In the news business, sometimes the worst part about major events is writing about their anniversaries. They arrive year after year with all the predictability and excitement of receiving Christmas fruitcake from your Aunt Helga. There’s usually no new information to offer, and the hapless journalist gets stuck trying to come up with an interesting story.
So I was pleasantly surprised by the Alamo Immortal project published by the San Antonio Express-News, which put a creative twist on the old story of the Battle of the Alamo and its 175h anniversary.
The idea was the brainchild of Dean Lockwood, director of news production at the newspaper. A history buff who knew the big anniversary for the Alamo was coming up, Dean started brainstorming a few months ago about new, original ways to cover the event.
“Sad to say, it’s something that can get a little taken for granted in the media,” Dean told me. “It’s something we cover year after year. You know, the same picture — Dawn at the Alamo.
“We could have gone that route and done the obligatory feature and a couple of other little things and everybody would have been fine with that,” he said. But Dean wanted to try something new, and he brainstormed with art director Adrian Alvarez.