The Kiwanis Club of Grinnell gathered on Tuesday, March 4, for regular business at the Bistro in the Buckley Hall, Mayflower Community. The featured speaker was Peggy Elliott with the Grinnell Herald-Register, who provided historical and current perspective on literacy, traditions, and local newspapers. She began the conversation explaining America’s love for newspapers and literacy as such an important element of our country that it’s enshrined in the constitution. The tradition of newspapers and a value for literacy spread throughout the Midwest as it was settled in the 1800s.
In Grinnell, three newspapers were published in the community in the early 1900s, demonstrating the community’s love for news and local information. Elliott discussed the unique architecture of two buildings in downtown where the basement is partially above ground due to the large presses on the first floor and the need for natural light. She recapped the history of her family in purchasing and merging the Grinnell Herald and the Grinnell Register in 1944.
Elliott describes a local newspapers as a binding agent for a community. It helps make a community. She proceeded to share several examples of the value of local newspapers in people’s lives. A newspaper devoted to providing local news helps define how a community sees itself and gives a sense of pride.
Even in the “new” media realm, the local newspaper provides a depth and breadth of news that the social media and broadcast media can’t complete. An educated community uses all media to fill its needs. Elliott concluded her program by answering questions from Kiwanis members.
Individuals interested in attending a Kiwanis meeting are invited to a regular meeting held on Tuesdays at 12 noon, at the Bistro, located in Buckley Hall, Mayflower Community. For more information, please call the Kiwanis president, Dick Gustafson, at 236-5603.