UPDATE: Hudson Star-Observer Downsizing, Moving Into Old Library

The oldest continuing business in Hudson — the Hudson Star-Observer — is moving out of its Locust Street location and into the former library building at 901 Fourth St. Newspaper staff will vacate the Locust Street office by Oct. 31.

UPDATE (11:35 a.m., Sept. 12, 2012): A week after news broke about the leaving its downtown office space in favor of journalists working from their homes, Editor Doug Stohlberg has confirmed that they will be opening a new office.

Suite 140 of the Hudson Professional Building, formerly the , will house the community newspaper office. The space is 215 square feet and includes use of building meeting areas and commonspace for $195 per month.

It will be a significant downgrade from the 15,000-square-foot space just a block off of Hudson's main street.

The Hudson Professional Building has several other spaces available ranging from 210 square feet with a window for $271 per month to 1,620 square feet for $1,995 per month.


ORIGINAL POST (8:08 p.m., Sept. 5, 2012): The oldest continuing business in town — the — is changing the way it's doing business.

A "for lease" sign recently went up on the newspaper office, and according to Jon Picard, owner of the Locust Street Business Center, the more than 15,000 square feet occupied by the newspaper will be vacated by Oct. 31 when operations are moved to River Falls.

"They've been there just about forever," Picard said. "They started down on Walnut Street in 1859 and moved up to Locust Street probably around 1980. That used to be their print shop and everything. Everything used to come out of that location until they started cutting it off."

Though people will no longer be able to pick up the weekly paper at the brick-and-mortar location or stop in to chat with reporters, editors and ad sales personnel, the publisher said that they can give the journalists a call and they'll be happy to meet with them.

"We're still the Hudson Star-Observer. We've been there over 150 years and we'll continue to still be there. Nothing's really changed," said Steve Messick, division director and publisher of RiverTown Multimedia, the newspaper's parent company. "Our reporters are still in Hudson, Wisconsin. They will be working from home."

Messick wouldn't comment on whether any employees would be let go as a result of the changes. 

"At this point in time, the only decision that was made is that we're not renting any space in Hudson. We've moved our people back to their homes kind of like you are," Messick said referring to Patch.

Messick said the change would get the newspaper's journalists closer to the public.

From the Hudson Patch business directory:

The Hudson Star-Observer is the oldest continuing business in Hudson. The city's weekly newspaper has been in operation since 1854. The paper is now owned by Rivertowns, which is a division of Forum Communications. The building on Locust Street in Hudson's historic downtown district serves as office space for some of the paper's reporters, editors and advertising staff. 

With the recent success of moving into a bigger space down the block and Postmark Grille preparing to open across the street, Picard believes office space in the Locust Street Business Center will become more valuable in the near future.

In addition to the newspaper leaving, Resolution Engineering is planning to vacate its 4,000-square-feet space in the building and move into a larger space on Heggen Street, according to Picard.

Evjen Rattara September 06, 2012 at 02:06 AM
They stopped being a newspapper a long time ago. Now they just mimic the thoughts of the establishment and quite poorly I might add....
Phil McGraw September 06, 2012 at 03:05 AM
Maybe Messick will come to the logical conclusion to hire reporters that actually seek the truth...what a monumental change that would be!
MrsPeel September 06, 2012 at 04:01 AM
Would that mean that Margaret Ontl woud no longer be quoting and cutting and pasting from Ann Coulter?
Micheal Foley September 06, 2012 at 04:04 AM
I know a lot of folks have strong opinions about the local paper, but let's please keep these comments from getting into personal-attack territory.
Evjen Rattara September 06, 2012 at 04:04 AM
Not a chance, people with skills want to be paid and sometimes speak their minds. That would never be tolerated at the HSO....
Evjen Rattara September 06, 2012 at 04:06 AM
I always sleep better under the watchful eye of Chief Foley....
Micheal Foley September 06, 2012 at 04:08 AM
You crack me up.
Evjen Rattara September 06, 2012 at 04:45 PM
Maybe now that they work from home the HSO will no longer look like they published from the back of a truck. Then again....
Vonnie September 06, 2012 at 10:09 PM
Say it isn't so! Willis MIller will not be resting easy in his grave tonight! FYI, HSO moved to Locust street in 1987.
Renee September 07, 2012 at 01:36 AM
"We're still the Hudson Star-Observer. We've been there over 150 years and we'll continue to still be there. Nothing's really changed," You'll still be there? Ah, HELLO!!!!??????? We want you HERE! Like we are! But you will be 'there' and probably more and more outsource stories and columns. You are corporate America at it's worst - no soul. No better than every Walmart that moves to town and shuts down the locals. Thanks for running another time and some times honored, local institution into the ground. For the first time I'm glad Willis isn't around. What a sad, sad day for Hudson.
Evjen Rattara September 07, 2012 at 05:05 AM
Chief Foley can you feel the hate? Everybody knows the HSO is a rag but what else can we do Chief Foley, What?
Micheal Foley September 07, 2012 at 05:23 AM
If the current service providers aren't meeting the demands of the market, a smart capitalist might choose to invest capital to start a competing business and capture market share. I didn't think I would have to explain capitalism to you of all people, Evjen.
Evjen Rattara September 07, 2012 at 06:35 AM
Oh Oh ! Chief Foley is broken, he's broken...What will we do? Who will be our moral compass to get us through the darkness of reality....
Micheal Foley September 07, 2012 at 06:55 AM
Broken? What do you mean?
Evjen Rattara September 07, 2012 at 07:25 AM
I put this in and it stayed in pending.....Chief Foley, you are not just another pretty face, a good idea you have got. Incorporating the entire Valley would be the ticket. I’m sure Hudson is not the only small town sickened by the Forum Communication’s generic approach to reporting. Advertisements would be easy to secure. Along with some quality, timely reporting and an Editor’s Letters section that pushes the bounds of free speech and a paper is born. Book style like the Post. People are tired of reading the white washed crap the HSO serves with no shame…..
Micheal Foley September 07, 2012 at 07:27 AM
What stayed in pending? I'm not sure what you're talking about there.
Evjen Rattara September 07, 2012 at 07:31 AM
That post, its on my screen as pending and now as a post. Chief Foley you must be tired, for Internet Police Chief Foley runs a tight ship....
Micheal Foley September 07, 2012 at 07:34 AM
You're probably tripping the spam filter alerts. People who post multiple comments in rapid succession late at night are usually spammers.
Evjen Rattara September 07, 2012 at 07:39 AM
The so called spam, was posted 51 minutes after the last spam I put up. But some may say thats rapid succession, I would say ...NOT !!!
Micheal Foley September 07, 2012 at 07:52 AM
Maybe it was all the repeated words. Not really sure. It was just a theory.
Evjen Rattara September 07, 2012 at 10:47 AM
Chief Foley, Chief Foley remember the rule never assume anything, because when you assume you make an ......
Micheal Foley September 07, 2012 at 12:01 PM
Just trying to be helpful and offer a possible explanation for you.
Evjen Rattara September 07, 2012 at 02:39 PM
Chief Foley there is some things that should never be explained. Like the mystery of the Universe, did we go to the moon and is light particle or wave. Other than that I will entertain any frivolous ideas you have Chief. Because Foley Foley he’ our man, if can’t do it Meg can….
Karen Schmeets September 07, 2012 at 04:38 PM
Some one needs some serious therapy. I won't mention any names.
Evjen Rattara September 07, 2012 at 04:43 PM
Chief Foley I think that was a personal attack directed at you. Karen, do not ask for whom the bell tolls, for it tolls for the. Chief Foley is a good man, and don't you forget it Bubba my boy!
Bruce Bergeron September 07, 2012 at 05:11 PM
Now thats funny right there!
Micheal Foley September 12, 2012 at 04:58 PM
I just posted an update. They are moving into the Hudson Professional Building at 901 Fourth St. — the old library building. I heard a tip about this last night and talked to Steve Rorem in the building's leasing office this morning to confirm it, but he wouldn't comment. Then, just as I was leaving, Editor Doug Stohlberg, Assistant Editor Randy Hanson, Photographer Margaret Ontl and Reporter Meg Heaton walked in. Stohlberg confirmed that they were moving into Suite 140.
Micheal Foley September 12, 2012 at 06:06 PM
The Star-Observer is now announcing the move on their website: http://www.hudsonstarobserver.com/event/article/id/48516/
D Paul Rode September 12, 2012 at 06:10 PM
Evjen Rattara, go outside and get some sunlight on your skin.... Foley, stop feeding your trolls...
Evjen Rattara September 12, 2012 at 08:34 PM
Oh Ya! Well for your information pale is in, isn’t that right Chief Foley. Besides outside isn’t so great, I’ve been a shut-in for almost ten years and I’m doing just fine. Except for that rash you gave me.


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