By J.C. LaBar
We are always looking to expand our offerings and find new ways to help promote small businesses. We are pleased to announce that Vocella has acquired two additional properties - the original Facebook social group, “Williston Connections,” and the community newspaper, “The Fortuna Oracle.” We feel these properties will contribute significantly towards helping us to achieve our long-term goals.
Alexa Althoff-Garro, a former salesperson who worked for me at Red Rock Ford, created The Fortuna Oracle in 2021. It began as a newsletter and quickly became popular among local readers. Thanks to the outpouring of support, she started professionally printing and distributing the paper throughout Northwest North Dakota and Northeast Montana. Alexa will remain a contributing writer and has graciously offered to assist in the transition. We are also proud to welcome Jill Vassen, who will continue to serve as Sales Manager, and Heidi Whitney of Westby, who will continue as a contributing writer.
Thursday, February 2nd, marks the first issue printed since the publication took a hiatus back in September 2022. The Oracle will maintain its retro design and continue featuring local community news articles written by local writers. Readers will continue to enjoy their favorite features, such as the Rumor Mill, the Thought of the Week, and fascinating historical facts and stories about the area. The newsstand price will remain the same at $2.00 per copy, and we will continue to offer monthly and yearly subscriptions. Subscribers can visit the website at vocellaoracle.com to browse the paper’s archive. We’re very excited about the future of this publication.
Williston Connections, the first Facebook buy/sell group in Williston, started several years ago and has grown to over 35,000 followers. It spawned several pages with similar variations of the name, including New Williston Connections, Newest Williston Connections, Williston Connections (private), Williston Connections (Unregulated), New Williston Connections 18+, and the list goes on. Legend has it that ages ago, “Williston Connections” altered its rules to discourage harmful posts. The users who were unwilling to follow the rules were subsequently banned, after which they created new groups.
We will continue to assess how best to leverage these properties to serve the community and our clients. We will also evaluate which practices are necessary or excessive and consider a name change to differentiate the group from the confusing mix of others.
Visit us on Facebook at facebook.com/thecommunityshopper and tell us what you think about “The Oracle” and “Williston Connections.” What content would you like to see in The Oracle? Should we leave the original name for “Williston Connections” or should we change it? What name do you think it should be, and what changes would you like to see? Should we make it more open or more restrictive? Be sure to like, share, and follow our page to keep up to date on the latest community news and information.