It’s taken 11 months to get to this point, but we made it to the end of our first calendar year at Triad City Beat. It would be difficult, using mere words, to describe the feeling around here.

Deeply satisfying exhilaration. Profound engagement. Happy insanity. Nope, words can’t touch it.

We’ve been pushing hard against the learning curve, creating processes and relationships, forging into new territory and putting in more hours than we thought possible. And still, every Wednesday morning, we get up with the sun to deliver the papers.

It may be the most fun we’ve ever had.

And though our core editorial team has almost 40 years of collective experience in journalism, none of us have ever done anything quite like this before.

The goal for TCB has always been about more than breaking stories and taking people’s money for advertising. From the beginning we wanted to give people a deeper understanding of the time and place in which they live, to act as connective tissue between these cities that sometimes seem so far apart, to contribute, in some small way, to what we see as the Triad’s most dynamic era in generations.

We made it to this point through commitment to our mission, late nights and lunches in moving cars, with effort and organization and collaboration and a drive that perhaps we didn’t even know we possessed.

But we never could have gotten off the ground if it weren’t for our readers, who gave life to the stories on the page and the screen. Likewise we wouldn’t have survived until the spring thaw without our advertisers, many of which have been with us since our first issue, signing on to underwrite a product that didn’t yet exist. None of this — the newspaper, the website, the stories, the talent, all of which we offer for free — would be possible without the support of Triad businesses small and large. When it comes time to spend some money, we ask all our readers to support the people who support us.

And moving into 2015, our second calendar year, we pledge to keep up our end of the deal: smart, enlightening writing, without fear or favor, about the things that make our cities what they are — and what they aspire to be.

Until then, thank you one and all. It has been, and will continue to be, an honor and a pleasure.

Join the First Amendment Society, a membership that goes directly to funding TCB‘s newsroom.

We believe that reporting can save the world.

The TCB First Amendment Society recognizes the vital role of a free, unfettered press with a bundling of local experiences designed to build community, and unique engagements with our newsroom that will help you understand, and shape, local journalism’s critical role in uplifting the people in our cities.

All revenue goes directly into the newsroom as reporters’ salaries and freelance commissions.

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