Archived Story

Michael Bennett: We understand your frustration

Published 3:38pm Thursday, August 1, 2013

When the big blue monster hiccups the newspaper doesn’t print.

As our loyal Dowagiac Daily News and Niles Daily Star readers know, our press had a major hiccup two nights ago.

I missed my first wakeup call but got my second around 4 a.m. yesterday morning from distribution manager Cindy Klingerman, who was coming up with a plan to try to get you your paper. We thought we had it in time for the postal delivery. Not so.

New pressman Doug Sriver started his day at 2 p.m. Tuesday and finished it at 10:45 a.m. Wednesday. His partner last night Clifton Quinn worked side by side with him to get our folder working again.

Long time press guru Levar Collins was called in from a mini-vacation and was able to help get us going.

Thanks also to Martin’s Supermarket for extending their weekly coupon expiration one day. This week it’s a $5 gift certificate when you spend $10.

The folder is still not up to snuff and by the time you are hopefully reading this he will have completed his 11-hour journey to Niles and can sleep a bit before he has to begin repairs. Next we braced ourselves for phone calls.

We appreciate the kindness and understanding we got from most of you.

For those that were really ticked off we understand and still love you. You care passionately about your hometown newspaper.

It was about a year ago this time we were having issues with outdated film processors that got us down.

The worst thing for me to happen in my operation is to have equipment fail. I am all thumbs and have no mechanical aptitude. To complicate things, they don’t stock parts for this press at Lowes.

The good news is that we just invested in new computer to plate technology eliminating film and providing us state of the art technology. This should make life a little easier and improve the quality of our reproduction.

Let’s hope I didn’t get any middle of the night phone calls and you are reading us in a timely manner.

This weekend is Riverfest. Leader Publications has a Dragon Boat. Stop by and see us, we probably will be going pretty slowly.

Michael Bennett is publisher of Leader Publications. He can be reached at or by calling 687-7700.

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