The 15th Annual Dragon Arts Fair is this coming Saturday, June 1. The fair will be shifting its location from downtown Market Street to across the tracks into DeForest Fireman’s Park. Many artists have reserved their spots and will be showing their creations at this fair. There will be the popular art auction and also some free entertainment. There are many new offerings for food and drink at this year’s fair.

The fair started in 2004 on Market Street in front of the DeForest Area Public Library in the shadow of the carved Norwegian Dragons on the roof of the library and that’s where the name of the fair comes from. The event has grown in popularity over the years and this new location is still close to its original location and yet offers more space for more exhibitors and growing crowds.

Hours of the fair will be 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Proceeds will go towards offering scholarships to DeForest Area High School students planning arts related education after high school.

I TOOK A DRIVE TO DOWNTOWN WAUNAKEE a couple of Fridays ago to see how the DeForest Times-Tribune staff was adjusting to their new work quarters. The editorial staffs for the DeForest, Waunakee, Lodi and Poynette newspapers are all working together in what used to be the Waunakee Tribune office. The brick building is just off Main Street and near the old depot in the center of town. The street address is 105 South Street. The last time I was in this office was about 12 years ago just before I retired from the newspaper business.

The first face I saw as I walked through the front door was Sam Rodriguez, Sports Editor of the Times-Tribune. Then I spotted Times-Tribune Managing Editor Peter Lindblad at his computer. The only other person in the office that Friday afternoon was Roberta Baumann, Managing Editor of the Waunakee Tribune. The other newspaper staff workers were out on assignments so the office was pretty quiet. As a rule Friday afternoons in weekly newspaper offices are pretty quiet. Early in the week everyone is in the office racing to beat their deadlines, the papers are printed on Wednesday and distributed on Thursday. Friday is a day to catch up and work on stories and interviews outside the office. I remember the schedule well.

I had a nice visit with Roberta, Peter and Sam and was filled in on how the new office setting works. Gone are the days of ‘cut and paste’ newspaper layout. Today all pages are laid out on computers by the editorial staff. The ads are pulled in from a remote graphic design and lay out office and put into the pages with the news. The finished layouts are sent electronically to Janesville where the paper is printed. After printing, the new editions of the Times-Tribune are brought to DeForest where they are mailed and distributed. That’s quite a change from how it was done when I ran the newspaper.

A few months back Adams Publishing Group bought the Hometown News Group from the Knox family of Fort Atkinson. One of the changes made under the new management was to consolidate three or four newspaper staffs under one roof. The Waunakee Office is the main office for this area. One office housing four newspapers makes good economic sense. That said, I know that some folks were upset when the local newspaper office was taken off Main Street in their town and put into a Waunakee location.

I think Peter is doing a good job of being present at many DeForest and Windsor functions with notebook and camera in hand. Sam has been covering DeForest sports events since he was a student reporter at DeForest High School. While I miss not seeing the DeForest Times-Tribune office in town, I’m happy that I can read all of the local news in our own hometown newspaper every week. Keep reading the DeForest Times-Tribune so I can keep reminiscing about “the good ole days.”

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