The Pine Journal, “Carlton County’s Newspaper,” is descended from a long line of Carlton County papers, including the Pine Knot and the Carlton County Vidette (1890-1965), newspapers that were around during the Great Fires of 1918. The name comes from the merger of the Cloquet Journal and the Pine Knot in 2002.
Based in Cloquet, the Pine Journal publishes every Thursday and reaches approximately 3,600 readers each week, including newsstand sales. Now a part of the Forum Communications newsgroup, the Pineandlakes Echo Journal is located in the historic West end of Cloquet, in an office once occupied by the Pine Knot. The Northland Smart Shopper, a total-market coverage shopper distributed to 21,000 homes in the county, is also housed in the office at 122 Avenue C in Cloquet, and is distributed on Fridays and Saturdays.
This award-winning weekly newspaper and the shopper have a small but dedicated staff of five people, along with numerous freelance writers and photographers who help report the news and sports across Carlton County. Coverage includes the seven school districts in the county, including Cloquet, Esko, Carlton, Barnum, Moose Lake, Wrenshall and Cromwell-Wright. The pages of this paper are packed with local stories and stunning local photos — the Pine Journal truly is a hyperlocal newspaper, while maintaining the high standards of journalism people expect from a newspaper.
The Pine Journal’s most recent Minnesota Newspaper Association’s Better Newspaper Contest awards (in circulation class 2,500 to 5,000) include the following from last year:
First Place : Use of Photography as a Whole
First Place: Local Breaking News Coverage
First Place : Social Issues Story
Third Place: Columnist