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It’s A Birthday, It’s An Anniversary, Magazine Celebrations Are Aplenty… A Mr. Magazine™ Musing.

Celebrating an anniversary or birthday in print is far different than celebrating one on television or online. How do you celebrate the 50th anniversary of a TV show? You may do a special TV program, one of those “now you see it, now you don’t” reflections on past episodes. How do you celebrate the 10th anniversary of a website or an E-newsletter? Good question. Maybe with a podcast or special advertisements or even some birthday swag for loyal customers.

But when it comes to a magazine’s anniversary or birthday (keeping in mind my definition of a magazine, “if it is not ink on paper, it is not a magazine,” that celebration is reflected in the pages of the magazine. It’s a physical celebration that you can feel and touch. It’s an edition you can collect and show off; one that reverberates long after the actual date of the anniversary issue.

Since my last post about the life’s blood of the magazine industry, the new launches, I thought it would be fun to celebrate some milestones within the world of print magazines. Have you ever asked yourself why we celebrate our birthdays every year? I believe it’s reaffirmation that we are still above ground; still among the living.

And it’s the same for magazines that are celebrating these days. Some of them are still living 200 years later like The Saturday Evening Post, some are celebrating a 175-year anniversary, such as Town & Country and Scientific American (which celebrated its 175th last year), and then a few just celebrated one year like Different Leaf, so regardless of the celebration, whether one year or 200 years, it’s a frozen moment in time that only print can capture and that stays with you as a reminder no matter the circumstances. It’s there to nudge you in the ribs with laughter or to simply say life is good and magazines are going strong. Either way, ink on paper is still a viable and relevant way to communicate with an audience.

And as you open the pages of those celebratory magazines, it’s as though you are opening a birthday card or an anniversary wish. And during this pandemic that we all find ourselves  coping with, celebrating a healthy and happy birthday or anniversary is much-needed.

So take a look at some of the magazines I picked up this week that are celebrating milestones in their printed lives. I guarantee you’ll smile and recall a few memories you’ve shared with some of these titles. Along with the beautiful covers you see, there is also a quote or two from some of the editors and publishers as they offer up these anniversary issues. And as is the habit with magazines, there is a special connection with the reader in the editors’ words, that engagement that beckons you to sit a while and relax. Get away from the screen and all the notifications that live in the digital world and just enjoy a respite in time and all the extra things these commemorative issues offer. And remember, whether it’s 200 years or 63 years, every year counts when a magazine celebrates a happy and healthy anniversary. So enjoy and…

Welcome to the party!!

Archie – Celebrating 80 years

“For Archie’s 80th anniversary, we welcome back an Archie tradition in 2021… The Editor’s Notebook! This special feature is your monthly go-to spot to learn about cool behind-the-scenes info, enjoy great art, get sneak peeks at upcoming projects, read special interviews with the talent that make the stories you love, and even have a chance to meet super fans showcasing their Archie collections!” Mike Pellerito, Editor…

Sporting Classics – Celebrating 40 years

“It is hard to believe, but 2020 represented the end of our third decade of publishing Sporting Classics. It was a decade of challenge that became even more challenging as it sputtered into history. But Sporting Classics has done better than survive, done better than most small publishers. And as the giant hands of the universe’s timepiece TikTok us into 2021, it it with great pride that we celebrate our 40th anniversary and look forward to the next 40.” Duncan Grant, Publisher…

Tea Time – Celebrating its 100th issue

“As you picked up this issue, I hope you noticed something a little different about it. I hinted in our previous issue that there would be a “huge surprise” coming in this one. Not only is this our 100th regular issue, but it also has 100 pages. That isn’t just to celebrate our centennial issue, though it certainly is serendipitous.” Lorna Reeves, Editor…

Town & Country – Celebrating 175 years 

“There are many things I miss about our offices on the 27th floor of Hearst Tower, and the T&C archive closet is high on the list. There, in bound volumes of varying condition, is the history of Town & Country, almost all of the 175 years of it. This issue is the first in a big anniversary year for us, and if we were back at the tower we would all be combing through those black-and-white photographs, studying how we wrote about the Spanish flu pandemic a century ago, marveling at those outrageously wonderful cover lines from the 1960s, looking for people we know in the wedding announcements.” Stellene Volandes, Editor in Chief…

The Saturday Evening Post – Celebrating 200 years

“The Long and Winding Road. The Post celebrates its 200th birthday this year. When I mentioned that fact to a young person I know, he gasped, “That’s like, really old, man!” As the most recent editor in this long history, I often feel equally amazed and honored to be part of this legacy. Over two centuries, the Post morphed from a four-page weekly newspaper into a full-color magazine, ultimately gaining a readership of six million at its peak, and becoming one of America’s most popular and successful magazines ever published.” Steven Slon, Editorial Director and Associate Publisher…  

And now in alphabetical order – the complete list:

Archie – Celebrating 80 years

Atlanta – Celebrating 60 years

Different Leaf – Celebrating 1 year

Dogster – Celebrating 50 years

Kingdom – Celebrating its 50th issue

Marvel – Celebrating 80 years

Maui – Celebrating 25 years

Owl – Celebrating 45 years

Rock & Gem – Celebrating 50 years

Simply Pets – Celebrating 4 years

SkyNews – Celebrating 25 years

Sport Rocketry – Celebrating 63 years

Sporting Classics – Celebrating 40 years

Star Wars Insider – Celebrating its 200th issue

Tea Time – Celebrating its 100th issue

The Humanist – Celebrating 80 years

The Saturday Evening Post – Celebrating 200 years

Town & Country – Celebrating 175 years 

Vintage Guitar – Celebrating 35 years

Watch – Celebrating 15 years

These magnificent magazines with their longevity and relevance really drive home the point of how powerful print is when it comes to stamina and engagement with the reader. Celebrating these milestones is no small feat in this age of digital and instantaneous information. These are milestone commemorations, with many of the titles having been handed down through the generations.

And in this time of quarantines and social distancing and mask-wearing, the comfort these printed magazines can bring can’t be lost on any of us.

Until the next time…

See you at the newsstands…