Friday, January 2, 2009

In Our Neighborhood: Suburban Trends

Were you aware that Suburban Trends is in our neighborhood, here in Kinnelon, NJ?  Right at Butternut Plaza at the corner of Kakeout and Kinnelon Road. 

I hadn't been fully aware until I went to meet Gene Myers, the features editor, after learning that my interview had been published.  [Gene Myers, by the way, publishes a series titled The Joy of Life which is a good read. He's also a poet and publishes interviews with musicians and poets.]

Now, I find it frustrating that the news [broadcasted or printed] will share all kinds of news, but won't inform me of what's happening in my neighborhood.  

If you go to the Suburban Trends website, you can subscribe to Updates and Notices via email. I've done so and received my first update on 12/31/08. It consisted of highlights to the local news you find on the site's left sidebar [i.e., news for Bloomingdale, Butler, Kinnelon, Lincoln Park, Pequannock, Pompton Lakes, Ringwood, Riverdale, Wanaque and West Milford].  It also offered a link to regional news, the police blotter and to Twitter.

Are you familiar with Twitter?  It's a 'microblogging' platform whereby - if you subscribe [it's free] - you can receive [and send out] mini-messages consisting of no more than 140 characters. The New York Times has a Twitter presence, as does News.  Twitter has proven very effective in situations of emergency [e.g., during the 2007 SoCal Wild Fires] and for getting news during the recent Mumbai terror attacks. [You can follow me on Twitter at @cbwhittemore.]

Now, Suburban Trends is new to Twitter, but the fact that they are experimenting with the platform is exciting.

Until meeting Gene, I hadn't understood the relationship between Suburban Trends and the Argus.  Yes, they are related.
Suburban Trends is owned by North Jersey Media Group along with 23 other community papers.  It also owns the Record and Herald News and several North Jersey Magazines. Interestingly, the Argus doesn't have its own website.  However, its main stories come from Suburban Trends.  We receive the Argus in the mail, but Suburban Trends is available on news stands and is far more substantial a paper.

If I've missed any critical details about Suburban Trends, please let me know.

By the way, Julia Dunn, the young woman who interviewed me for the Suburban Trends article, lives in Kinnelon and is a sophomore at Ithaca College.

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