The End of an Era: The Record sold to Mid-American Publishing Inc.
As of Nov. 1, Conrad’s own hometown newspaper, The Record, will be under new ownership!
The Record was sold to Hampton-based Mid-America Publishing Corporation on Wednesday, Oct. 31. This week’s edition will be the last published under the current ownership of veteran newspaperman Chuck Friend.
The Record joins a portfolio of 18 other Iowa weekly newspapers proudly published by Mid-America Publishing Inc., including the county seat paper, The Grundy Register in Grundy Center. Mid-America also owns other newspapers in north Iowa including; The Leader, with newspaper with offices in Garner and Britt; the Kanawha Reporter, the Wright County Monitor, in Clarion and Dows; the Eagle Grove Eagle; the Buffalo Center Tribune, The Pioneer Enterprise (Rockwell-Thornton), The Graphic-Advocate (Lake City-Rockwell City); The Sheffield Press; The Hampton Chronicle; The Butler County Tribune-Journal (Allison); and the Clarksville Star. The company additionally operates newspapers in Sigourney (Sigourney News-Review,) Keota (the Keota Eagle,) New Sharon (The New Sharon Sun,) and Fremont (The Fremont-What Cheer Vine.) The company also puts out two weekly political newspapers, the Conservative Chronicle and the Liberal Opinion Week.
“We hope to carry on the tradition of The Record as being a newspaper chronicling local life and personalities,” said Ryan Harvey, president and CEO of Mid-America. “We believe strongly in the tradition of weekly newspapers. The ability to share content with The Grundy Register while being able to offer complete countywide coverage in Grundy County should provide a positive experience for the community.” “You’ll notice a slight change in your paper next week,” Harvey said. “The width of the paper will be slightly wider than the current paper. We will do this because of our press requirements.”
Clint Poock, the publisher of The Grundy Register and the newspapers in Allison and Clarksville, has been named as the publisher of The Record.
“I’m really excited for this opportunity! You put newspaper photo’s in scrapbooks, you re-read articles, you mail stories to your family and in-laws,” Poock said. “A great community deserves a great newspaper and that’s what we want to be”.
“Community newspapers bring community and neighbors together,” Poock said. “I look forward to becoming more familiar with the citizens and businesses in Conrad.”
While Friend will be stepping away from the operation, the remainder of the staff will continue.
Roger Polt will service advertising accounts while Robert Fisher will be the editor. Stephanie McManus will serve as the office assistant and customer service representative.
“I’ve had the opportunity to meet with the staff,” Harvey noted, “and I’m extremely impressed with their abilities, knowledge and their love for their community. They are going to make great additions to the Mid-America team.”
Matt Grohe, Mid-America Publishing Chairman remarked that, “We’re happy to be a part of the community in Conrad and want to thank Chuck Friend for working with us to make this possible. We’re excited to be taking over the reins and offering new products and services.”
Harvey said Mid-America’s interest in Conrad is partly because of the good mix of businesses operating there, including both new and established industries and employers which bring people to the community.
“A community newspaper is only as healthy as the community it serves,” Harvey added. “It is encouraging to see the commitment to commerce in Conrad over the long term.”
The Record will stay in its current location at 104 N. Main in Conrad, and will retain its mailing address, email addresses, and phone number.
Readers of The Record will notice some changes immediately, however. One is the addition of Marketplace, a common section among the company’s papers in north central Iowa with news, advertising, and puzzles. The other is American Profile, a weekly section featuring recipes, celebrity news, and fun information.
The Record will continue to offer office supplies, however, the supplies offered will be much more limited than before. Mid-America also offers a plethora of services, including customized black and white and four-color commercial printing for all of your personal and business needs, and direct mail services. You’ll see more about that in the weeks to come.