One of the gems of the journalism world is The Boston Courant. This is a weekly newspaper focusing on several Boston neighborhoods -- the Back Bay, Beacon Hill, Downtown, Fenway, and the South End. Publisher David Jacobs maintains a mixture of big and small news, seriousness and humor, in producing a paper that is remarkably engaging.
There is no website, so I can't refer you to stories in that way. One of my favorite sections is Jennifer Maiola's "Police Report." Drawing on reported crimes, she creates pathos and drama for the casual observer:
On Friday, June 10 at 9:45pm, District 4 detectives were monitoring the Pine Street Inn area for prostitution when they spotted a woman standing on East Berkeley Street. An undercover officer drove by, and she flagged him down. The woman, adorned with a heart tattoo on her chest, got in and told him to drive to a nearby parking lot. She offered to get his heart racing for $40.
Clearly, she wasn't looking for a man after her heart, but this one didn't even want her body: The officer issued her a summons to Boston Municipal Court for sexual conduct for a fee.
But, the paper also acts to maintain standards of service in the community, getting the attention of slow moving governmental bureaucracies:
Residents Worry About Bad Sign
By Ashlee Fairey
Street signs throughout the neighborhood are faded, corroded and covered in graffiti or simply missing, concerned residents say.
"They've been in that condition for a long period of time, particularly on Boylston Street near the Victory Gardens, and where The Fenway meets Boylston Street by Mother's Rest," said resident Matthew Brooks.
...Due to a missing one-way sign this past February, traffic began traveling down Kilmarnock Street in the wrong direction.
With the major media focused on earth-shaking events, it is heartening to know that a newspaper dedicated to the neighborhoods still has a place.