By Robert Phelps, appeared in the Southwest Times Record on Monday, October 10, 2016
I believe the people within the sphere of influence of the Times Record are extremely well served by this exceptional community asset. Time after time I have enjoyed following the paper’s supporting stories of individuals, groups and organizations that are devoted to improving the appearance and quality of life of Fort Smith, Van Buren and other surrounding communities.
Most recently, I applaud the coverage of the certification of Keep Fort Smith Beautiful as a Keep America Beautiful community affiliate and the scenic beautification accomplished by its predecessor, Beautify Fort Smith. The articles, reported by Thomas Saccente, were most impressive; I can’t recall any press representative showing more genuine interest in and support of a community improvement group like he demonstrated.
Equally appreciated is the continuing helpful attention and positive reporting that has been afforded to Keep Van Buren Beautiful, which recently celebrated its 10th year as a Keep America Beautiful affiliate. I firmly believe that the publicity and recognition the Times Record has provided KVBB has helped immeasurably in attracting awareness and participation to their efforts in transforming their community attractiveness.
By highlighting the efforts and successes of these community environmental improvement organizations, your newspaper encourages civic pride which often stimulates increased volunteerism by appreciative citizens who want to make their area more livable, more attractive to visitors, investors and new residents, more vibrant, cleaner and sustainable. As you share this good news with readers and viewers and raise awareness of beautification efforts, you are also performing a valuable civic contribution and economic benefit to the community. Read more.