OUR 35TH ANNIVERSARY 1985-2020 – The Mainstreeter’s very first editorial – October 1985, Volume 1, Issue 1

Martin Adelaar

With the publication of our October 2020 issue of The Mainstreeter only months from now, we will proudly celebrate the 35th anniversary of our community newspaper. To help us recognize the stellar work of the legions of volunteers who have made The Mainstreeter such a success over our 35-year history, we will sprinkle throughout our 2020 issues some of the stories that were making news in Old Ottawa East back in October 1985.

We begin by reprinting the very first editorial in our history, penned by then-editor Martin Adelaar. Much has changed since this initial viewpoint was written, but one thing remains the same – the participation of tremendous volunteers who make our paper a vital source of news, information and entertainment for this community. We hope you enjoy this editorial and the other throwback articles we will publish this year. Our goal is that The Mainstreeter will continue to be, in the words of Martin Adelaar, “…an effective community voice that makes you feel good”.

Answering the question takes me back to the September opening of the Main Street Community Centre at De Mazenod School. I saw children running around that day wearing buttons saying, “I’m a Mainstreeter.” Not only that, I heard them shout it out and I’m sure it made them feel good.

The Mainstreeter hopes to be an effective community voice that makes you feel good. We hope it will make the community feel good about its people, the scenery and the potential for new and exciting things to happen here. The Mainstreeter is published by the Ottawa East Community Activities Group (CAG), a volunteer group that has been active in social and recreational activities in the community for almost ten years. Given this relationship, The Mainstreeter’s editorial policy will, to some extent, reflect and share CAG’s direction and goals. In its capacity as the community management group at the Main Street Community Centre, CAG has a vision that sees the Centre and the newspaper as stimulants to help meet our community’s development needs. These needs include daycare, education, recreation and economic development. What our community’s needs are exactly, how they should be met and who should be involved are all topics of discussion that we hope to share with you. This shopping list is, however, incomplete. It’s up to you to tell us what else needs to be discussed. We’ll strive to do this in an unbiased, objective and open way.

If you think we’re going to be totally serious, forget it. The Mainstreeter is going to have fun as well. In upcoming issues, we intend to have regular features on music, games, cooking and anything else you can think of.

A major feature of our first issue in the upcoming municipal election, both at the community and city levels. For the past several weeks many of you have been thinking about or have openly voiced issues that you feel need to be addressed. Our recent housing developments detrimental or beneficial to the community? What can be done to stimulate job creation on a local basis? The Mainstreeter had a chat with the candidates for alderman to see how they would meet these challenges. I think you’ll find the results interesting.

The Mainstreeter is produced by an all-volunteer staff and my thanks go to them for helping to get this started. We think there’s lots of room for the newspaper to grow and we look forward to your innovation and participation to make it happen.”

[Editor’s note: The Mainstreeter is no longer published by the Old Ottawa East Community Activity Group (CAG) – it is now an independent community newspaper published by Mainstreeter Newspaper Inc.]

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