Start the Presses



Do you think your court of honor is newsworthy? It may well be. Many newspapers, especially those in small towns or suburbs, will run stories about Scouts reaching the rank of Eagle. Some have a standard format, much like wedding or graduation announcements, but others will run a full-blown article. (If you often see bylines that read “Special to the Daily Bugle,” you’ll probably have a good shot at getting your story printed.)

Getting coverage starts with a media release, which can be pretty easy to write. Here are a few tips: Use short, direct sentences and two- or three-sentence paragraphs. Be specific and factual. Make sure your story tells who, what, when, where, why, and how. It also helps to focus on what is unusual, interesting, or relevant to the reader. Put the key details in the first few sentences and supporting information toward the end. (The Eagle Court of Honor Book includes a sample release, as well as a worksheet you can use to gather needed information.)

Mail, email, or fax your release a week before the event to daily newspapers, two weeks before to weekly publications, and as early as possible to monthly publications. Follow up with phone calls. Make sure the publication received your release and ask that they print it.


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