Jamie Gardner

As we approach the start of 2023, I’d like to take a few moments to offer my appreciation for your support in 2022.

Thank you to our readers. Your continued support is validation that we continue to produce a quality product for our communities. In 2023 we will strive to improve our newspapers, magazines and online/social sites by adding features that will improve readership and interest.

To our advertisers - simply put - our publications would not exist without your support. I’ve heard people say over the past few years that newspapers are dead. That is not true, we are alive and kicking, and we have proof that newspaper advertising produces results. Last week I went into a business that advertised with our Baxley newspaper during the Christmas season to offer my support back to that business. The owner of the business told me that he should’ve advertised more in the newspaper as he had sold more product this year, due to his newspaper advertisements, compared to prior years. That, of course, was music to my ears and I thanked him for letting me know that good news.

I witnessed a local business in 2022 completely pull its newspaper advertising, using the excuse that social media is free (which is not true as you must pay employees/or a company to generate posts). That company is now bankrupt and has shuttered its doors. A national drug company also made this decision in 2022 and I believe it is only a matter of time before that company will disappear as well.

The unfortunate news as we start 2023 is that our company will have to make some hard decisions about inflation. We have been hit hard with inflation over the past two years. As an example, newsprint (paper) has increased from $12,000.00 a truckload just two years ago, to now over $20,000.00. We have cut corners as much as possible to keep costs down, but there is little room left we can cut. Unfortunately, we are left with little choice and our subscription prices will see an increase for the first time in over 10 years. Hopefully, 2023 will be a better year regarding inflation.

On behalf of the staff of The Baxley News-Banner, the Charlton County Herald, Mature Living magazines, and Gardner Printing Services, we wish the very best in 2023. Let’s all pray it will be the best year yet. God bless you, and again, from the bottom of my heart…Thank You!

- Jamie Gardner