Ultimately, the newspaper must get to each of our readers, or all is for naught. The circulation department’s job is to sell and deliver as many home-delivered and single copy newspapers as possible each day.
Because they are at the very end of the production chain, this crew is dependent upon all of the other departments if they are to meet their delivery deadlines of 6 p.m. daily and 7 a.m. on Sunday.
About 140 carriers work to deliver The News-Review to readers six days a week. Of those, about 80 are junior carriers who deliver by bike, foot or sometimes car (with the help of a parent). In addition, we have approximately 60 adults who deliver the newspaper either in small neighborhoods or out in the rural parts of the county, at times driving more than 150 miles a day, just to deliver a newspaper to their customers. We also have five drivers who are charged with delivering the papers to vending machines and stores throughout the county.
Together, all the carriers deliver approximately 18,000 papers a day to virtually all parts of Douglas County. In all, they cover about 2,000 miles a day delivering to the county’s back roads stuffing the newspapers into those bright red News-Review tubes.
Delivery becomes a way of life for many of the carriers. Some start out as junior carriers and become motor carriers when they are able to drive. Others begin as motor carriers and stay for years, sometimes decades. Inserting equipment makes life a bit easier for carriers compared to years past when carriers had to insert all the days’ advertisements into the newspaper themselves.
As soon as the press begins shortly after noon each weekday, papers are funneled through the distribution department’s inserting machines, bundled, labeled and sent out the back door on a conveyor belt.
Route drivers and single copy drivers grab bundles and head out to deliver the papers to readers as soon as possible. Back at the office, another crew fields calls from readers, signs up new subscribers and handles various customer requests such as temporary vacation stops and making payments.