The Juneau Empire will bring back its Sports section to six days a week starting Sept. 7, Managing Editor Charles Westmoreland announced this week. The paper also will bring back its weekly Outdoors section.
The Sports section was reduced to three days a week in late 2008, at which time the Outdoors section was eliminated.
"Returning sports to six days a week is something I've been looking forward to for a while now," Westmoreland said. "Growth is good, and it's something you don't see very often these days among newspapers."
The Sports section currently prints Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. Along with adding a daily sports presence, the expansion will also add more pages within the section. Readers can count on box scores and highlights for all national sporting events every day.
"Our sports editor, Shaun Cox, has been begging for more pages since he joined us in July. He's getting exactly that," Westmoreland said. "Local sports coverage will always be our bread-and-butter, but we will begin including more national sports coverage so everyone, regardless of where they came from, can keep tabs on their home teams."
The expansion of the Sports section was timed to coincide with the start of local high school sports and the NFL and college football seasons.
The Empire's Outdoors section will launch Friday, Sept. 11.
Abby Lowell, who oversees Empire special sections, will take the lead as Outdoors editor. Lowell has worked as a fly fishing guide in Central Oregon and as a naturalist, trail and wildlife guide in Southeast Alaska. She also served as an assistant alpine ski coach for the Juneau Ski Club.
"Juneau is an outdoor playground many could only dream of having as their back yard," Lowell said. "Whether it's fishing, hiking, climbing or sailing, Southeast Alaska caters to a variety of activities. This updated and refreshed section will touch on local clubs, events and highlight individuals in our community doing extraordinary things."
The section will focus on outdoors recreation, to include hunting and fishing. The Empire is currently looking for hunting and fishing columnists. Those interested can e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. The section also will include an outdoor calendar of events, Lowell said, and she encourages readers to submit their own photos.
Westmoreland said other additions are planned, including the launch of weekly education pages focusing on local schools.
"We have a lot of fun, interesting content in the works," he said. "Juneau readers will be pleased with what we have in store."