After nearly 36 years of operation, the popular Providence alt-weekly publication Providence Phoenix will shut its doors next week, following the release of a Farewell Issue on October 16th.
"It is with great sadness that I relay the news that the Providence Phoenix will be shutting down," said Phoenix editor Philip Eil via Facebook. "Next week's October 16 issue will be our farewell issue."
Founded in 1979, the Providence Phoenix was originally known as the NewPaper. Phoenix Media acquired the publication in 1988 and it was re-branded as the Providence Phoenix in the early 1990s. The paper had become a Providence staple, and a favorite source to many for music, food, arts, and magazine-style news.
“It is unquestionably sad to see the Providence Phoenix cease publishing and realizing the void it will leave,” said Phoenix Media/Communications Group COO Everett Finkelstein. “I’m, however, somewhat gratified, knowing we’ve left an indelible mark on our loyal readers who for 36 years have turned to us for our unique coverage of the rich culture, politics, and lifestyles of our community. But the unhappy reality of today’s media world is that the continual shrinkage of print advertising revenue and the increasing costs of producing an award-winning newspaper such as the Providence Phoenix made this no longer economically viable.”
Providence Phoenix' sister publication The Boston Phoenix closed its doors in 2013. No statement has been issued regarding the fate of The Portland Phoenix, the other remaining sibling publication.
"It's sad," said WBOB editor Kevin Aherne. "I normally spend my Sunday morning challenging myself to Matt Jones' crossword puzzles."
Full text of Mindich’s statement to Providence Phoenix staff:
“About a year and a half ago when the decision to shutter the Boston Phoenix was made, it was my deep desire to keep publishing the Providence Phoenix and keep its extraordinary legacy alive.
“Sadly, after making massive budgetary adjustments in order to trim the costs of operations to a level where we could at least financially break-even, while also ensuring we could keep the paper’s editorial quality at the exceptional level we all demanded - the raw reality of continued losses month after month finally had to be confronted. After an enormous amount of analysis looking for resolutions and growth opportunities, along with profound personal soul-searching, I have made the difficult decision that the time has come to close the Providence Phoenix.
“There is no adequate way to thank everyone here today, and all of those who over the years have devoted their efforts and amazing talents to this marvelous enterprise and to our Phoenix family.
“When the final issue is put to bed, printed and distributed and we thank our many readers and advertisers, the City of Providence, and the State of Rhode Island – we do so with great pride in knowing that during the decades we have been here we made a difference, and for that we should all be truly proud.
“Again, my deepest gratitude and sincerest thanks to each and every one of you.”
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