Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The Orlando Newseum

I went to the home of Jeff Kunerth who has a sizable collection of all things news related. Jeff has worked for the Orlando Sentinel for 35 years and his life's work has always been journalism. His father taught journalism for 30 years at Iowa State University and at an early age Jeff was hitting the streets before sunrise to deliver the local paper. Since he didn't like having to collect paper money door to door, he recruited his brother who enjoyed the work. His brother now runs a small paper in Idaho, of course handling all the finances.
Jeff collected press passes and desk name plates from employees as they left the Orlando Sentinel. He has about 30 press passes and 50 name plates. He finally stopped collecting as reporters were being layed off 30 to 40 at a time. Instead he has the long lists of names that appeared in the paper the week of the layoffs.
Jeff builds miniature newsstands with humorous themes out of cigar boxes. Here he is making an Obama election day themed newsstand. In the box in his lap are hundreds of newspaper front pages which were reduced multiple times on his laser printer. He carefully cut and trimmed these until they fit into the overall newsstand layout. The newsstand he is building is sitting on the card table. You can see the small shelves he has built on which the newspapers will be stacked. A small TV set is on and a black and white Film Noir movie is playing. Jeff never glances at the TV but the period music perfectly compliments the nostalgic feel of the news related miniatures.

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