On April 12, 2014 ElmiraTelegram.com was launched.
The concept for the site already existed at NewsFromTown.com, a forum which was launched to replace Broader View Weekly, a small newspaper based out of Spencer NY I wrote for. NewsFromTown offered news from smaller, often overlooked, towns and villages in the area. ElmiraTelegram also picked up where another website, iElmira.com, left off after being shut down in March that same year.
The idea for ElmiraTelegram was simple; to offer a dependable source of local news as well as an outlet for intelligent, civil discussion about issues facing the greater Elmira/ Horseheads area.
Within six months, juggling two websites serving the same purpose was getting to be too much, and so NewsFromTown and ElmiraTelegram were combined.
Things rapidly took off from there, and today the site sees an average of 15,000-20,000 visitors a month.
When referring to the site, I have always used the term “we”. It wouldn’t be possible without the people who have supported the site from Day One. From the regulars on the forums to the people who so graciously lend their time and talent to contribute to the Community Voices section, the site is a source of information for the community, by the community and it wouldn’t be possible without all of you.
Local news coverage has changed over the years, and ElmiraTelegram is no stranger to change. However the emphasis has continued to be all things local. You’ll find no click bait articles used as filler here.
In November 2018 the site got a facelift to give it a more professional look and offer the type of news coverage I think is lacking. The forums, while perhaps outdated in a social media world, remain as a place for neighbors to chat about a variety of topics. Additionally, the site has added emphasis on community events, supporting the local music scene and more. Most recently, we’ve added “Eat Elmira” a source of information for those looking to dine at locally owned and operated establishments.
The site has grown over the past five years, far more than I could have imagined when it first launched. There’s more I’d like to do, and I believe we’ll get there as circumstances allow. I’d like to see the “Community Voices” section expanded with more writers. I’m also hopeful the “Opinion” section, specifically the “Letters To The Editor”, section will grow. And we’ll try to bring you more good news about what people are doing throughout the community as well.
Websites come and go, but so long as we’re serving a need in the community, I’ll do my best to make sure ElmiraTelegram remains. Truth is, I think the best days of ElmiraTelegram are still to come.
Thank you all for helping to make it happen.