Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Babies 'r us, every Tuesday afternoon

As I was returning from lunch a few minutes ago, at least three moms were leaving the Bradenton Herald with little ones in tow. I didn't need to look at my Cardinals watch to know what time it was:

The 1-year-old birthday babies are getting their portraits taken in our photo lab.

Every week, from 1 to 2 on Tuesday afternoons, parents, grandparents, brothers and sisters line up with their favorite just-turned 1-year-olds for their place in Neighbors history. And it's a time-honored tradition, begun long before I arrived in 1998. Every Friday, we publish their extremely cute photos in our Neighbors section. We've seen many a scrapbook with that clipping proudly entered over the years.

Even so, it still catches me offguard when the occasional camera-shy baby makes it known on a Tuesday afternoon that he considers this punishment. A baby's sobs are pretty much a show-stopper in the newsroom, where honestly the buzz is usually a lot less dramatic.

But it also helps us remember that we truly are our community's newspaper. And, we hope, just maybe it'll help hook some of those 1-year-olds on the newspaper in the years to come.

-- Joan

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