‘Your Take’ going strong after 10 years

Published 12:00 am Friday, April 15, 2016

Ten years and two months, 3,717 photographs later, the “Your Take” feature of The Natchez Democrat keeps going strong.

The daily feature on the back page next to weather continues to be one of the most popular sections of the newspaper.

I am not surprised given the many interesting and amazing things are readers have submitted over the years.

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Did you get a chance to see the photo of that double rainbow crossing D’Evereux Drive? Wasn’t that spectacular?

Or the many incredible pictures of eagles, hawks, geese and backyard birds that make Southwest Mississippi home.

My favorite picture continues to be an image that caught the reflection of that dog drinking water from the pier during the sunset. Now that was a classic photograph.

It and countless others show how wonderful our little corner of the world really is.

In 2005, then-publisher Todd Carpenter suggested the feature as a way to help readers play a more active role in their newspaper.

The feature was an instant hit. Photos immediately streamed in by e-mail and in person, so much so that a six-week waiting list was not uncommon back in those early days.

Today, the waiting list has shortened a bit. Readers still have to wait a week or two for their photos to appear.

That is why I write to encourage our readers to keep the photos coming, to continue to tell the wonderful story of the Miss-Lou in pictures.

Bring in your favorite snapshots to the newspaper at 503 N. Canal St. or send them digitally by e-mail at yourtake@natchezdemocrat.com.

If our newspaper readership is anything like my family, the “Your Take” feature ranks behind obituaries as the most favorite part of the paper. In many of the houses and businesses I visit, it has become commonplace for me to see clippings of “Your Takes” taped to refrigerators and bulletin boards across the Miss-Lou.

Over the years, we have seen many portraits of the region. From the twinkling eyes of children playing to the eager smiles of graduates to the look of gratitude and wisdom in the faces of grown-ups.

And of course, there have been celebrities. Since we started the “Your Take” feature, Brett Favre, Jesse Jackson, Morgan Freeman and others have made guest appearances on our back page.

Of course, we have seen dogs and cats, ranging from the tiniest Chihuahua to the fattest cat.

There have been horses, yes. But there have also been monkeys, albino squirrels, pelicans, alligators, snakes, turtles, goats, deer, opossums, peacocks and raccoons.

And, of course, we can’t forget the gardens and flowers that have been featured. Each picture of the beautiful plants grown by residents has been another addition to our beautiful bouquet of pictures.

There is no mistaking how attached our residents are to the landscape. Beautiful pictures of the sun setting over the Mississippi River, Lake Concordia and Lake St. John have graced the back page many, many times. Each multicolored painted sky is a testament to the beautiful country in which we live.

Thanks to our readers, an amazing story has been told through the photographs that have been submitted to the “Your Take” feature.

Keep them coming. There is more of the story to be told.

I can’t wait.


Ben Hillyer is the news editor of The Natchez Democrat. He can be contacted at 601-445-3540 or by e-mail at ben.hillyer@natchezdemocrat.com.