A Celebration of Community Journalism: Carter County Post Ribbon Cutting

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The enticing smells of fresh roasted coffee brewing and yummy cinnamon rolls greeted the crowd who attended the official ribbon cutting of Carter County Post’s new home base office in the Antiques N’ Uniques  store in Grayson, Kentucky February 1, 2020.

The custom blend of coffee, “Carter County Post Roast” was created by Will Stevens of Goose Bridle Coffee Roasters of Grayson.  The rolls were provided by Twin Catering’s Elaine Wiler, who also served the guests.

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Community Journalist and Photographer, Tim Preston said the small office was born of a need to work in a cat-free space, Preston said, as well as to have a public place to conduct business.

“I saw a sign advertising a vendor booth for rent and thought, “That’s more than big enough for a desk and two chairs…maybe even a guitar or two,” he said.  

From that original idea the office space for the CCP became a reality.

The ribbon-cutting ceremony began with the group all holding hands in a prayer circle led by Preston’s good friend and fellow newsman, Kentucky Today’s Mark Maynard.

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 “I personally had tremendous appreciation for the moment we all joined hands for a blessing by Mark, who first bought me into the area as a reporter for a daily newspaper and has been there for me throughout my times of doubt.” said Preston.                                         

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                       Our State Senator Robin Webb gave a short speech.  With Tim saying “It was an honor to have my friend Robin Webb say a few words and encourage community support for Carter County Post and our other projects.”

Tim’s mother, Jetta, drew names from a hat for a variety of door prizes, as his father, Terry, and wife, Alys looked on. Door prizes were provided by Olive Hill’s Henri’s Market & Deli, and Stylish Stitches, as well as Grayson merchants including Kee’s Farm Service, Dixie Lanes and ZZ’s Bar & Grill, Antiques N’ Uniques and Hippo Valley Mission Store, as well as Callihan’s American Pub & Grill of neighboring Boyd County.

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Preston also introduces graphic artist Talmadge Callihan, founder and publisher of Gravely Unusual magazine, who will be designing upcoming magazines, directories and other specialized print projects.

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Gunner Johnson of Olive Hill, a local dirt track racer who writes a race-season weekly “Racing Recap” column for Carter County Post about local racing teams, was also introduced along with up-and-coming race driver Hunter Flaugher. CCP Founder Shadow Skaggs, was also introduced and recognized for making the project a reality.

Preston then said a few words and talked about the CCP’s new venture of a quarterly magazine that will highlight area small businesses entitled “Everybody’s Business- Kentucky’s Small Business Spotlight”.  The magazine, to launch in spring or summer, will be available in print and online.

He also explained the web-site will be adding more content including public information filings, local government coverage, new stories and photos.  Also more local sports coverage will be “ramped up.”

Officers from Olive Hill’s Chamber of Commerce and the Grayson Area Chamber of Commerce welcomed everyone present to participate, and on the county of three cut the yellow ribbon!  

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The celebration continued with guests enjoying refreshments provided by Kathy Hockley and other vendors at Aniques N’ Uniques.

Community Journalist Preston expressed his thoughts saying, “I’m not sure there will ever be another ribbon cutting for a local news office, and have difficulty expressing how crucial it is for anyone attempting to do ‘community journalism’ to have a space like this.  That being said, there is no other place quite like this.  I mean, have you looked around this store?”

He also had a few words about the people who attended:  “Our guests ranged from racers to rockers, bankers and bakers, emerging artists and established professionals, young student leaders and retired civic and community organizers, musicians, school cafeteria staff, attorneys, entrepreneurs and even a hypnotherapist, and that’s not even everyone!”

“To me, that group of people represented exactly the audience I hope to deliver the Carter County Post’s fresh, local stories and photos – at sunrise and other times as I’m able!

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“Michelle Brand is the often uncredited workhorse of the Carter County Post, whose efforts have been a tremendous blessing to everyone involved,” Preston noted.

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Attorney Will Wilhoit, right, whose ad is seen at the top of each and every Carter County Post story and photo gallery, joined Shadow Skaggs and Tim Preston for a photo during Saturday’s celebration.

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Story and Photos by MICHELLE BRAND

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