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Suwannee Democrat, Mayo Free Press, and The Jasper News end publications

Three North Florida Newspapers have announced their final publication dates.
COVID-19 takes a toll on local newspapers.
COVID-19 takes a toll on local newspapers.(MGN Online)
Published: Jul. 2, 2020 at 5:16 PM EDT
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SUWANNEE COUNTY, Fla. (WCJB) - Local journalism is another victim to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Three North Florida weekly papers, The Suwannee Democrat, Mayo Free Press, and The Jasper News have announced that this will be their final week of publishing content.

The three newspapers have been around since the 1800s. The Suwannee Democrat was established in 1884, the Mayo Free Press was established in 1888, and The Jasper Times was established in 1870. Each newspaper was published once a week and covered different rural areas.

The Suwannee Democrat covered Suwannee County, the Mayo Free press covered Lafayette County, and the Jasper News served Hamilton County.

The three weeklies will merge with their sister South Georgia newspaper, the Valdosta Daily Times. News, sports, and advertisements will appear in the Valdosta Daily Times’s paper, website, and phone app.

The Valdosta paper publishes on print on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays.

The Suwannee Democrat published its final edition of the paper and its website on July 1. While July 2, was the final day that The Jasper News and The Mayo Free Press will publish.

Regional publisher of the newspapers, Jeff Masters told the Suwannee Democrat that “The Suwannee Democrat, Jasper News, and Mayo Free Press are small businesses that, like other small businesses, have been hit very hard by COVID-19. Their business model relies heavily on revenues generated from local advertising, and that revenue has fallen off precipitously.”

Subscribers to the three soon to be former North Florida newspapers can subscribe to the Valdosta Daily Times or ask for refunds by emailing flsubs@gaflnews.com.

Copyright 2020 WCJB. All rights reserved.

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