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Newspaper staffs move to Coupeville Wednesday
The Whidbey News-Times and South Whidbey Record will move into new, shared office space in Coupeville on Wednesday, March 31.
The News-Times’ office on Barrington Drive in Oak Harbor will shut down at the regular 5 p.m. closing time on Tuesday. The South Whidbey Record office in Bayview will close at 3 p.m.
The new office space on the south side of Coupeville, in the Coupe’s Village development, is scheduled to open at about 10 a.m. Wednesday morning.
“We will announce a grand opening after everything is unpacked,” said Marcia Van Dyke, publisher of both newspapers. “We hope the community will come visit us in our new home.”
The move will have little impact on newspaper readers or the community.
The two Sound Publishing-owned newspapers will remain separate news entities that cover the different communities of Whidbey Island. There are no plans to change from twice-weekly newspapers with meaty local coverage. The newspapers will continue to have a strong presence in Oak Harbor and the South Whidbey communities.
The move into a single space will, however, allow the newspapers to share resources in a more efficient manner. It will ensure the viability of the community newspapers in challenging times for the industry.
Whidbey News-Times editor Jim Larsen accepted the position this month as supervising editor of both newspapers, which means he will coordinate news coverage in the two papers. Brian Kelly will continue as editor of the South Whidbey Record.
“With our move to the new Coupeville office, the two newsrooms will share the same space. I believe that Jim’s leadership will help to provide the healthy teamwork environment necessary for our success,” Van Dyke said.
Larsen is no stranger to South Whidbey. He was editor at the South Whidbey Record when Sound Publishing purchased the Record in 1988. He served as editor and publisher at the South Whidbey Record for the next 13 years and has been in his current position as editor of the Whidbey News-Times for eight years.
“Jim’s experience in both markets prepares him well for his new role with the company,” Van Dyke said.
Each newspapers’ telephone number will remain the same. For The South Whidbey Record, call 221-5300, and for The Whidbey News-Times call 675-6611. The lines should be working Wednesday morning.