February 15, 2007

Today's Front Pages Analysis

Blanket coverage warms snow-weary communities

“Groundhog was a liar.”

The Times Union of Albany, N.Y., said it, but the sentiment was the same in newspapers from Indiana to Maine, where cities have been pounded by snow, sleet and high winds. “Snow weary,” lamented the Erie(Pa.) Times-News.

But everyone wasn’t unhappy about the winter wallop. A yoga teacher has been “praising” the snow gods and “Bam! Everything’s been coming up white stuff since,” the New Hampshire Union Leader in Manchester said. The newspaper printed a photo of the snow-worshiper donning a bikini and making “an offering to the Norse snow god Ullr.”  

The timing of the storm’s arrival in the Northeast touched headline writers. “Nor’easter Valentine: A Big Snowy Kiss,” The Post-Standard of Syracuse, N.Y., said in red. “Cupid’s Curse,” said the Sun Journal in Lewiston, Maine. The Times Herald-Record in Middletown, N.Y., said: “Valentine’s Day Messacre” in an all-photo front page.

President Bush’s comments about Iraq during a Wednesday press conference were played on many front pages. “Bush links deaths of Americans to Iran,” The Kansas City (Mo.) Star reported.  Said the Los Angeles Times, “Bush calls it irrelevant that no solid evidence links top officials to alleged weapons aid.”

The loss of 13,000 jobs at Chrysler was secondary in the Detroit Free Press. Its front-page column said DaimlerChrysler “scared the $%#& out of its remaining” employees with hints that Daimler could spin off Chrysler. The newspaper looked at “Why it could be sold” and “Why it might not be.” In Delaware, The News Journal of Wilmington reported on the economic impact of a local plant’s closing.

In Florida, a Discovery Health TV show has created a new Orlando tourist attraction: the morgue, where fans are coming to see a chief medical examiner, the Orlando Sentinel reported. And in St. Petersburg, a 15-year-old has been hiccupping for three weeks. “Just (hic) make (hic) them (hic) stop,” the St. Petersburg Times said.

Kate Kennedy, a former newspaper Page One editor, is director/partnerships and initiatives.

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