The start of something…

Today marks the start of a collaboration of a few Central & West Central Florida hyperlocal sites, beginning with Chuck Welch’s Lakeland Local and Metro I4 News, and Tommy Duncan’s Sticks of Fire. These three sites have covered the goings-on of Central Florida for over 10 years.

Over the past two months we’ve discussed how we could increase coverage of our neighborhoods, while not completely lose touch with our families.

We’ll borrow freely from each other’s expertise. Chuck is a sitesmith. He’s been known to force a WordPress theme or two into submission. Tommy is a passionate observer of society, who is excited about the possibilities of several folks working together.

However, we are both are first, and foremost, writers. We will continue to cover our home areas of Tampa, St. Pete, Lakeland, and Polk County. In the coming weeks we’ll expand from primarily geographical coverage to add a topic site on the nuts and bolts of hyperlocal publishing. We also hope to work with other Central Florida sites to expand news coverage, ideas, and expertise.

For now though, we’re starting slow. We’ve started with a new design for all three sites. Inside you’ll still find the same strong reporting and photography you’ve enjoyed. We’re hoping it’ll be easier to navigate and find some articles you might have missed.

We’ll make tweaks over the next few days as we get reader feedback. So don’t be shy. You can contact Tommy or Chuck or just leave a comment here.