‘Fun & Games’ — and a fresh start

We’re rolling out a new feature this week. A half page of “Fun & Games” that features a crossword puzzle and a Sudoku appears on page 10.  It’s a work in progress; we may tweak it in the weeks to come.  But we sincerely thank the three advertisers (GBC, Club Dauntless and Bar-T Electric) who stepped up to sponsor it this first week.
We aren’t the first newspaper to go down this road.  The Lovell Chronicle has been running crossword puzzles on occasions and the Powell Tribune runs an entire page every week. They started doing it during the Covid crisis, received great feedback and haven’t stopped.
So please let us know what you think.  Adding this half page every week won’t impact our coverage of the community. If anything, it might slightly reduce the number of Wyoming News Exchange stories that we run.  
While we love to be able to share news of statewide interest, we recognize that our bread and butter, our mission, is to deliver the news of Greybull, Shell and Emblem, Big Horn County and, to a lesser degree, the Big Horn Basin.
Hyperlocal is what folks in our industry call it, and if we’re being honest, it’s the only way that small newspapers like ours are going to survive.
That was one of the messages that came across loud and clear at last weekend’s Wyoming Press Association convention in Casper, where speaker after speaker urged us to engage our communities to find out what they want to see in their newspapers.
In the end, of course, it’s the opinion of our readers that matters most. The Standard is your newspaper. Those of us who work here are simply the gatekeepers, the lucky ones who get to try to figure out the best way to fill 1,260, 1,515 or 1,764 column inches of black and white real estate every week.
So, with that in mind, we want to hear from you in the weeks to come.  January is a natural time to regroup, to reflect on what we are and what we wish to become. So, let’s do it. Not for this writer, but for the oldest business in town.
What would you like to see more of in the newspaper?  What could we cut back on?  In general, how can we make the newspaper more appealing to you? E-mail your thoughts and suggestions to greybullstandard.press@gmail.com.  
Think of the “Fun & Games” as you begin to ponder those questions and whether to interact.  We’ve had people drop hints from time to time, saying a game page is something they’d like to see.  We listened and are delivering. And we’ll do it again. But the only way this works is if we hear from you.
— Nathan Oster