The Ferndale 115 News is updated online as news happens in our city, with special updates on the first and fifteenth of each month, hence the "one-fifteen" name. We started in June 2009 with a semi-monthly online paper that has grown from 184 unique readers to over 1,200 each issue. On April 1, 2010 we converted to daily updates and readership jumped to over 2,000.
Our goal is to inform, inspire and unite the people of Ferndale. By encouraging readers to learn as much as they can about our community, we hope to give people the tools to be more active, to know what is going on, and to be able to appreciate the benefits of shopping locally and caring about your neighbors. We also hope to show people outside of Ferndale how great our community is, and to draw more home buyers and investors to our city. We hope to improve communications for all businesses, groups and departments so that everyone can make more informed, cooperative decisions. We also hope to preserve the history of our community so that we can all be more appreciated and remembered.
Our goal is to become a community-supported newspaper with a blend of advertising and reader support. Traditional newspapers rely on advertising for revenue, which puts papers in the position of gearing their coverage towards what businesses want, rather than what may be the most informative for readers. Additionally reader supporters can feel good knowing that our only bias is our love for Ferndale and the desire for good communication - not just a desire to make money. However, for this to work, readers must understand the value of a free press and be willing to invest in it for themselves, their neighbors and the children growing up in this community. Please go to www.ferndale115.com/readersupport.html to contribute.
Editor and Publisher (and reporter) Crystal a. Proxmire can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Proxmire grew up on Orchard Street. She was raised by a single father and spent a lot of time at Franks Nursery & Crafts where her dad was a manager. She developed good interviewing skills by conversing with grownups in the break room, and a good writing ethic by passing the long hours at the store with writing stories and designing homemade magazines with craft items stolen from the shelves. In elementary school she petitioned the city to clean up Vester Park, started Clark Elementary's first school paper - News 2 U from 202 (room 202), started a class-wide sit-in to protest kickball teams being segregated by gender, and nearly got suspended for producing a class-play with an unintentionally-controversial storyline (based on teen pregnancy). At Webb Jr. High and Hazel Park High School she continued being an activist, a writer and a hard-worker. In 11th grade when National Honor Society questioned the whether her working as a shift manager at White Castle was enough "leadership experience" to warrant membership, so she started her own group for students to volunteer regardless of what their education or experience. The Hazel Park Care Club raised money to build a new marquee, held a book drive, and showed the anyone could help the school, not just smart kids or kids popular enough to be elected to a leadership position. After that, NHS let her in. She also had to fight school administration to be the first female to take an auto body class at The Oakland Technical Center. She won the school's English Award for 1997.
She went to Grand Valley State and earned her BS in Advertising and Public Relations, and nearly completed a minor in political science, but the death of her father and the financial hardships that followed forced her to wrap up college sooner than she'd planned. She had taken journalism and photography classes, and studied everything she could think of that might help her become a better writer. After a brief success as an advertising account manager, she decided that she didn't want to spend her creative energy trying to get as much money as possible from clients. She spent her 20s working third shift at hotels and using the free time to write. She completed two novels, and has got another three in progress. She has also co-authored a guidebook on transgendered males, and has purchased the rights to her own publishing company. In 2005 she began getting freelance work, and eventually decided that the Internet would be a great way to do a newspaper. She started The Muskegon 115 News, which was a more simple form of the newspaper she has now in Ferndale. On June 1, 2009 the first issue of The Ferndale 115 News hit the web. Now there are over 2,000 unique readers each month, and the paper continues to grow in content, readership and support.
Proxmire lives in South Central Ferndale and can often be seen walking or riding about town. That's because she is dirt poor and spends all of her free time working on the newspaper. With your support Crystal can have a car come winter. She also does freelance marketing work and enjoys cooking, gardening and any kind of exploring. Her goal is to travel the world with her writing skills, learning all she can and teaching others how to overcome troubles, get involved in their communities, and to be happy.