This is not goodbye, it’s see you later

Covering the Anthony Ford Pond Hockey Tournament

Mankato Times

MANKATO, MINN. — The Mankato Times is taking a hiatus after six years of publication. Joe Steck, the founder and editor of the paper said that the paper will be put on hold due to him taking a position as the veterans outreach coordinator for Congressman Jim Hagedorn in the First Congressional District.

“I have a lot of great memories from these past six years. I published 13,505 articles, having written most of them,” said Steck “It was a very rewarding experience and I do miss the daily interactions with the community. My new position allows me to work with and for veterans throughout southern Minnesota. This is a cause I believe in and I wake up every day excited to help others.”

I always had fun at the Maverick games

Steck said he is very thankful for those who put faith in him as a new source of news.

“I want to thank everyone who worked with me in the community. I especially want to thank Mankato West High School Coach Crissy Makela and Loyola’s coach B.J. Peterson for taking me under their wing and teaching me the game of soccer when I started the paper. Coach Sarah Kirby also¬† helped me out a lot when she coached West girls volleyball. The coaches at Maple River High School and Minnesota State University Mankato were also very kind to me,” Steck said “Many of the local artists also helped me expand my education by inviting me to art openings. Dana Sikkila, the owner of the 410 Project, always made me feel welcome and explained things in ways that a non-artist could understand.”

Covering the Mankato West Girls Soccer Team at State was so much fun!

Steck said he has a few regrets over the past six years.

“I never let people know how sick I was while running the paper. I would do interviews, and sometimes I didn’t write the article due to my health,” he said “I was told that I was having panic attacks, but it turns out their were heart incidents, including heart attacks, that were causing me all of the problems for nearly six years. I am just happy I didn’t kick over while interviewing a kid, because I had heart attacks while interviewing a number of times.”

410 Project Director Dana Sikkila is a true Mankato legend. Her passion for art and biking has opened many doors for people in our community.

Even though Steck will be working with veterans, he said he may still write articles from time to time.

“I have a few interviews that I want to publish but have not had the time write yet,” he said “Thank you everyone for your support over the past six years. This community means the world to me, and believe it or not, you helped save my life by giving me purpose.”

I am back where I started after high school, serving our nation, this time as a veterans outreach coordinator.

Joe Steck can be reached at mankatotimes@gmail.com

 

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