Country Media, based in Salem, Oregon, announced the closing of the Adams County Record in Hettinger, The Herald in New England, and The Dunn County Herald in Killdeer in the papers' Friday, Nov. 29 editions, the North Dakota Newspaper Association Bulletin reports. But less than a week later, Jill Friesz of the Grant County News "had become the new owner of the Hettinger and New England publications, and she published them on time without missing an edition." The Dunn County Herald remains out of business; it had the largest circulation of the three papers: 1,624.
NDNA Executive Director Steve Andrist “reached out to me last Monday afternoon and told me that those papers were closing as of Friday,” Friesz told James B. Miller Jr. of The Bismarck Tribune. “He kind of put a bug in my ear that maybe that would be a great opportunity for me to grow a little bit and take care of those communities.”
The purchase thwarted the creation of a news desert of four adjacent counties. There are no newspapers in Slope County, which has only 700 people, or in Sioux County, most of which is part of the Standing Rock Indian Reservation.