The Mountain Laurel
The Journal of Mountain Life

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from the
Heart of the Blue Ridge

A Special Thanksgiving Message to Our Readers

By Bob Heafner © 1983-2012

Issue: November, 1983

With November being the traditional month of Thanksgiving, we’ve been wondering how best to say thanks to our many readers and subscribers. It seemed to us that a simple thank you just was not enough. When we dived into The Mountain Laurel in March, we had no idea what we were getting into. We had just enough money between us to buy a typewriter and pay the first month’s printing and postage costs. We held our breath while we waited for the first subscription to come in. Not only would it be a sign that folks enjoyed our efforts but honestly, we needed the cash to get us through our next month’s printing and postage cost.

Our very first subscribers were Mr. and Mrs. Cruise Howell, of Meadows of Dan, Virginia. I’ll never forget how excited we were when their subscription arrived in the mail.

Since that first issue of 5,500 copies, we have been extremely fortunate. Our monthly circulation has exploded to over 25,000 per month. That first issue was sold by 14 local stores and businesses. Our last issue was sold in over 2,000 retail outlets in eight states. We now have subscribers spread across America, even Alaska and Hawaii; even Puerto Rico and Africa. For three country folks, learning the hard way, it’s been all we can do just to keep up with The Mountain Laurel’s growth.

Letters have come in from all across America; letters of encouragement and wishes of good luck, letters that picked our spirits up and helped us over the rough spots. Folks from all over have been so nice and have gone out of their way to give us a helping hand. Contrary to what we are often told, there are a lot of nice people in the world; folks that still go out of their way to lend a helping hand. From the bottom of our hearts, we’d like to say thank you to everyone for your help and encouragement. But more importantly, we’d like to thank you for reaffirming some old fashioned beliefs; beliefs in the goodness of people everywhere and the willingness of each of us to help if we can. The best news I know is that there is still good news.

Thank you, everyone, for your wonderful response to The Mountain Laurel. We appreciate every letter and although space will not permit us to print them all, every one is saved and treasured.

You have made this “The Thanksgiving of our Lives.” Thank you so very much!