Springdale Columnist Wanted

Editor Wants Writers To Tell City’s Story

Posted: November 16, 2009 at 4:17 a.m.

— Most people think they live in a hometown that’s special, unique, comforting. Just try to think of a place — a city, a village, a community — that doesn’t have a vocal, dedicated group of residents who wouldn’t dream of living anywhere else in the world.

Springdale is such a place. For the legions of people who have made new lives here, or who have never lived anywhere else, there’s not a better hometown.

I know what some of you are thinking. Everyone says their hometown is the best. There are people who feel the same way about Fayetteville or Rogers or Bentonville or — heaven forbid — even someplace in Texas.

Well, that’s true. Everyone does think their hometown is without peer. But that doesn’t mean that Springdale’s not the greatest, at least not for the people who call it home.

Maybe it’s the excellent schools. Maybe it’s the friendly neighborhoods. Maybe it’s Springdale’s reputation as a hard-working, humble, reverent community. Whatever the reason, for thousands of people, there’s just no better place than Springdale.

That’s not to say it’s perfect. No place is. There are certainly ways to make the community better, stronger.

But the foundation here in Springdale is solid, made so by generations of people who love this place like no other, and who work to leave it better off for the next generation.

Do you know someone who thinks that way? Are you someone who thinks that way? If so, tell me about it.

I’d like to fill this space in every Monday edition of the Springdale Morning News with a column that reflects Springdale’s past, looks hopefully to its future and reminds us of what this town ought to be.

I’m not looking for another political columnist to comment on health care or the deficit, or an unabashed cheerleader who sees the town through rose-colored glasses, or a grumpy old curmudgeon filled with dozens of complaints and no solutions. At least not every week.

I’m looking for writers who can tell Springdale’s story, speak with Springdale’s independent community voice. And do it in about 800 words a week.

Are you a Springdale resident who can fill the bill? Have you got something to say about a great town with a fascinating past and promising future, a town that, warts and all, is the best place in the world for you to live?

Then send me a sample of your work. Keep it to about 800 words. Give me your name and contact information. Remember this is a family newspaper. Oh, and — this is important — no politicians.

We’ll publish the best ones in this space over the next few weeks and see where it goes. Eventually, we’d like to find a small group of regular contributors who will get our readers talking around the water cooler, coffee pot, or even over at Bailey’s Barber Shop or that big table at Neal’s.

E-mail submissions to rturner@nwaonline.net. But only send me one column per writer for now. We’ll let you know if we plan to use it and when.

RUSTY TURNER IS THE EXECUTIVE EDITOR OF NORTHWEST ARKANSAS NEWSPAPERS LLC.