThis is a time of year, with Thanksgiving drawing near, when many of us spend time reflecting on our lives and counting our blessings. It’s true, we live in interesting times; some would even say troubling times. Headlines report rising tensions around the globe with the spotlight currently shining on the Middle East, North Korea, Russia and, of course, the ongoing battle against terrorism. An avalanche of sex scandals continues to break with new accusations against various high-profile personalities released almost daily. Recurring mass shootings and continued political strife continue to plague our country. Still, there are many reasons to give thanks.

One of the things we at Up & Coming Weekly are thankful for is you, our reader.

For more than two decades, we’vehad the privilege of bringing you good news and positive coverage of the greater Fayetteville and Cumberland County area. Because of you, we get to seek out the goodness, promote the generosity of our citizens and share the facts that counter the naysayers and prove the haters wrong and misinformed. Because of you, we get to tell this community’s story. We bring you the unbridled truth about the people, businesses and organiza- tions working hard to make Cumberland County a better place.

It’s no secret that the print media indus- try is struggling. Subscriptions are down across the country, and many publications – both nationally and locally – are fighting just to keep their doors open. Even iconic publications like Vogue and Rolling Stone have felt the change with the former losing its editor of more than 25 years and the lat- ter preparing to hang a “for sale” sign on its door. In fact, it wasn’t too long ago that national publishing giant Gatehouse Media bought the family-owned The Fayetteville Observer, North Carolina’s oldest newspaper. So, we are feeling it here, too.

It is mostly the daily, subscription- based newspapers feeling the brunt of this trend. Up & Coming Weekly is a free weekly community publication and doesn’t rely on paid subscriptions. We focus on the local community and rely on “demand” distribution at more than 500 locations in Fayetteville, Fort Bragg, Hope Mills and other places in Cumberland County. This means Up & Coming Weekly readers “demand” the publication and search it out. In addition, many enjoy it conveniently online.

Because you continue to pick up our paper around town and read it online, we get to continue celebrating the goodness and uniqueness of this community while discussing the most important issues that affect quality of life locally. We get to sup- port local nonprofits, engage with community advocates, promote high-quality events and share the meaningful stories that make this community special. Thank you for giving us that opportunity. It feels good to serve a community that allows us the opportunity to walk on the sunny side of the street.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours from the staff at Up & Coming Weekly.

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