It has been a jam-packed month here at the PRT! We have successfully concluded our annual fundraising campaign, we have taken on the continuation of Clare Bonelli’s local newsletter, have added an extensive COVID resource page to our website and received 54 essays from local students competing in our 2nd annual school essay contest. Our volunteer writers have researched and written articles on issues including the rise of COVID in our area, the continuing construction on the border wall, internet challenges in eastern SCC, women’s suffrage, and one student’s journey from PUHS to an ivy league school. And make sure to check out our center spread honoring this year’s Community Contributors. Whew!!

First, to our generous readers who donated to the PRT during our recent fundraising campaign, we thank you! You have donated $25,050 over the past two months, $15,000 of which will be matched by NewsMatch, a national organization that supports nonprofit newsrooms. Even more impressive, we had 340 individual donations. These donations ensure the future of the PRT and will be used to help us continue to bring you the local news that you depend on us to deliver. 

As part of that commitment, we were thrilled when Clare Bonelli approached us to see if we would be willing to take over her weekly newsletter. We look forward to continuing her work and are honored that she trusts us with this important community resource. We also look forward to welcoming Clare as a member of our editorial team, as she plans to start contributing articles to the PRT. 

Assistant editor Nisa Talavera has been hard at work revamping our website and is adding a COVID resource page that will contain information on where to get vaccinated, testing sites, local updates, and resources for families. We will continue to work on improving our website, with the help of a grant from CatchaFire, over the next several months. 

And a word about our committed group of writers. These individuals volunteer their time and expertise to keep our audience informed and educated about those issues and events that affect our communities. 

One example of this is Sarah Klingenstein, of Patagonia, who has written four articles for this issue, and has put in countless hours interviewing local health officials, school administrators, and local leaders, poring over data and organizing all this material into well written articles full of relevant information. 

Sarah is just one example of our talented and committed PRT family, which includes not only our writers, our Board members and staff, but also all of you that have donated this year. 

We thank you for kicking off 2021 in the best way possible, especially as we emerge from the challenges of 2020. Thank you for your investment in the future of the Patagonia Regional Times because, especially in these tumultuous times, local news matters.