Inside the Newsroom @ A2 Journal

Welcome to Inside the Newsroom @ A2 Journal, a blog written by the newspaper's staff at A2 Journal, a new, weekly, community newspaper covering Ann Arbor. This blog is a place for members of the newspaper's staff to write their thoughts, observations, opinions and other informative pieces they put together while covering the rich history, interesting people, institutions and traditions that make Ann Arbor such a unique community.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Historic Walking Tours at Forest Hill Cemetery

I just got back from participating in the Forest Hill Cemetery walk hosted by Wystan Stevens. I had never heard about these before this year, but my research found they've been going on for more than 30 years. Mr. Stevens relocated to live closer to his daughter last year and it was feared that 2009 would be the end to these historic tours.

Thankfully, he was able to return and host the tours again this year. Unfortunately, it didn't seem too many had heard the news because the turnout on Halloween day seemed a bit low. But he will be hosting two more walking tours - Nov. 7 and 14 at 2 p.m., so if you've been interested but haven't found the time, this might be your last chance. I didn't hear any mention of whether or not he will be returning the years to come, so head out before you miss the opportunity.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Halloween is my favorite holiday

I just love Halloween. I would say it's my favorite holiday. We basically get an entire month of beautiful fall weather, cider mills, donuts, caramel apples, corn mazes, horror films and haunted houses, followed by a holiday where we can eat as much candy as we want.

In honor of the holiday, my husband and I decided to head out to Chelsea and visit the Chelsea Corn Maze. Neither of us had ever been and I had heard that it was a good time.

One half of the corn maze is family-friendly, with clues along the way to guide you in the right direction. The maze takes about a half hour to complete. On the other side is a scarier version of the maze, with dummies along the way during the day. But at night, they hire actors to jump out at you in costume. It's obviously not family friendly but seems like it would be a good time for someone looking for a scare.

I hope to have some more time in the coming weeks to visit a few more cider mills and haunted houses. But for now, I recommend the Chelsea Corn Maze. They are located off 94, get off on Exit 159 and just look for the signs!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Hello Ann Arbor Journal Readers

My name is Jodie Mason and I am the new staff writer for the Ann Arbor Journal. I look forward to receiving feedback and getting to know all my readers, but first, a little information about me.

I was born in Jackson, Michigan, but I lived in Florida for a short time. I moved to Ann Arbor in 2005 and have lived in the area ever since.

I graduated from Eastern Michigan University with a double bachelor's degree in journalism and electronic media and film studies with a concentration in film studies. I also have a background in digital video editing and an associates in English and general studies from Washtenaw Community College.

During college, I worked for The Eastern Echo, first as a copy editor and then as the opinions section editor, as well as working for the Ann Arbor District Library.

I love to cook and bake, watch movies and take my dog for walks with my husband.

I love to write and I have a passion for journalism. I love to cover events and let people know what is happening at city council, in the schools and anywhere around the city.

My favorite restaurant in Ann Arbor is Zingerman's Deli, I love the Michigan Theater and I had my wedding photos taken in graffiti alley. I can genuinely say I care about this city and I look forward to bringing you all the information you need.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Oct. 1 - Lisa's (last) Musings about Every Day Life

I'm back.

But I'm gone.

But not completely.

Let me explain. Today is my last day at the A2 Journal, but after I finish recovering from this new tooth adventure, I'll do some freelancing for the Heritage papers.

So, as a farewell, and I have included a photo of my best friend, Becca, and Driver ... note that the puppy adores her ... taken before we headed to the dentist Wednesday.

Also included is me with the old, rotted chompers. I think that one ended up in the middle.

And me, with the new, fake chompers. I think that one ended up first.

During the last two days I've been recovering from having seven teeth pulled and a deep, deep, deep cleaning of the bottom teeth that can (yippee) be saved. It was a long, long -- did I mention LONG? -- procedure on Wednesday.

And, I was in no shape to blog that day or yesterday, either, as I drifted in and out of a drug-induced mandated recovery.

Which, by the way, I'm supposed to be continuing today. (So don't tell my dentist.)

I only say this in case this post doesn't make a lot of sense. But I learned the really painful way that it's too soon to quit taking the pain meds -- even though I thought the worst was over already.

I learned early this morning that listening to the dentist isn't optional. That not taking the drugs, even though I thought I was feeling better, was NOT a good idea.

So, before I'm lulled off into la-la land again, I wanted to post something.

Although I'm gone, I'm really not going anywhere ... I'll be doing some freelancing, concentrating my efforts on the book I'm writing, the cat magazine, and selling advertising for the owners of the chain of magazines of which I Love Cats is a part.

I'll also continue to review books for Heritage and today, I found out that a monthly newsletter for cozy mystery fans will pick-up some of the reviews I write for the papers. The Website is in case you want to take a look.

I'm not sure what the status of Lisa's Musings will be since I'm not an employee of the paper. But, I'll let you know if I decide to keep going in November under a new name. You can "friend" me on Facebook for an update or e-mail me at

It's been a blast welcoming you through the door to my life. And I hope you enjoyed the insider's view.

So, hello.

And goodbye.


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