Town Hall Meetings
Consider Hosting a Town Hall Meeting in Your Community!
Is there something weighing on the minds of the residents in your community? Are your readers looking for the opportunity to voice their opinion or gather more information about something relevant to your area? If so, consider hosting a town hall meeting, which will bring local residents and experts together to compare thoughts and ideas and best of all, it's easy to do!
The Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association (PNA) Foundation has partnered with the Pennsylvania Cable Network (PCN) to sponsor town hall meetings throughout the Commonwealth. Town hall meetings emphasize, in a very demonstrative way, that newspapers are good citizens and are committed to their community.
A Town Hall Meeting on Pension Reform was held March 26, 2015, in Harrisburg.
To get started, identify an issue that has strong engagement, both pro and con, within your coverage area. Letters to the Editor are a good gauge: Any topics that have prompted prolonged debate within the Letters section are strong candidates.
For example, The Potter-Leader Enterprise (Coudersport) hosted a town hall meeting about the deer management program in the Coudersport area and its impact on life in Potter County; Trib Total Media sponsored an event focused on the completion of the Mon/Fayette Expressway and its impact on the revitalization of the Monongahela River Valley; The Hazleton Standard-Speaker promoted a town hall meeting about diversity and how to overcome the obstacles it creates in their community; The Morning Call (Allentown) hosted a town hall meeting on table games and its impact on Bethlehem/Allentown residents and the surrounding community.
Once you have decided upon a topic, the PNA Foundation staff will coordinate the overall logistics and schedule, planning conference calls between your newspaper and PCN to clarify any questions pertaining to the issue or general format of the meeting. We will also provide you with outlines and tip sheets for hosting a town hall meeting.