Hometown Son Making History In Our Community
May 28, 2015
In 1975, Dave and Mary Lou Sclair began publishing The Suburban Times, a twice weekly community newspaper from their office in People’s Plaza Shopping Center at Bridgeport & Gravelly Lake, where a Walgreens now stands.
The Lakewood-owned paper covered the region - from Tacoma to Anderson Island - and points in between. Several times the paper had to move to bigger buildings which were constructed to accommodate larger printing presses. Running a newspaper while rewarding, is also demanding, and they sold the paper in 1980.
The matriarch and patriarch of the Sclair family both gave generously to Lakewood and were involved in area Rotary Club. Dave volunteered with St. Mary’s Episcopal Church and the Steilacoom and Lakewood Historical Societies. For a time he was even editor for this very publication. Their kind and giving spirit lives on in son and Lakewood resident, Ben Sclair who is also active in the good works of Rotary. At the public’s persistent urging, and he emphasizes, persistent, in July 2005, Ben set out to bring the popular newspaper back into service to our community, but in a different way, so that he could keep his beloved day job as editor of the monthly General Aviation News. To keep costs low but still deliver important community news frequently, he imagined combining community member-generated stories and announcements with important local topical news and information. He and his staff could update the site twice daily - every morning and afternoon, seven days a week. So far it’s working and without a printing press. The Suburban Times currently has over 1,600 subscribers and 10,000 site visitors each month.
Subscribing to The “Sub” Times is FREE and is sent to you via email. On the website, there are easy to use buttons: Subscribe, How Do I? and Calendar for instance, where you can submit details on an event coming up. For those interested in our area history, the website has over 20,000 archived stories to take a look back. The Lakewood Historical Society was loaned the collected print issues and microfilm from the Sclair family and you are welcome to see and use these resources by visiting the museum at 6211 Mt. Tacoma Dr. SW, Wednesday through Saturday from 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
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