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Columbia Missourian

BEHIND THE SCENES: The Missourian's community beat

By Jennessa Ewing
December 10, 2012 | 5:08 p.m. CST

COLUMBIA — One of the jobs of a community newspaper is to introduce readers to people and topics that might otherwise get overlooked. The Missourian's community beat is a team of reporters with that purpose in mind.

In this video, Managing Editor Jeanne Abbott and a few of her community reporters describe the kinds of stories they hope to reflect back to Missourian readers. Watch the video, then scroll down for links to some of the team's stories and for information about how to suggest future topics.

Reporter Marian McPherson describes the community beat this way: "The beat creates more of a sense of a community, a family. Sometimes you can live with people in your neighborhood and you just don’t know who they are, and you don’t feel connected. But it helps people feel more connected.”

Abbott says: “I think there’s just a real high interest in reading about other people. I think that just crosses all demographics. And I think the more interesting people we find, the more people realize just what diverse, complex interesting town they live in."

A few of the community beat's stories: 

Who do you wish the Missourian would do a story about? What trends do you see that deserve coverage? Share these ideas with Jeanne Abbott by email at or 573-882-5741.

The video is a project from Jennessa Ewing of the Missourian's community outreach team. Supervising editor is Joy Mayer.