Mon 4 May 2015
About 150 people showed up Sunday at Tomales Bay Resort and Marina for a Community Farewell to former West Marin Citizen publisher Linda Petersen of Inverness. Petersen on Saturday sold her paper to Point Reyes Light editor Tess Elliott and her partner David Briggs.
The Citizen will now cease publication, and The Light should be more financially sustainable as the only newspaper for a readership area of about 10,000 people.
As one speaker at the party noted, the creation of The Citizen in 2007 grew out of community resentment toward sensationalism in The Light while it was published by Robert Plotkin of Bolinas from 2005 to 2010. The advent of a competitor created financial problems for The Light, Plotkin acknowledged in 2010, but The Citizen itself wasn’t highly profitable.
With Tomales Bay and the resort’s marina in the background, the artist Vickisa of Bolinas makes mental notes as corn cobs are barbecued on the deck of the resort.
The Citizen’s former obituary writer Larken Bradley (left) and her husband Mark chat with Linda Petersen, who will soon move to Portland to be near her son and daughter and their families.
Unable to attend the event was my partner Lynn Axelrod, who started The Citizen’s calendar section and who for three years was the paper’s only regular reporter. As a reporter, she often did the work of a news editor — finding many of the news stories she covered. In this role, she received compliments and thanks from readers.
Former oyster-grower Kevin Lunny (left), whose family plans to open an oyster bistro at the resort, chats with Ulla McLean of Point Reyes Station (center) and Joyce Goldfield of Inverness Park.
Joel Hack of Bodega Bay founded The West Marin Citizen in June 2007 under the name West Marin Pilot. When the paper began publishing weekly the following month, the name was changed to West Marin Citizen. Here Hack enjoys slurping down an oyster on the half shell.
As Petersen prepares to move from Inverness to Portland, Bernie Stephan, the master of ceremonies, takes note of the many places she’s lived, including Denmark, Sweden, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico.
Kris Brown, who is active in progressive politics locally, tells of how much she enjoyed working with Petersen.
Stinson Beach gallery owner Claudia Chapline, who has been writing art reviews for The Citizen, has let it be known she will now write them for The Light.
Joel Hack, who founded The Citizen eight years ago, previously published The Bodega Bay Navigator. He turned The Citizen over to Petersen, who was then his ad manager, three and a half years ago.
The Haggards with Colin Schlitt, Van Van der Maaten, Danny Vitali (standing left to right) weren’t the only local performers well received by the audience. Performing later in the evening was the band El Radio Fantastique, who got everyone dancing — including small children and band member Loyal Tarbot’s 92-year-old grandmother.
As is common at community events hereabouts, Art Rogers of Point Reyes Station had the guests pose for group photo. Standing left of Petersen, who has just received a bouquet, is Tess Elliott, editor of The Light, and her partner David Briggs. Seated at far right is Mary Olsen who with Teri Mattson hosted the farewell party.