Skagit Valley Herald (Mount Vernon, WA)

Skagit Valley Herald

Contact information:

Heather Hernandez, Publisher, Skagit Publishing

Heather Hernandez, Publisher, Skagit Publishing

Skagit Valley Herald
1215 Anderson Road
Mount Vernon, WA 98274
Phone: 360-424-3251
Fax: 360-424-5300

The Skagit Valley Herald is a daily morning newspaper covering Skagit County, which reaches from the Puget Sound to the Cascade Mountains. It is part of Skagit Publishing LLC, which also publishes the weekly Anacortes American, Your Fidalgo, Courier-Times and The Argus as well as various specialty publications and a full-service commercial printing facility.

History

The Herald celebrates its 130th anniversary in 2014. Our story began on March 4, 1884, when the first issue of The Skagit News weekly paper was published by William C. Ewing. The newspaper’s name was changed to the Mount Vernon Herald in 1913, and it became a daily in 1922. It became the Skagit Valley Herald on Jan. 1, 1956. Scripps League Newspapers Inc., purchased the newspaper in 1964, and Leighton Wood became publisher. Skagit Publishing, established by the Wood family, acquired the paper in 1986. Today, the Skagit Publishing newspapers are part of the Pioneer News Group.

Location

The Skagit Valley is situated in the northwest corner of Washington at the base of the North Cascade Mountains with the waters of Puget Sound forming its western boundary. From summit to sea, the valley is a treasure trove of rivers, streams, bays, hills, woodlands and wildlife. The wild and scenic Skagit River begins in Canada and winds its way into the Skagit Bay. It is one of the most pristine rivers in the country and one of the few to have five different species of salmon, which draw the biggest population of bald eagles each winter to coincide with spawning runs of chum salmon. Huge flocks of trumpeter swans spend winters in the Skagit Delta, drawn south from Russia and Alaska by the mild climate.

The unique ecosystem and the natural beauty have also drawn people who moved west to log, farm and fish. As a result, the valley contains an eclectic collection of towns and communities, each with distinct personalities and charms. The valley has some of the best soil, and therefore, the richest farmland in the United States and is known worldwide for its colorful tulip fields each April. The fields are planted for bulb sales, but the blooms have spawned a popular annual tourist festival. With seven designated wilderness areas, outdoor recreation boosts the economy, as well. There is also manufacturing, including the presence of two oil refineries, boat builders and industries that support nearby Boeing Co., creating a diverse economic base. Skagit County covers 1,731 square miles and has a population of about 118,000.

Awards

The Herald won four first-place awards for reporting and photography in Pioneer’s 2013 Recognizing Excellence contest, judged by journalism professionals from various organizations. Some of those awards were connected to coverage of the collapse of the Skagit River Bridge in May 2013. Another involved a watchdog piece involving a local gun shop’s loss of its firearms license. The coverage ultimately revealed an ATF investigation that had quietly uncovered thousands of missing guns and improper gun sales but resulted in minimal action for a decade.