When we moved to the area over 25 years ago, Easter marked the beginning of the end of tourist season. I-95 was still four- to six-lanes wide and occasionally a group of young locals would stand on the overpasses and wave goodbye to the cars in the northbound lanes: no more waiting in line at restaurants and movies; less traffic along A1A; fewer people at the beach.
Things have changed.
Even though locals still enjoy the quiet, lazy days of summer, most of us have jobs (at least the lucky ones) and feel the pinch when snowbirds head north. Especially those of us with small, family-owned businesses who know only too intimately the ebb and flow of a service-based economy during a national recession.
Luckily for The Coastal Star, our piece of paradise is unique enough to weather seasonal trends.
Our sister publication, the Palm Beach ArtsPaper, however, is not as immune to the vagaries of a recession that has dramatically impacted the local arts community. As a result, Greg Stepanich and his excellent group of arts writers will focus their attention on their Web site (www.palmbeachartspaper.com) during the summer months and return to print in October with a revamped season preview.
Since covering the arts is an important part of our mission — and is essential to our South Florida quality of life — we’ve asked Greg to contribute a column over the summer giving Coastal Star readers a quick look at summer arts news and happenings. We’ll also build a few more arts events into our Community Calendar listings.
If you are a snowbird heading north, please be sure to fill out the subscription form on Page 28 in this edition and drop it (plus your check for $18) by our office at 5011 N. Ocean Blvd. in Ocean Ridge. If you don’t have time to stop in before you leave, feel free to mail the form and your payment and we’ll be sure to send you a copy each month that you’re away.
Of course our paper is also available at: www.thecoastalstar.com and we give you several ways to read the paper online: 1) flip through the electronic version on the homepage, 2) download the high resolution version and read pages on your screen, download to your mobile device or print out the pages you are interested in, or 3) click on the NEWS link and read and respond to individual stories as they are posted.
If you’re heading North, we wish you safe travels. See you in the fall.
If you’re staying for the summer, stop by and say hello. We’ll be here.
— Mary Kate Leming, editor