The hope was that you liked us, that you really liked us. That you valued what we do, not only bringing necessary news to the forefront of conversation, but also our dedicated coverage of Cincinnati’s food, music, arts and culture scenes — our entertaining jaunts and deep dives into all of the people, places and things that add up to make the Queen City whole.
When the coronavirus hit Ohio, it hit us hard. Bars, restaurants, museums and music venues were forced to close, making difficult decisions about their own revenue streams, and we felt the financial strain. We had to furlough staffers, cut back on freelance and rethink our business model to continue our mission as an altweekly. And some reporters, like our News Editor Nick Swartsell, theater critics Rick Pender and Jackie Mulay and music writer Brian Baker, among many others, have been volunteering their time and writing to help us do just that.
So when we launched the Press Club and asked the public for support, we weren’t sure what was going to happen. But as of today, you have donated $21,644, and 119 of you have signed up to make recurring contributions. To say we are humbled and grateful would be an understatement.
We wouldn’t be here without you. And we wouldn’t want to be.
Thanks to you, we are now able to have conversations about bringing back a couple of editorial staffers part-time. And we will be able to continue imperative coverage of Cincinnati’s city budget process, discussions on how to address racial disparities in policing, local Black Lives Matter protests and how federal LGBTQ+ advancements are impacting policy at home. We will also continue our COVID-19 coverage and continue to highlight local businesses that are reopening — or just plain opening — as they work their way back from the pandemic. And focus on our arts institutions, attractions, theaters and museums as they do the same.
Thank you for supporting CityBeat, really. We appreciate every single one of you and your help to keep our reporting free, local and independent. We are here to serve the public, and you have made sure we can continue to do that.
If you haven’t joined the CityBeat Press Club and want to, go to citybeat.com/support-local-journalism.
It means everything to us.
— Maija Zummo, Editor in Chief, and the CityBeat team