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      Ontonagon Herald maintains presence in community despite a paperless culture

      Itâ??s been a staple in Ontonagon County for 133 years. The weekly newspaper, the Ontonagon Herald, has managed to remain consistent despite tumultuous times in the countyâ??s history.

      Head staff writer Bruce Johanson has been writing for the paper for about 18 years and recalls writing about everything from the closing of the White Pine Mine, the paper mill fire, the consolidation of the school district, and even new businesses popping up over time.

      â??This whole area has been a rollercoasterâ??up and down, and up and downâ??but from the past time to the present, you can say that there always was and always will be an Ontonagon of some sort,â?? he said.

      Johanson is just one of two staff writers for Herald, the other being reporter Victoria James.

      James said they cover anything and everything, from township meetings, to community theater, to human interest stories.

      â??We will go from one end of the county to the other end of the county to cover stories, whatever is important, whatever people think is important or what theyâ??d like to see in the paper, we will go and take a look at it and we will write it up,â?? said James.

      They plan to keep it that way. Though it can be difficult to maintain a newspaper in an increasingly paperless culture, Johanson and James are confident the Herald will remain key piece in the county.

      â??Itâ??s still relevant. I think it still has something to say,â?? said James. â??Itâ??s a place for people to get information every week, and with everything else in town, itâ??s something to hold on to.â??

      â??Yes, people drive farther to get to things, the big stores are shut down, a lot of the mom-and-pop stores, but we have a friendly community, and no one comes into this town as a stranger who doesnâ??t leave as a friend,â?? added Johanson.