Changes coming to newspaper

Dear Readers,

Thank you for your continued support of our newspaper as we walk together down a path none of us have ever traveled before. As I said in my column just last week, life changes in the blink of an eye, and right now we are all, together, experiencing unimaginable changes in our day-to-day lives.

For example, like so many, we’ve closed our offices to walk-in traffic and asked our customers to drop payments under the door or contact us by telephone or email as a safety measure for both our employees and those who frequent our business. We appreciate your willingness to accept these temporary changes and we assure you that the moment that can change, it will.

It was a difficult decision to make, and one of many we must implement in the coming days to remain viable in these unusual times.

Like a number of our friends and neighbors who operate or work for small businesses, we have been impacted by the COVID-19 virus with a loss of revenue due to government mandated closures, and just like our local restaurant owners, salons, movie theaters and other small businesses, we are being forced to review how we provide news to you, our valued readers, and make necessary adjustments so that when this passes – AND IT WILL PASS – we will still be able to offer our wonderful community a local newspaper.

To help offset the revenue losses we are experiencing due to COVID-19, beginning next week we will only publish a printed edition on Wednesdays and Saturdays until this pandemic is over; however we will continue to publish in a digital format on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, providing you the same five days of news that you currently expect from us.

I cannot stress enough that this is only a tentative measure. We fully expect to return to publishing a printed newspaper five days a week once this unprecedented situation is behind us.

The new publication schedule will begin Tuesday, March 31, with our first e-edition only paper, followed by the printed product on Wednesday, April 1, and again on Saturday, April 4.

To our subscribers, we are asking that you make sure your digital subscription is activated so once we cease publishing those three printed editions you will have access to the latest news and information without any interruption. If you haven’t activated your access to the digital format, please call Kim Bell in our office between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., at 910-592-8137, and she will gladly help you get that set up.

And, if you are used to picking up a copy of the paper from one of the racks on the days we will be fully digital, we would like to encourage you to try our e-edition. We can get you set up today by calling 910-592-8137 or by going to and searching for Subscribe under the Home category.

While we hate having to take these steps, we believe it is necessary in order for us to navigate these financially choppy waters and come out on the other side ready to print five days a week again.

We remain committed to this community and our readers and intend to bring you the same local news and information that you have come to count on from us over the years That will never change.

Should you have questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to me at [email protected] or by phone at 910-249-4612.

Please continue to support all our local businesses, getting takeout from our restaurants, tipping wait staff and subscribing to and supporting this newspaper which has been a part of our community for more than 90 years.

It is more important than ever that we take care of our own. And we know Sampsonians — when the going is tough, we stand up and stand with those who have remained loyal to us through the years. It is what makes this community so special and it is what will help us get through these most unusual times.

Please pray for our community, our healthcare workers, our businesses, our citizens, our nation, our world and us, at The Sampson Independent. We will get through this and, with God’s help, we will all come back stronger and more viable than ever before.

Sherry Matthews

General Manager