On November 11, OLLI members had the opportunity to take a Learning Trip to the Peoria Journal Star. Tour guides for the day were Rae Anne Hamp and Bernie Drake, our own OLLI President. The building, equipment, and staff have changed quite a bit over the years, but the Peoria Journal Star's dedication to bring quality news to the Peoria area has remained the same.
OLLI members were also able to talk with Phil Jordan, Marketing Manager. Phil said that the local newspaper is in good financial shape, and described the huge impact its readership actually has on the community. Despite the fact that a lot of people are concerned with the future of the newspaper business, he said, more people are reading the Journal Star today then 20 years ago. Many readers, however, are now using their phones and other electronic devices to catch articles online. As a result, the Peoria Journal Star is adjusting some of their marketing and advertising efforts.
Our guides directed us through the print shop to show the computer control room, ink and paper storage, and of course the 4-story press! At the end of the day, members took a peek into the newsroom and offices, and spoke with an editor about the process of a story getting published. The tour ended with a discussion led by Mike Bailey and Dennis Anderson regarding their perspectives on the news business and the future of print journalism.
OLLI would like to thank the Peoria Journal Star and their amazing staff!