Sunday, November 28, 2010

New Place for all the Eldersburg News You Need to Know

Hi Everyone,

You may have noticed in my last newsletter that I am now writing a weekly article for the Eldersburg Patch, a brand new online Eldersburg Newspaper. It's a great site where you can read all about things happening in Eldersburg or contribute events, reviews and more. If you want to read this article online at the Patch, Click Here.

13 Things You Need to Know About Eldersburg Patch Think of our site as the community water cooler — a place where you can stop by and talk about everything going on in town.

By Valerie Bonk

It's been a little more than a week since Eldersburg Patch has launched. We're gathering a lot of followers and are getting to know the community inside and out.

We wanted to take the time to remind you why we're here and what this site is all about. Simply put, it's about you.

We've built Patch so that you have plenty of opportunities to comment on stories, share your opinions, post photos and announcements and add events to the community calendar. We hope that our site will strengthen the community, but we can't do it without you. So get to it! 

1. Comment on an Article
We subscribe to the idea that "news is a conversation." Much of our reporting will emanate from what readers tell us in emails, comments on our sites and in conversations around town. Share your thoughts and reactions to our articles by posting a comment directly below each story. 

2. Ask a Question
So maybe you want to know when that pothole is going to get fixed, or maybe you're a local expert on native trees just dying for someone to ask why their allergies are so bad this year. Patch's Q&A section is the place for you to ask your questions and show off your expertise, all while connecting with your neighbors. Visit the tab here and ask a question, or answer someone else's.

3. Post an Event
Do you know of a book signing at our local bookstore, a celebrity chef appearing at cooking store or an art exhibit at a local coffee shop? Is there a garage sale or graduation ceremony coming up? If it's not on our Patch calendar, it should be. Feel free to add events to our site here.

4. Send a News Tip
At the bottom of the homepage, there's a link that says, "Send Us News Tips." Tell us about stories we should cover. Your tip will be sent straight to Valerie Bonk, Eldersburg Patch's (incredibly grateful) editor.

5. Post an Announcement
Post births, engagements and wedding announcements. Tell us who made the honor roll or share school awards, social notes and thank you shout outs. If you're looking for volunteers or searching for your lost dog, we welcome you to call on your community for help. Just remember, our Terms of Service say announcements should be for personal use and not for advertising.

6. Sign Up for Newsletters
The daily Eldersburg Patch newsletter brings you all articles and announcements that have been posted in the last 24 hours. It is delivered to your email every day at 6 a.m. You can also sign up for the weekly newsletter, which shows a subset of the content created and featured on our site over the last few days. It is delivered every Thursday at 10 a.m.

7. Claim Your Directory Listing
Our business and organization listings aren't skimpy. Our team of researchers actually hit the streets and visited businesses, schools, parks, libraries and more so we can provide photos as well as detailed information such as products sold and hours of operation. To contact us about the listing for your business or organization, email us at If you own or manage a business or organization in our directory, claim it here.

8. Shout It Out!
You now have a way to shout out on the site without having to add a comment to an existing article. You can tell us what you have to say right now by using the new shout box at the top of the Activity Stream. Whatever you "shout" will go directly into the stream, right on the homepage.

9. Upload Your Photos and Video
Upload videos of the high football touchdown or your Eldersburg Little Leaguer's first home run. Post photos from local festivals, or send in a snapshot of your best holiday recipes. We invite you to share the memories that you've caught on camera with the rest of the community.

10. Advertise With Us
For all advertising queries, please email our Eldersburg Patch Ad Manager, Paul Zetlmeisl at

11. Review Restaurants
Do you want to be the first to tell your friends whether the new restaurant in town gets two thumbs-up? You can post a review of your favorite (or least favorite) restaurants here. Or, search to find what you're craving -- you can filter results by cuisine, price or seating accommodations.

12. Social Media Engagement
Like us on Facebook at and follow us on Twitter at Immerse yourself in our content and actively contribute and engage via social media. Let's start a conversation together.

13. Send a Letter to the Editor
Patch would like to extend an invitation to every member of the Eldersburg community to submit a letter to the editor. Express your thoughts or concerns about anything that might be stirring up conversation around town, and we'll post it. Just email Editor Valerie Bonk at

The more Eldersburg Patch serves as on online space for community dialogue, the more useful our site will be. So next time you have something to share with your neighbors, consider taking a moment to send a letter to Patch. Chances are, you're not the only who feels that way.

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