Morning briefing: SuffolkTimes.com to bolster its staff

The end of this week marks the end of a 10-year era at Times/Review Newsgroup, as we bid farewell to The North Shore Sun, which has been publishing online-only since last December at Northshoresun.com. I had the great pleasure of serving as editor at the Sun, which first published in September 2002, for about six months last year, while I was also editing the News-Review.

During that time I got to oversee an amazingly talented staff that went on to win some big awards from that year, and I met a lot of great people who live out in what has now come to be known as SunLand (Wading River, Shoreham, Middle Island, Ridge, Sound Beach, Rocky Point, Miller Place, Mount Sinai and Coram). I know the folks there are saddened at the loss of the Sun, which had become for many a part of their everyday lives.

As a journalist and Brookhaven resident, I can only hope that a product with similarly high standards of writing and reporting will step in to fill the void.

• The good news is that none of our staff members are being laid off. All of those resources, including editor Grant Parpan, who is also the company’s web editor, two-time New York Press Association Sports Writer of the Year Joe Werkmeister, Long Island Press Club Cub Reporter of the Year for 2010 Jen Gustavson and our newest staff member, reporter Samantha Brix, who joined the company over a year ago, will now be working full-time for the News-Review, The Suffolk Times and a bolstered Wine Press website and magazine.

Meanwhile, Samantha Brix will continue her coverage of the Shoreham-Wading River School District and other issues affecting those two hamlets.

• Speaking of filling the void, Times/Review Newsgroup was forced to fill the void left at newsstands Thursday and Friday after what was described as two, or possibly three, people traveled the North Fork and even Shelter Island buying up all the News-Review and The Suffolk Times papers they could find.

The company had another 5,500 copies printed Friday afternoon that were delivered later that day and Saturday.

We can’t say for sure who was responsible for the run on papers, but as our publisher said Saturday, we do have our suspicions. This is a story that has seemed to captivate even the most casual of our  readers. Stay tuned for additional coverage, in which we hope to explain what happened, and maybe why.

• How about that Porters football team? What a win! The team scored six touchdowns in an absolute rout of Stony Brook Friday night. Here’s our story in case you missed it.

• Nothing was stopping these folks from enjoying their wedding this weekend.

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