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To Friends and supporters,

As we celebrate the holiday season, we have much to be thankful for — including the wonderful outpouring of community support for tenacious and meaningful watchdog journalism.

Glen Rock News Today has been a thread of Glen Rock since its conception in 2014. Originally it was known as Banana Tree News. This name was based on the “famous” Banana Tree in Kilroy’s Wonder Market. You probably know Kilroy’s Wonder Market has had a Banana Tree in its store for over 100 years. For those years, even when the tree has been moved, people would gather around and exchange town news and gossip.

Why did I start Banana Tree News?

I grew up in Glen Rock, NJ and graduated GRHS in 1988.  When I was still living in Glen Rock I was very involved with GRVAC and the Glen Rock Pool.

Over the years, I have continued to want to know what is happening in the home town I love.  Anyone who has lived in Glen Rock knows it is a distinctive family and community oriented small town despite being in a vast suburban environment.  I and many other former Glen Rockers used to follow and blog on The Glen Rock Patch. I loved how local it was.  When the Patch started to merge with Ridgewood, and then AOL sold it,. it lost its focus.  Because of this I wanted to recreate a web site similar to what we had a few years ago with the patch, but keep it focused strictly on Glen Rock.  Since then we have grown to become one of the only quality sources of  all local news and events.  In the hopes of expanding, we rebranded to Glen Rock News Today.

What now?

Local nonprofit independent media outlets like ours face significant challenges. We frankly struggle with resources and could certainly use another couple of capable reporters digging into what goes on in this town. Glen Rock NEEDS this!

It takes a lot of energy and scrappiness to uphold the high quality of our reporting.

And it takes money. Our staff are talented professionals, some with decades of experience in investigative and community journalism. And maintaining our computers, website, cameras, replacing worn-out shoe leather and putting gas in trucks for trips through the town adds to our costs.

To make things work, we rely on readers like you to become subscribers. That’s how glenrocknews.today needs your help.

We are expanding into print. With our local print going down hill, we see an opportunity to fulfill the need of our town. This means bringing back the community schedule, Letters to the Editors, Sports, pictures of your kids involved and much more.

On January 12, 2018.  The Glen Rock News Today will launch its inaugural print edition. It will be available at many locations in town to pick up. IF you would like it hand delivered, you can subscribe to it and we will porch deliver your paper.

Our ultimate goal is to go print weekly. This is dependent on your support and story contributions.


Here’s what’s scary

With the challenges we face as a community, and the heated partisan rhetoric about which set of “facts” to believe, there’s never been a more urgent need for independent, transparent and vigilant local reporting. And sadly, chain media outlets run by companies headquartered thousands of miles away have demonstrated that they’re not going to invest more in our town. They’re just going to continue to cut.

You may not know that there are hundreds of journalists who are no longer reporting, compared to a decade ago. There are only about half as many newspaper journalists in this country than a decade ago. Layoffs and shutdowns at chain newspapers and TV stations mean there are many fewer watchdogs looking out for us than a decade ago. Even as our community is growing, our press is shrinking dramatically.

That’s why it’s even more important to have journalism here that’s invested in the success and future of this community.

And it’s why we have big plans to expand our reach, deepen our reporting, and increase the impact of authentically local news this year and next — but we need help from the community right now.

I know an informed community is important to you, and that you understand the consequences when watchdogs lose their teeth and are muzzled. We can’t make wise decisions as a community without having solid, relevant information. That requires a healthy press — and that requires readers who recognize the value we deliver in making everyone in this town a little bit smarter.

We’re committed to making quality news accessible; we’ll never set up a paywall or charge for our site. But we rely on your support to bring you, your neighbors and everyone else in Glen Rock independent news without the spin.

Thanks for reading, and for your support of quality, nonpartisan local reporting.


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