Meet the new South County reporter

  • LARABEE

Staff Writer
Published: 6/18/2021 5:08:11 PM

It’s been a little under a month since my trial by fire here at the Greenfield Recorder. In this short time I have covered numerous Town Meetings, a slew of graduations and even the construction of baby coffins, all as I was learning more about a region I had only been to a handful of times in my life.

My first day on the job had me traveling to Sunderland for a march marking one year since George Floyd’s death. That first day has set the tone for my experience here as it was where I learned how deeply this region cares about its local newspaper.

The Franklin County community has welcomed me with open arms, which has helped me settle into my first professional reporting role.

I was born and raised just over the hills in the Berkshires in the town of Cheshire. I decided I had enough of small-town living and wanted to try city life, so I attended Boston University in pursuit of a chemistry degree.

Yes, a chemistry degree.

It was about two months of grueling chemistry exams beating me up and down the streets of Boston before I decided I needed to try something else. I deliberated for only a week and eventually chose journalism because I have fond memories of watching the early morning news with my parents as a kid.

The next semester I found myself in Communications 101 and the rest was history. I spent three years working at The Daily Free Press, Boston University’s independent student newspaper (student news is real news!), as a sports reporter and the sports editor before transferring to the campus and city section after the pandemic brought sports to a temporary halt.

If 2020 had never happened, I probably would not be working here. A raging pandemic and the country’s reckoning with racial justice altered my priorities and I no longer had a raging desire to be a sports writer — although I won’t be straying too far from sports coverage since I’ve been called out of the bullpen to cover local playoff games this summer for the Recorder.

That isn’t to say sports aren’t important, but the role of local reporting has never been so integral to our country. Local newspapers are one of the vital tools we have in stemming the tide of polarity that is washing over the country.

One of my favorite parts about journalism is sharing stories about the community. I have the privilege of meeting so many interesting people and this job lets me introduce them to you as well. Sharing stories of good deeds or creativity brings the entire community together, no matter what politics you believe in.

As I make my hour commute from Cheshire to Greenfield most days, I have a lot of time to think. I often find myself thinking of the kind words the community has told me, whether it’s how much they love reading the Recorder or how important they think local news is.

In this short month, I have enjoyed meeting the people of Deerfield, Conway, Sunderland and Whately, as well as residents of the rest of the county when covering Saturday assignments. I am so fortunate to find a reporting role in a community that truly cares about its newspaper and I look forward to meeting more of you as we all emerge from this pandemic.

Chris Larabee can be reached at clarabee@recorder.com or 413-930-4081.




Greenfield Recorder

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