So many things going on this week. First off, while St. Patrick's Day isn't until next week, the usual round of events kicking off the celebration happens very soon. They include the Greening of the Fountain, the City's free Tara Feis celebration, and Tybee's own St. Patrick's parade.
We will feature full St. Patrick's coverage in the next issue, but clearly the event and its associated festivities are spanning two full weekends.
As you can tell from virtually our entire music section - Savannah Stopover is finally here.
This four-day event beginning March 9 features 50 bands in transit to gigs at Austin's South By Southwest music festival. As leading media sponsors, last week we featured an extensive insert and special section.
This week, Bill DeYoung offers a ton of coverage, including a re-run of the full schedule as well as a "survival guide" of FAQs for how best to optimize your partying and listening experience this week.
This is the first-time ever for the Savannah Stopover, but it doesn't have to be the last. The key is full participation, and we hope all of you - even at the last minute - will do all you can to enjoy and support this dynamic new event.
But let's not overlook what is actually the most newsworthy thing in our paper this week: Patrick Rodgers' extensive, exclusive interview with Rochelle Small-Toney, who barring some incredibly bizarre last-minute twist of fate (not something you want to completely count out given the strangeness of the proceedings so far) will almost certainly be voted in as new city manager at the next city council meeting.
I promise you that you will not find a first-hand account from Ms. Small-Toney anything like this in any other media outlet. If you know anyone who still insists on getting their local news from some of the more "mainstream" outlets in town - and who then complains that they're not getting the news they want - do them a favor and spread the word that Connect Savannah is doing what nobody else in town is doing.
In this remarkable, long-form interview, Small-Toney touches on some of the policy issues she faces now that the protracted, painful city manager search process is over, or at least entering a new chapter:
• The issue of "brain drain" as so many experience city personnel take early retirement;
• Her hiring plans to complete staffing her department, which has been seriously short-staffed for months;
• Lingering rumors/opinions that the City faces a serious pension fund deficit (which Small-Toney denies);
• Plans for the Civic Center/a new arena/the Cultural Arts Center;
• And how she plans to address issues surrounding the "two Savannahs" and poverty reduction.
Whether or not her answers satisfy your curiosity is up to you. But don't let anyone tell you that no one is taking you directly to the source herself!
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"And you deserve better."
Thanks, Jim, for my new campaign slogan.