Daily Star (Hammond)

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The Daily & Sunday Star is a newspaper published in Hammond, Louisiana, by the Daily Star Publishing Company, located at 725 South Morrison Boulevard, ZIP 70403-5401. As of 2013 the publisher is Keenan Gingles, the executive editor is Lil Mirando, and the news editor is Lovell Beaulieu. The newspaper belongs to the Associated Press, the Louisiana Press Association,[1] and the Hammond Chamber of Commerce.[2] The newspaper focuses on happenings in Tangipahoa Parish, where Hammond is located, and in Livingston Parish and Saint Helena Parish—the three civil parishes (counties in other states) of its home-delivery circulation area.

History[edit]

The Daily Star began on 1959 November 12 as the Hammond Press, which on December 23 of the same year retitled itself the Hammond Item. As of 2011 the Daily & Sunday Star is the sole daily newspaper published in Hammond.[3] The newspaper publishes on Sunday as the Sunday Star and on five weekdays (Tuesday through Saturday as of 2011) as the Daily Star. In 2007 the Daily Star changed from being an afternoon newspaper to publishing in the morning, thus within its three-parish circulation area going into head-to-head competition with the Advocate (Baton Rouge) and the Times-Picayune (New Orleans). The Daily Star has held up by nuancing to this competitive environment in Louisiana's fastest-growing region and as of 2013 has paid circulation above 12 thousand, free (shopping) circulation of 35 thousand, and prodigious advertising, especially in the Thursday and Sunday editions. The Sunday Star circulates USA Weekend and a full range of comics.[4]

Over the years the Daily Star has been owned by various media corporations. As of 2013 it was owned by Paxton Media Group headquartered in Kentucky.

Role in Hurricane Katrina news[edit]

In 2005 during Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath the Star (as it is often called locally) continued operation via emergency measures and skipped paper publication on just one day—August 30, Tuesday, the sole date since 1959 that the Star had not published as scheduled. In the meantime, even on that Tuesday as during the preceding weekend, the Star staff was at work and, with the public power outage, used generators and laptop computers to maintain the newspaper's web site; issues for August 31 and September 1 and 2 were printed in Denham Springs.[5] During and after the storm the Star facilities in Hammond served as the temporary operations center for the Associated Press New Orleans bureau and as the temporary reporting-base for several newspapers from around the country in covering the New Orleans situation. With just one day of interrupted publication on paper, the Star published accounts of the hurricane and its aftermath, including controversies related to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).[6]

Opinion page[edit]

The Daily Star carries various national, state, and local columns.[7] The Star editorial policy is politically nonaligned, but occasionally the newspaper has endorsed candidates since 1986. A major feature of the Daily Star is its letters to the editor, which are often vigorous about local Louisiana issues and provide grassroots commentary obtainable nowhere else.[8]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ An organization in which the Daily Star has won numerous Louisiana Press Association awards.
  2. ^ Hammond Chamber of Commerce home page.
  3. ^ The Daily Star was not the first daily newspaper in Hammond but had several predecessors. One of them was the Hammond Daily Courier, founded in 1932 by Hodding Carter. Shortly after its founding the current newspaper became the Hammond Daily Item and in 1960 the Star-Item. In 1961 the newspaper switched to the title Daily Star and has held that name ever since.
  4. ^ Daily Star home page. For a statistical analysis of the Daily Star with relation to its primary circulation area and sales reach, see Knight Foundation study of Daily Star diversity. See also MacRae's Business Directory on the Daily Star.
  5. ^ On the press of the Livingston Parish News.
  6. ^ Peter Whoriskey, "We called it Hurricane FEMA" in Washington Post, 2007 March 12, p. A01 (accessed 2009 April 24).
  7. ^ Such as Roman Heleniak's Just Off the Turnip Truck. See Daily Star local columnists.
  8. ^ Letters to the editor of the Daily Star. See also Orbis Quintus.