WINSTED, Conn. (WTNH)- Just as other newspapers have abandoned local coverage, longtime consumer advocate and Winsted native Ralph Nader has plans for a new weekly newspaper that will serve Winsted and nearby Farmington Valley communities.
“It’s what used to be your local weekly newspaper-plus a little more,” said Andy Thibault, a veteran journalist who will be The Winsted Citizen’s editor and publisher. They are hoping to recapture the energy of local print journalism in the era of digital news.
Nader and Thibault hope a pilot edition to be published this winter will determine “the level of community support needed to make it a regular weekly publication.” Nader is providing financial support for the first edition, but the paper is looking for advertising support and paid subscriptions from readers, Thibault said.
In addition to covering a wide range of topics like business, sports, and government, the paper will also incorporate more localized sections such as wedding announcements, something that has been lost in recent decades.
When gauging the interest of the community, Thibault found that “people are very hungry for local news.”
The Winsted Citizen will reach the residents of Winsted, Hartland, Riverton, Colebrook, Norfolk, and New Hartford.
“If it’s important to you, it’s important to us,” Thibault said. “You can tell the health of the community by the health of its newspaper.”
In a tech driven world, the paper will focus on print. Distribution hubs will include various local businesses, along with a home delivery system. The paper will, however, also hold a digital presence, according to Thibault.
“I’m just helping get The Winsted Citizen started,” said Nader, “The paper will have editorial independence in service of the community.”
The publication will be officially announced by Nader and Thibault at the Greenwoods Country Club on Tuesday, Jan. 3 at noon during a meeting of the Rotary Club of The Torrington and Winsted Areas.