You will benefit from meetings

Summer is usually a time that we all try to step back, take a deep breath and try to relax. After spending the first five months of the year chasing the elusive buck in our operations, it is nice to try to make some time for ourselves and our families. That may include a vacation to some out-of-town location or just down-time at home.
With gasoline prices approaching the stratosphere, let me make a couple of suggestions for get-a-ways that won’t cost you a fortune, will be interesting and exciting and will dovetail into your attempt to “get away.”
First, running from June 12-14 will be the Missouri Society of Newspaper Editors/Show-Me Press Association joint meeting. This year’s combination meeting will be held at the Resort at Port Arrowhead, Lake of the Ozarks.
What a perfect location to bring the family, learn some interesting material at the meeting and then enjoy this beautiful resort for the weekend. It’s close to every part of the state and reasonably priced for this meeting. Even if you are not a member of Show-Me Press, you can still learn from their presentations at a very affordable price. And the bonus this year is the program for MSNE.
Then, as if Port Arrowhead were not enough, how about joining the Missouri Press Association in a celebration of the 200th anniversary of the publication of the first newspaper in Missouri in 1808.
MPA, in collaboration with the State Historical Society of Missouri, has commissioned the production of “The Editor is Absent: Tribulation & Triumph in Missouri’s Pioneer Press.” This exciting presentation will play one day only, Saturday, July 12, in Thespian Hall in historic Boonville.
The play will be performed by the Historical Society’s MoHiP Theater (Missouri History in Performance Theater). It was written by Mary Barile and is drawn from actual Mis2008souri Newspapers published in the early to mid 1800’s.
This is something you really won’t want to miss. Tickets are $5 for adults and $2.50 for children under age 10. Contact MPA or send your check to the MPA office in Columbia to get your tickets.
While those events are coming soon, just past are the Southeast Missouri Press Association meeting held in Cape Girardeau on May 30 and the Missouri Advertising Managers’ Association in Branson on May 8 and 9. Both of those programs presented important and interesting information about how we can do our jobs better and enhance our operations. I would commend them to you in the future. These meetings are also close and very economical.
One of the problems all associations — regional, state and national — are facing is declining attendance. This is partially the result of restricted travel budgets. But it is equally the result of the fact that we are all busy. It is hard to take time away from the business to attend meetings.
But I suggest that if this year is a typical example, these meetings are well worth the time and expense they require. So look at your budget and your schedule and see if you can’t make time for your regional association meeting, or an AP or MAMA or ASNE meeting. I think you will find the time well spent.
If you had not guessed by now, I am pushing attendance at MPA sponsored/supported meetings as well as membership in MPA. Both are valuable investments of your time and a few dollars. And both help our  industry and your newspaper. So, if you are not a member, join. If you are a member, attend the meetings offered through the year. You will be richly rewarded.

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