When you read this we will be about to enter 2017 and our 145th year of consecutive publishing at Nordstjernan – that’s 145 years of service to readers in several generations.
While most changes throughout our history have been behind the scenes—from longhand writing to a typewriter (after its invention in 1878); from pages worked backward by hand due to the direct printing process to the first typesetters, then a giant step to digital typesetting, working on computers and today’s seamless connection with printers directly from our screens—with this issue change is coming to our actual pages.
We’ve seen growth in readership over the last few years, especially after adding color on a select few pages. To acknowledge and celebrate our growth and our 145th year of service we felt the time was right for an upgrade. This is only the second time in history we’re changing size—the last time was in June 1971 when we went from a broadsheet size to tabloid. This time is almost as drastic since, to accommodate color on all pages and offer you a saddle stitched paper that stays together and makes it easier to go back to earlier issues, we’re going to a size smaller. It’s with better paper and four-color print on every page. You’ll get more pages than before with a slightly different structure—dashboard and relevant events with local features appear in the beginning of every issue, a Swedish news summary has been moved to the back but we’ve done our utmost to stay true to the paper’s soul. We’re also changing frequency, putting more emphasis on spring/early summer and fall/early winter. Two issues in January, February, July and September will be combined which brings us to 18 issues per year. Your next issue after this will be dated February 1.
We’re at the beginning of this change and welcome comments and input from you all—simply comment in social media, if you follow us there, or better yet, send us your thoughts over email to Nordstjernan Editor, or in an envelope to P.O. Box 1710, New Canaan, CT 06840

It bears to be repeated: You [our readers] are the reason we go to work each day, cover events, sit by our computers, crack out words or lick labels, and you are the reason we constantly strive to be the best we can with our resources. I thank you for the opportunity to keep you informed and entertained. I know that everyone who has been part of creating the content for each and every issue this year shares my thanks.
Allow me to take this opportunity to also thank those who one way or another contributed to the content and appearance of Nordstjernan. Amanda, Anders, Bo, Carl, Cecilia, Chipp, Chris, Desiree, Erik, Gunilla, Guy, Göran, James, Jessica, Jim, Kerstin, Leanne, Leif, Lisa, Marianne, Mette, Mitch, Muriel, Nadia, Niclas, Nils, Olle, Pernilla, Roxie, Ted, Ulf and Valorie … everyone! Without you, Nordstjernan would not be what it is and my life would be a lot less fun.

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There are many different kinds of interest groups in Swedish America. Nordstjernan continues to be there for all of us, not just the few. Nordstjernan is a forum for discussion. I have previously called Nordstjernan a living bulletin board for Swedish-America and one thing is certain: With a keen eye on our legacy and history we will continue to increase our coverage of life in Sweden and Swedish-America today.

We pride ourselves on open communication with our readers and we constantly venture into new channels online. This opens up even more lines of contact with you and has made us all feel an additional amount of gratitude and connection with each and every one of you. We try to read every comment in every channel, so please keep them coming!

As most of you know, the way I see it, working with Nordstjernan is both a privilege and an obligation—and that privilege, that honor, has grown more fun every day. And, working with and for Nordstjernan has never felt better. Never better!
Not too long ago, someone—I think it must have been one of our religious leaders—said: “Do as much good as you can, for as many people as you can, as often as you can, wherever you can, for any reason you can, for as many days as you have.”
Begin today. Begin with just a smile.

Continued Happy Holidays! Christmas is mostly over when you read this - let’s make 2017 a good, safe and happy year together.
All the best for 2017!

Ulf Barslund Mårtensson
Editor & Publisher