About the Valley Bugler
Our readers and advertisers tell us that we provide a refreshingly different alternative to traditional newspapers. Featuring Good News, Inspirational Stories, Funnies, Community Events and an Occasional Tall Tale.
The Valley Bugler publication rose out of the ashes of the “Castle Rock Advocate”, just about ten years ago. Candy and Bill Richey started up a small quarterly mailer highlighting the local businesses through advertising and short feature stories, called the Mt. St.Helens Valley Bugler. Running ad rates were so affordable, the advertisers encouraged Candy and Bill to take the Valley Bugler to a monthly publication.
“I grew up in the newsprint media industry. My dad was a news media mogul, and I grew up in the advertising and newsprint world. It just seemed like second nature to me,” Candy said.
So, the Valley Bugler went to a monthly, and has been successful ever since. Candy and Bill kept their rates low, fair and affordable for the ‘common joe’. Many of their advertisers are not even able to run advertising in the Daily News because of the sky-high rates. They find that the community monthly papers offer lower rates and great readership, too.
Candy and Bill focused the Valley Bugler newspaper around Good News, community events, inspirational stories, their infamous funnies and of course, the occasional tall tale. This proved a successful formula for both the Richeys and their advertisers, so it was one that continued for many years.
Nearing retirement age, Candy and Bill put the Valley Bugler up for sale, and a new couple then took it over. Enter Michelle and Oscar Myre, ten year residents of the Longview/Kelso area, where the paper office was currently located.
The transition took place in October 2007, and has been a wonderful partnership with new energy and ideas.
“The Myre’s were the perfect fit to keep the vision and dream of the Valley Bugler alive through publishing Good News, and they were young enough to ensure that new vitality and energy and flair would infuse into the publication as well. We were very picky with who we chose.” said Candy Richey, concerning the transfer of ownership.
“We’ve read the Valley Bugler for years, and when the opportunity presented itself, we just knew that it was meant to be,” said Michelle Myre, Publisher and Editor.
Some readers were nervous, some advertisers a bit nervous, but everything transitioned smoothly, according to Myre. “There were a few rough months, where I was learning the ropes, and all the names, and of course how to publish a paper! The letters poured in, with overwhelming support, and we are thrilled with the encouragement we continue to hear from our readers and advertisers. It is a great privilege and honor to produce a muchly loved publication for over 40,000 readers each month!” Michelle said.
Celebrating their one year anniversary of ownership, Oscar and Michelle have high hopes for the continued success of their little community newspaper.
“It’s not even really “little”, when you think about how many papers are out there each month, and how many readers we have! It’s quite humbling,” said Oscar Myre, Co-Editor and Graphic Designer.
The demand for more papers has increased, and there are developments in the process to increase circulation and readership.
There have been questions about the stability of the paper since the 2008 economic recession, which have been completely unfounded, according to both Myres.
“In a time of slow economic growth, and even in recession, the most important thing businesses should do is advertise. Most are beginning to see this as an important aspect in their business, and it is benefiting not only our paper, but our advertisers as well. Our readers trust our advertisers, as well they should – we don’t let just any business advertise. They must have a good reputation and good business practices, or we will absolutely not promote their business in our paper. Who we allow to advertise says a lot about our publication, and we intend to keep that reputation on the positive side of things,” says Michelle.
The Valley Bugler has enjoyed new life to its design, content and overall appeal to the general public, but has kept the same Good News format, which aligns closely with what both Michelle and Oscar Myre believe.
“Who needs to read MORE bad news?”, states Oscar.
In their vision for the future, the Myres have released a new online web site, which encourages reader comments, and an easy to navigate article gallery. Continuing improvements for the web site to encourage larger readership traffic and other areas of “modernizing” the paper will come into play, also.
Overall, the Valley Bugler will always be known for its Good News, Inspirational Stories, Community Events and Funnies. We hope that you enjoy this publication, and look forward to the future with this paper!