You ever pick up the newspaper, turn on the TV or scroll through news on your phone and think, “Man, does anything good happen anymore?”

Some people say that’s just the world today; I say that’s how the world has always been. We’ve always had feel-good, happy news right beside bad, downright ugly news. People have always gone around shooting each other — back in the days of deadly saloons and today as we approach 2020. 

There is a lot of crime; I do not deny that. There does seem to be more hate than ever. But bad news has always been there. One of the reasons it seems so much more prevalent is because the rise of social media and the fact ways we are able to produce the news have become so much more advanced. 

We face a lot of tough news here in Tallapoosa County from day to day but we see a lot of good things too, and sometimes I think it gets buried. 

Today’s front page features a story on Jim Pearson Elementary School students who visited what they called “community heroes” around Alexander City. They started their morning out at the Alexander City Police Department then headed over to the Alexander City Fire Department — two teams full of true heroes in our community. 

You can see their faces lit up in each of the photos taken of them Friday morning. 

They winded up here at The Outlook, and man was it a sight to see.

About 60 second-graders piled in our office to be greeted by costumed staff reindeer Tippy Hunter, Kat Raiford, Betsy Iler, Brandy Sims and Amy Passaretti plus Julie Harbin also known as “Itsy the Elf” — all while staff photographer Cliff Williams snapped shots of the happenings.

The hyper hooligans then crammed into our conference room as my trusty sports editor and buddy Lizi Arbogast and I demonstrated how we collect their letters to Santa from their teachers, type them all up, put them in the computer then lay them out on a page. We showed them a “telegram” from Santa — thanks to our jack-of-all-trades business manager Angela Mullins — addressed to our staff, ensuring we’d meet our deadline set for the week before Christmas so he would get his paper on time to see our Letters to Santa section and see the students’ wish lists. Santa also wanted to make sure his address and subscription were up to date. No worries, big man; we’ve got you.

The oohs and ahhs were too cute. The reindeer led the giggly students to our in-house press room and explained how the pages are sent back there then printed on the big press and delivered off to the North Pole. 

They thought the trip at The Outlook was over but we had retail advertising manager Katie Wesson’s parents waiting around the corner for them, dressed as Mr. and Ms. Claus by a Christmas tree our wonderful Ms. Linda Ewing put together. 

The faces were priceless.

All of the staff at The Outlook was honored to be chosen as one of the places these kids wanted to visit for their field trip. 

That’s just once piece of feel-good news I wanted to share. There’s so much else going on in the world, such as the FDA approving a breakthrough cystic fibrosis drug that could treat up to 90% of patients; President Donald Trump signing a $1.8 billion autism funding bill; a Georgia nurse “adopting” a homeless autistic man who needed a heart transplant to help him get a new heart; and even a bus station in Brazil that opens its doors to homeless dogs and gives them special beds to protect them from the winter temperatures.

How heartwarming are all of the above headlines? There are good things happening every single day here in Tallapoosa County, in the United States and across the globe. You just have to open your eyes and see them — not just the negative, bad news.

At The Outlook, we strive to report all sorts of news — feel-good news, crime, education and everything in between — and we’re working hard every single day to get much better with that. 

News is just that — news. We don’t get to choose it or report on just what we want to. It’s a mixture of all the things happening in the world and every bit of it is important. But never get so overwhelmed by the bad stuff you forget about the good stuff. 


Santana Wood is the managing editor of Tallapoosa Publishers’ newspapers. She can be reached at

Santana Wood is the managing editor of The Outlook.