Fernandina Observer – A look back and forward

Beryl 007
Damage from tropical storm Beryl

Thank you readers for your overwhelming support for the Fernandina Observer.  When we began our journey almost seven months ago, we never dreamed our local online news blog would be so well received.  We have developed a strong and steadfast readership that continues to grow.  By utilizing a web based delivery system and tapping into social media,  we have reached individuals once uninformed; now they are informed.

When tropical storms came our way, we provided up to the minute reports on damage, and cleanup efforts.  When local elections were held, we provided a platform for candidates to let you know their stand on issues. When city commission meetings were held, our coverage was delivered to you within 24 hours in thorough well written reports.   Suanne Thamm, our reporter news analyst, is key to our success and we are grateful for her many contributions.

City Commission Mtg Sept 18
2012 Fernandina Beach City Commission

Here are just a few of the comments  received from our readership.  “A gift to the community . .  “Thank you for this journal!  It is great to read about another side of issues and different stories than the local paper . . .”  “A great alternative to the usual stuff . . .”  “The Fernandina Observer is the NPR of Amelia Island . . ” “Thank you for your unbiased, factual reporting.  It’s a pleasure to read what your editors have to say. I look forward to your posts each week.”  Thank you readers!  Your comments inspire and motivate us.


Ryan Crop
2012 Vice Presidential Candidate Paul Ryan visits Fernandina Beach

Since the end of  May, we have posted 377 times. Our dedicated group of volunteers, Suanne Thamm,  Gerry Clare, Roving Reporter, John Carr who updates us on the Greenway, Deborah Powers, who compiles “Police Blotter Blasts,” and city employee profiles,  and area photographers who capture Amelia Island at its best, work to keep you informed, and share the beauty of our island community. We welcome others to work with us and to share talents and skills.

Clydesdale Horses - Libby
Budweiser Clydesdale Horses
Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Wilkes

At the beginning of our journey, we pledged to inform and educate, not confuse and mislead.  When credit was due, we promised to build up our community, not tear it down.  If issues arose that demanded public attention, or if mistakes were made that demanded accountability, we promised to keep you informed.   Our community deserves the best in news coverage, so as we begin the new year, we again say, “We are committed and we will be different!”

January 1, 2013 2:10 p.m.

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Penny Sansbury
Penny Sansbury (@guest_2660)
11 years ago

Keep up the good work. Looking forward to more news in 2013.