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Our Story

Publisher Suzy Hopkins

 

Welcome to Friends and Neighbors, a quarterly, full-color magazine devoted to celebrating and informing Gold Country boomers, seniors and their families. Whether they’ve lived here for a year or a lifetime, these “experienced citizens” are living treasures whose contributions past and present deserve recognition.

While FAN has a “senior” focus, I think of it as a family magazine, given the starring role families play in the stories recounted here – and in the magazine’s origins. Friends and Neighbors is the product of my years as a newspaper reporter, and also the product of my half-century as a daughter.

My mother raised six children on a librarian’s salary. I interviewed her about those early years, and her own family’s history, after a broken hip sidelined her at age 83. In the stories she shared we can still hear her unique voice. I went on to write other memoirs, uncovering remarkable stories and photos tucked away in local seniors’ memories and scrapbooks. In doing so I came to appreciate the lessons of history and the ordinary, extraordinary individuals who lived it.

That appreciation extends not just to the vibrant, active seniors who contribute so much to our community, but also to those for whom aging brings especially difficult challenges.

My mother’s health problems made me keenly aware of those challenges and of families’ needs as they grapple with medical, financial and emotional issues. I hope seniors and their families will find the magazine useful in this respect. Each issue features stories about fitness and health, community groups, volunteerism, veterans, local history, senior safety and pets. In FAN, you’ll meet people who are passionate about each of these topics.

The magazine, which debuted in June 2008, went from concept to reality in 12 months, thanks to my own friends and neighbors – including Art Director Dave Bonnot and the creative team that shaped the magazine and website. Thanks also to FAN’s community columnists, all busy professionals or retirees who generously share their expertise with our readers.

Special appreciation goes to our Advertisers, whose heartfelt support for seniors was evident in their early commitment to the magazine. If you enjoy FAN, please support these great local businesses who make this magazine possible.

My hope is that FAN serves as a vital resource, linking boomers and seniors with information, businesses and services, and with other residents who share an active interest in our foothill communities.

Suzy Hopkins, Editor/Publisher