Ithaca Voice intern Sarah Resman contributed to this reporting.
ITHACA, N.Y. — One of Ithaca’s longstanding media outlets, 14850 Magazine, is celebrating its 25th anniversary with a party this Tuesday and everyone is invited!
The party is happening from 6 – 8 p.m. at Luna Inspired Street Food, located at 310 Stewart Avenue. There will be free food samples as the restaurant launches new items for their fall menu.
A raffle will also be happening with proceeds benefiting the non-profit Just Be Cause, which offers work space for other local non-profits. Check out the Facebook event here.
Editor and Publisher Mark Anbinder caught up with The Ithaca Voice to answer a few questions about 14850 and to tell us a little bit more about what to expect from the party.
Can you tell us a little bit about how 14850 Magazine got started?
14850 Magazine was founded in 1992 by Ithaca College alum and professor Ari Kissiloff, who was at the time working on his MS in Corporate Communication.
14850 Magazine started as a good way to talk about Ithaca area music and entertainment, but it was also an affordable way for Public Communications to advertise the other parts of our business — Copy Central was a public copy shop, Public PC a community computer lab (believe it or not, in the ’90s not everyone had a laptop and hardly anyone had a home Internet connection!), and we offered graphic design and marketing for local businesses.
I wrote for 14850 Magazine a couple of times before joining Ari as a business partner, and we worked on bringing the company and the magazine fully online. We created a web version of each monthly issue, first for new issues and then for all of our back issues, and while we were at it, we helped develop the Cornell Daily Sun’s first web site and the online search for the Ithaca Journal site.
We stopped printing the magazine when printing costs rose to the point where the advertising revenue didn’t really cover that expense, and that’s around the same time we closed the retail shop (Copy Central and Public PC) that was on the second floor above Simeon’s. It let us focus on web design, database development, marketing consulting, and other aspects of the business — including publishing great magazine material online — rather than 30-cent copies and $2 worth of computer usage at a time.
How did 14850 Dining get launched?
I’ve always loved food, so I added the 14850 Dining section to the magazine, starting out in 1999 as an online restaurant directory with short blurbs or capsule reviews, and then adding in-depth restaurant reviews a couple of years later.
We also worked with the WVBR News Department on the idea of 14850 Today as a joint effort. They had local news coverage on the radio but weren’t getting it online, so we teamed up to provide that daily online news resource.
Tell us about the 14850 Today section and how that began
We were almost but not quite ready to launch 14850 Today on 9/11 — but suddenly there was a need for quick turnaround on information, like where people could give blood and how they could check on loved ones in New York City, so 14850 Today went live that afternoon 16 years ago.
We don’t have the depth and breadth of the Ithaca Voice’s coverage, but we do try to keep the Ithaca community informed on what people need to know.
How are you celebrating 25 years of being in this community?
I’m really looking forward to the party on Tuesday! It’s a way for us to thank our readers and our community, put faces to the names we see in reader comments, and of course share one of our favorite local eateries with everyone.
Luna Inspired Street Food is one of our most active advertisers, and we love the creativity of their seasonal menus. I thought of the idea this summer of doing an event with Luna that would let Kevin and Matt show off some new dishes, and they loved the idea when I brought it to them.
I think we’re going to get to try French Onion Mac & Cheese and Ahi Poke Tacos and a couple of other new items from the fall menu that Luna is rolling out this week. Plenty of free food samples, and of course people can pay for whatever food and drinks they’d like.
We’ve donated ads for the Just Be Cause Center fundraising events the last few years — we try to donate ads on 14850.com to a lot of local organizations, and we offer a discounted rate for all non-profits.
The founder, Jerry Dietz, is an old friend of ours as well as a longtime business contact, since Jerry’s CSP Management company represented our landlord in our downtown office, and was one of our earliest web development customers. I love that Jerry has memorialized his late wife, Judy, who was so devoted to lots of Ithaca area non-profits, by making it easier for non-profits to have their own home.
A lot of the local businesses who’ve advertised with us over the years, or we’ve written about, have donated some generous prizes for the raffle on Tuesday, and all of the money will go to the Just Be Cause Center to help them help our area’s non-profits. Just one of the prizes is worth $300, and I know they’re all going to make the winners very happy!
Here’s a list of local businesses who have chipped in:
- Agava Restaurant
- Bandwagon Brewery & Pub
- BoatYard Grill
- Buffalo Street Books
- Carriage House Café
- Collegetown Bagels
- FLX Fit Club
- Ithaca Coffee Company
- Ithaca is Foodies Tours
- Lincoln Street Diner
- Luna Inspired Street Food
- Maxie’s Supper Club
- Papa John’s Pizza
- P&C Fresh
- Quinta Rosa Estate
- The Rook
- Sunny Days of Ithaca
- Terra Rosa Boutique
- Triphammer Wines & Spirits