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Lansing Star 15 Year Anniversary

Dateline July 22, 2005 - After a summer of consulting local community leaders and online experimentation the Lansing Star Online launched it's first issue, which featured the landmark Rogues Harbor Inn, an interview with then Lansing Schools Athletic Director Ed Redmond, a report on an controversial cell tower approval, and a new Harry Potter book at the Lansing Library (it was Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince).  That began what we hoped would be a five year run to match the tenure of our predecessor, the Lansing Community News.  Matthew Shulman, the editor of that paper which had ceased publication five years earlier, contributed our first editorial, figuratively handing over the baton to us.

He wrote, "To Lansing Star publishers, Karen and Dan Veaner, we offer our heartfelt wish that their enterprise be faithful and successful. To the Lansingites who will benefit from their efforts, we urge you to manifest your support of their efforts in every concrete way possible: letters, news tips, articles and financial aid. When Aline and I shuttered the Lansing Community News in 2000, a great part of our regret was that Lansing was again dependent on regional rather than local coverage. That local coverage is present once more."

Wednesday was the official anniversary of that first issue, making this the 15th anniversary issue.  So much has happened in Lansing in these 15 years, much of which nobody could have imagined.  What nobody really saw coming was a global pandemic that would change the way the world has to work.  Yet, after a short pause plucky little Lansing picked up where it left off, like many communities adapting to the new normal. And, unlike many communities, in good financial shape to face the future.

When the pandemic hit I thought that would be the end of the Lansing Star.  I am in a vulnerable demographic, so I was not keen to leave the house.  Somehow I managed to crank out weekly issues without leaving the house for four months and counting.  There were actually two exceptions: I went to take pictures of the Lansing teacher's parade, and to cover the anti-police brutality rally in South Lansing.  Otherwise, the fact that our governments and local attractions have also been forced to stay in and do what they do online has made it possible to continue.

If you are confused by the volume and issue numbers of this week's Star: v16i30, we number the Star issues by year.  That's why this issue is not v15i1.  We started in July, so there were only 24 issues in 2005.  Since then we have cranked out 48 Friday issues per year.

Each year I make a point of thanking our volunteer contributors, who, over the years have provided sports reports, advice columns, cartoons, wedding planning advice, opinions, among other topics.  Currently we have only one, but what a great one!  This issue has Casey Stevens's 133rd 'Thoughts' column.  Judging from reader response, some love what he has to say, some hate it, but he makes us all think about the word and history and our place in it.  During the lockdown Casey, whose Internet access depends on the Trumansburg Library being open, has been faithfully calling in his columns every week, and has been very kind in accepting my not entirely successful editing of the AI-generated transcription of his dictation.  Thank you Casey and all the folks who have contributed to make the Star a truly community-based newspaper.

I'll leave you with this bit of Star trivia.  When we were naming the newspaper in January of 2005 we wrote down a number of names like Lansing Times, Lansing Tribune, Lansing Herald, and so on, and checked for the availability of dot com domain names.  Of the few that were actually available, was the best one, so we grabbed it... and the rest is history.

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