A Note from Wayne,Publisher/Owner of Washita Valley Weekly

 May 1st, 2003 the first issue of the Washita Valley Shopper was mailed to the residents of Grady and Caddo Counties of Oklahoma. That first run was about 20,000 copies as we tried to cover Grady County and it’s market area for local business. At one point of rising prices the distribution area was shrunk to about 15,000 homes where it stands today. Currently the publication is mailed to the residents of Chickasha, Verden, Anadarko, Pocasset, Amber, Alex, Ninnekah and Rush Springs.
 As the founder-owner and publisher, I want to thank the many advertisers that have made the free paper financially possible through the years, some who have been there since the very early days and have consistently advertised. Evidently we have accomplished exposing your business to the thousands who have read us and responded to your locally provided goods and services.
 Thanks to the many readers who have graciously read our news, commentaries and information on community events through the years. And, yes, I have received many comments, “I love your little paper, and especially those little … stories”. And, I have to thank many friends who have contributed those ‘little stories’, because even though I possess a twisted mind, I could not come up with all of those on my own.
 Thanks to current and past employees and associates who help sell advertising, build ads, deliver the paper, do the billing and all the other tasks that come with running a private enterprise. I have been blessed.
 Thanks to my wife Debbie who started this trek with me and has always been there from the very start.
 To those who think they want to live the American Dream and own their own business, here is my observation. You don’t need to know everything you need to know to start. If you did you probably would not start. Also, plan on putting in a lot more hours than you think. I love talking to business owners, because most have birthed their business and it is their baby and they can talk about it endlessly, and it somewhat like raising a child. The other advice is ‘Hang in there’, inventor Thomas A. Edison said “Many Of Life’s Failures Are People Who Did Not Realize How Close They Were to Success When They Gave Up”.
 We almost gave up during COVID-19, however, during that time of decision I began receiving telephone calls from readers who just wanted me to know how much they loved getting the Washita Valley Community News and how they looked forward every wednesday of finding it in their mailbox. I believed it was a message to me to hang in there.
 19 years goes by pretty fast. I was a mere 55 years old when I started this project and it is the longest I ever held any job. Thanks to everyone who has had a part in it. And, by the way, I started out with nothing and still have most of it.