Time flies when you’re having fun!
Our goal at What’s Up Yukon has always been to be a true reflection of Yukon’s living culture. Before we started this little magazine, our family knew there was way more happening here than we could keep track of.
It almost seemed as though the Yukon kept its entertainment, cultural and recreational activities a secret. Quite often we would find out what was happening after an event had taken place, and we would miss so much.
Plenty of conversation on our back deck occurred as we dreamed about starting an entertainment magazine.
That first year after we took the plunge was scary, exciting, fun, challenging, and rewarding all at the same time.
After just six issues we noticed that Yukoners were starting to take ownership of our pages, and the magazine began to breathe with a life all its own.
We started with just 12 writers back then. Today, among the three papers we publish, we publish articles by as many as 120 writers.
James Cackette, Nicole Bauberger, George Maratos and Vanessa Willett were among those original 12 writers and are still with us today.
Given the depth of talent in the Yukon, it’s no surprise that we have always been able to find people with a passion for their subjects and an intimate commitment to their community. Together we have helped to reflect – maybe even define – what it is to enjoy being a Yukoner.
Darrell Hookey was in the editor’s chair from the first day of this magazine until very recently. He helped shape the first five and a half years.
By the time he moved on, he had put out 200 issues of What’s Up Yukon (actually 201, considering that our April Fool’s edition in 2008 was Number 91-1/2). He had also edited 20 issues of How’s Business Yukon and four issues of How Ya Feeling Yukon.
Darrell’s contributions of yesterday helped create who we are today. We wish him and his new wife, Daisy, all the best as they take up their new home in Ontario.
As we looked forward to what the future would bring with a new editor, we saw so many opportunities. The vision of our magazine is clear, but how it is interpreted and presented by the editor can vary. It was really important to find the right fit.
Our favourite question to screen applicants for interviews was, “What is the secret to What’s Up Yukon’s success?” We got some incredible and inspiring answers to that question.
It was rewarding to see reflected back to us from so many people how we were perceived, and that there was understanding about our vision.
Our next challenge was to find someone who could relate to the depth and breadth of our readership. Young and old. Arts and sports. Classical and heavy metal. Whitehorse and the rural communities.
It occurred to us that this was asking a lot. How can you choose one person to be everything? So, what if we had two people sharing the position?
We’ve never felt constrained by “how things have been done before,” so we looked beyond the norm. When we narrowed our interviews, we asked each applicant to think about it and provide some insight into how they saw the two positions working together.
We could go on here to describe Meg and Ken and why we think they are going to work so well together, but maybe it’s better for you to “listen in” to their conversation on page 5 about what they see in our future.
Suffice to say these last few weeks have been refreshing as we’ve been getting to know each other. The excitement and vision to expand on what we have been doing thus far has given us a renewed sense of adventure.
We are looking to broaden the diversity in our content, to develop more community connections and reflect Yukon life from more perspectives. Together, we are developing a plan to get there.
These are exciting times at What’s Up Yukon, and we are certainly enjoying the ride.
Whether you are a long-time reader or this is the first issue you’ve seen, we hope you’ll stick around and enjoy it with us.