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A Major Milestone: 1,000 Articles!

Long Valley Patch celebrates the first of many achievements.

Milestones are meant to be celebrated, and that’s my focus for this column. I usually don’t write opinion pieces two weeks in a row (see last week’s ), but I can’t overlook what’s gone on at Long Valley Patch.

As this past week came to a close, Long Valley Patch officially published its 1,000th  article!

One thousand! A grand! A ‘G’! 1K!

And to me, that’s just incredible.

Let’s break it down real quick. It’s been approximately 190 days since the , back on Sept. 24, 2010. Simple math says Long Valley Patch–on average–has produced slightly more than five original articles everyday during that time span.

As the site’s editor, I can’t tell you how proud that makes me.

While my face is at the top of the page and my contact information is prominent, this site and its success could not be possible without the awesome support and tireless work of all those who’ve contributed to it.

Excuse the Academy Award thank you speech that is going to follow, but it needs to be done.

The reporters and photographers who hear from me on a daily basis, via phone, email and text message–at all hours of the day or night–have been amazing. They’ve dealt with my frantic, “What are you doing right now–I need you to cover this?!?!” screams, in addition to my absent-minded, “We agreed to do that how long ago? OK, sounds great to me!” remarks.

Much thanks to , Long Valley resident and contributor who has been creating original pieces about history, spirituality and our neighbors since the site launched.

Gratitude must also be extended to –another Long Valley native, and  contributor who’s been on board since October. Gerard has covered everything from fencing to local music and municipal meetings.

And I can’t forget my photographers, who’ve gone just about anywhere and done just about anything for Long Valley Patch, much of which was on a last second basis. has spent more time over the past few months at than he did when he was a student there. And ability to just get the job done has never made me feel calmer when . Remember all that snow we got this winter? roamed the streets of Long Valley on multiple occasions to see who was or .

While we Local Editors of individual community sites don’t exactly sit next to each other each day at work (we operate and live within our towns), we communicate with each other in a virtual sense, and meet up at least once a week. My immediate group of colleagues, Brendan Kuty of Hopatcong Patch, Sue Toth of Jefferson Patch, John Dunphy of Morristown Patch, and Kathy Shaskan of Morris Township-Morris Plains Patch, have all helped in some way or another to lend vision and support to Long Valley Patch.

And just like any news desk, there needs to be a higher-ranking editor to give guidance, strategy and help to those who need it. Our group’s Regional Editor, Lou Hochman (who's comments you’ve seen on the home page from time to time), is an integral part of making our sites run as smoothly as they do. So thanks to my colleagues in the ‘disjointed’ Patch newsroom.

So, if a company rolls out a product, but no one is there to consume it, will it survive?

Long Valley Patch has no intention–or indication–to go anywhere any time soon. And because of that, my last–but certainly not least–thank you must go to the readers of this community news site.

Without you coming back day in and day out, telling your friends and neighbors, and even former neighbors, about us, we wouldn’t be here writing this today. As I’ve said since the beginning, this site is for you, the readers and residents of Washington Township.

We’re here to inform you of what’s going on, why it’s happening, and learn more about what we can do to better serve our neighbors’ information needs. So please, continue to enjoy Long Valley Patch, and continue to contribute your events, announcements, photos and stories with us. .

With you, the next 1,000 articles will be even better than the first. Thanks again!

judi April 03, 2011 at 04:24 PM
CONGRATS!!!! Keep up the good work - great source of info !!
MaryLynn Schiavi April 04, 2011 at 01:25 PM
I am honored to have the opportunity to contribute articles to Long Valley Patch. I moved to Long Valley in 1999 and didn't learn so much about the town until I began writing about it six months ago. This area is extraordinarily beautiful and I have enjoyed exploring its history and getting to know the people who live here who also have a deep and abiding appreciation for this very special land. I also want to note that Jason Koestenblatt is without a doubt, the nicest, most considerate person I have ever dealt with in my 30 years as a professional communicator. He treats people with extraordinary respect and fairness. How different our world would be if editors and managers around the world moved forward with the same high-minded principles, good natured humor, and compassion that Jason brings to his work and his life everyday. Writing for Patch has been an enriching experience! Warm wishes, MaryLynn

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