Based on the responses from the panel, the audience for my proposed publication is middle class adults aged 30-60. A majority of these people have children currently or have children who recently moved out of the house. The school system, children and how these two groups affect the community were mentioned multiple times throughout the panel. While families seem to populate Cazenovia, however, there seemed to be a need for news directed to single people in their 30s or those who no longer have children that live in Cazenovia. They are a smaller part of the population, but one that should not be excluded.
Many people on the panel said they moved to Cazenovia because it was a picturesque town in the middle of two cities. It seemed as if most residents travel to Syracuse or Oneida for work, but they wanted to raise their family in a community as school-oriented as Cazenovia. The word “community” could not have arisen more in the conversations among panel members. Although some complained the town sometimes appeared unrealistically perfect, I feel they truly liked having the safe environment to raise their children. From policing style to community activities based around school goings-on, the family and community rule in Cazenovia.
Along with not wanting to raise their children in a more urban setting like Syracuse, many moved to the area for the nature and surroundings. The list of outdoor activities in which Cazenovians partake was almost endless, and not even the harsh winters can keep these citizens from enjoying the beautiful outdoors. The audience is therefore a very active one, interested in both nature but also activities that are occurring outdoors. The lake is the center of the community throughout all seasons but particularly in the summer. I had visions of the entire town gathering by the water during the summertime at all hours of the day; fishermen enjoying fishing at dawn, children playing at the beach at noon and couples watching the sunset at dusk.
The nature-loving, active community branches into the strong artistic scene in Cazenovia. Many artists have taken residence in the town. There is also a combination of art and nature, as one influences the other, and the two clash at places such as the Art Park. Finally, Cazenovia residents have a strong tie to history and to each other. A town with a long past, the citizens seem to have an interest in learning about not only the past of the town, but also a strong desire to know about the people currently living among them.
Based on this analysis of the audience, I propose a weekly newspaper for the residents of Cazenovia. The panel did not feel there was enough information to sustain a daily paper. There was also only a small majority who said that they currently read a paper every day. Instead, there was more of an interest in a larger Sunday paper that could be enjoyed on their day off over a morning cup of coffee (or standing in their kitchen, as one panel member noted).
Although many members of the community commute, they will most likely not be traveling to work on the day the paper comes out. Therefore, there is no need for a smaller format size, and the Cazenovia paper will be the traditional tabloid-sized paper.
The newspaper will be influenced by nature, both in color and feel. I envision the blue and green are major colors to reflect the lake and land of Cazenovia. It will also incorporate white space to further the open freeness of being outdoors. Several members of the panel also said that they disliked papers because they felt all of the information was jammed onto the page. Therefore, the newspaper will have more of a magazine personality based on the ratio of white space to text.
I envision that the newspaper will be image-based, stemming from the strong community feel of Cazenovia. This will be particularly noticeable on the first page of each section. Since people seem to know each other by faces and places just by their picture, seeing people and places they know will draw attention to the paper.
The overall feel of the paper should be very approachable but seriously reported. With the exception of the rural community, demographically Cazenovia seems to be well educated. They like the arts and attend book clubs. Their news should reflect that. Possibly because I have been spending so much time with it for the field notes, but the tone of Time magazine comes to mind. It is very approachable but well written.
Since many of the panel members said they received their national and international news from other daily sources, my newspaper would have different sections than the traditional paper. Some examples include town news, schools, sports, arts and community.