Game Time is a Website. Before that it was strictly a printed publication. Before 2005 it was called Game Night Revue. It’s still a printed publication. For now. With your help.
I’ve told the story several times. A guy from South City went to a game outside Chicago Stadium and stumbled upon a guy selling a fan-run program calling Hawks owner “Dollar” Bill Wirtz every name in the book. That guy, fondly known as Jeffio, figured that hardcore Blues fans would appreciate this kind of guerilla journalism outside the brand new Kiel Center. The first night the building opened in January 1995, GNR was sold outside.
Jeffio published his program/paper/publication/book for 10 years. There was a lockout. Former front-page writer Gallagher took up the torch and launched Game Time in November 2005. I wrote every couple issues that first season and the front page and a bunch of top 11 lists every system after. During the half-season lockout in 2012 and into 2013, Gallagher announced he was done with the paper. I’ve been putting the paper together since Jan. 19, 2013. It was the same night Vladimir Tarasenko scored his first NHL goal against the Detroit Red Wings.
Since then, we haven’t missed a regular season or playoff game played by the Blues. We even published a special edition for the Alumni Game before the Winter Classic, maybe our best issue ever. Whether it’s 10 degrees and snowing or 40 degrees and raining like it was Friday night, we’re out there selling the paper. And Friday night, I questioned the sanity of it all. For a few hours I decided I wouldn’t print one for Sunday.
Sales have struggled the last couple seasons. You could argue the play of the Blues has dampened enthusiasm for the paper. You might also say a desire for the printed word falls a little more every day. The Blues went to complete mobile ticketing this season. They ditched paper. I’m thinking hard about doing the same.
Many nights this season the paper has barely covered printing and vending costs. For the last 10 games in a row, it hasn’t. It’s getting harder and harder to justify the printed program and selling it outside games instead of going to a digital only product. I love the printed paper. I prefer it. However, I can’t be the one paying the money to subsidize it.
In 13 months, it will be the 25th anniversary of the first fan-run program sold outside Blues games. I want to have a huge issue that night. A party. Lots of friends getting together and thinking, “how the hell did we do this for so damn long?” I hope the printed publication makes it that long.
Here’s the bottom line: I need your help. If you like the printed paper or the idea of the printed paper, it needs your support. If you like the idea of fans speaking their minds and being honest and funny about the team, it needs your support. Get one at the next game you go to. Subscribe to the digital product. I’ll give you the details if you email me at email@example.com.
I strongly believe that most enthusiastic Blues fans would love the paper if they give it a chance. Read one and get hooked, I’ve always said. Please share it with your Blues fan friends. If you’ve never read a copy of the paper, email me. I’ll send you Friday night’s. It was a good issue for a good game. We even put out good issues for the bad games.
We need your support Sunday. The game starts at 2 p.m. Our vendors will be out at 12:30 p.m. You can find Amy near the driveway to the garage attached to the arena. You can find her husband Jeff just outside the 14th Street doors. And you can find Rich (he looks like Santa) just outside the City Hall parking lot on the northeast corner of 14th and Clark.
I truly appreciate every person who reads and supports GT. We are a unique thing. The paper in Chicago died, was resurrected and died again. There’s a newsletter sold in the subway station below the Air Canada Centre in Toronto. It’s updated monthly. That’s why we can say there is nothing like us in the NHL. I really want to keep the tradition alive. We need some help to make it happen.
Thanks for reading and supporting Game Time.