See you around, Aylmer!
It’s been a pleasure working for this community’s newspaper for close to five years, but the time has come for me to say goodbye.
In my time at the Bulletin, I’ve covered many events, such as Zellers’ closure, the double-murder on Terrasse Eardley, and the demolition of St. Paul’s Church, but I will always remember my first assignment after I was hired in the summer of 2012.
With my pen, notepad, and small camera, I headed to La Brass to cover a series of rock music shows. This was my baptism by fire. As I sat down and jotted down notes at the local drinking hole, I stopped and looked around, asking myself, “Where am I!?” But I carried on, interviewing some musicians, snapping several pictures.
The following week, my article was published and I started receiving more invitations to attend shows at La Brass. I knew then that this family-run paper was one of Aylmer’s cornerstones.
It did not take long for me to see just how attached the community is to their bilingual weekly. One just needs to look at the letters pages to figure this out. The readership is involved and connected, to the point some believe it’s practically their right to have “their Bulletin” delivered to their door. It goes to show just how much this paper means to the people of Aylmer.
This gave me a great sense of pride to be working for an independent newspaper which strives to cover meaningful news items and avoid sensationalism and triviality. In other words, the journalism adage “if it bleeds, it leads” doesn’t apply here.
Working as a reporter in Aylmer allowed me to meet incredible people and permitted me to build strong relationships with readers and with colleagues. I realized that Aylmer is blessed to have so many people here who work countless hours to help out fellow residents and make life a little more enjoyable. It’s true the service clubs in Aylmer are not what they used to be, but there are still many associations that are doing amazing things, including this local paper, the Bulletin.
Aylmer is lucky to still have its local paper and, as the city continues to evolve, it needs, more than ever, a strong community voice. There are so many ongoing projects and files, like the library, public transit, the marina, just to name a few, that would be lost without the Bulletin’s reporting.
Going forward, the population needs to know that times are difficult for all newspapers, but especially for small, independent community papers. For those who care about their local paper, the time to support the Bulletin is now. Tell your mayor and councillors, MNA and MP, and tell your local shop owners!
Well, there you go . . . I hope I was able to keep you informed about your dynamic community over the years. I know I made some mistakes and poor judgement calls, but know that my intentions were genuine. If ever you see me strolling on rue Principale, don’t hesitate to say hi! It will be a pleasure to chat with you about what’s up in Aylmer!