Me: ‘Hello, my name is Josh Munce and I produce Midco Sports Magazine…’
Athlete: ‘Magazine…like…I’ll find it on a news-stand…kind of magazine?’
Me: ‘No…more like a television magazine show.’
Athlete: *Blank Face
Me: ‘60 Minutes is a news magazine and Dateline is a news magazine...It’s a television show with a variety of subjects, features, combining interviews and entertainment. We do the exact same…but with sports stories.’
Athlete: ‘Like E:60?’
Me: ‘Absolutely…but we have a local focus.’
This is an example of one of the two exchanges I generally have when I first approach someone about telling their story. The other conversation tends to be a bit longer; they’ll say they’ve seen the show and ask about a specific story, how we came up with it, and sometime details of what the subject of the story is doing now. Which brings me to the reason for this blog: to share a little insight of some of the behind the scenes goings-on of stories we’ve done and those we’re currently working on.
If you know me or have been around me even a little, you know that I love talking about Midco Sports Magazine. I mean LOVE talking about it, sometimes ad nauseam. But it’s hard not to love it. It’s hard not to root for those that are striving to better themselves. As I put together these stories, I get to know these athletes, coaches, and fans on a personal level. I start pulling for them and hoping they do well in both their sport and their life. Every story we tell on Midco Sports Magazine is centered around someone from Minnesota, North Dakota, or South Dakota with a unique situation. Some have had to overcome uncertain odds and others just want to compete. My only hope is that we tell their story to the best of our ability and are able to get as many eyes on it as we can…that way viewers can see just how many amazing people live in our region.
Looking ahead to our May show, we’re working on three more heart-felt stories.
Jody Norstedt – our ‘new guy’ in Fargo – has a pretty amazing story on Parker Hanson, an ace pitcher for the University Minnesota-Crookston who was born with one hand. Hanson said in his interview, "I don't look at my arm as a disability; I look at it as an ability to inspire"
David Brown will share Jerry Schemmel’s story. Schemmel, originally from Madison, SD, is now a radio announcer for the Colorado Rockies. His story is one of tragedy and redemption. He is highly regarded in the sports world. When David Brown reached out to Major League Baseball about telling Schemmel’s story they were more than thrilled to let us come to a Rockies game. They gave us permission not only to be at the game but walk around the stadium to shoot cover video. To give you an idea on how rare that is, David was given a media badge with a number 1415 on it … while I had a photog badge with only a 24. After meeting Schemmel, I know why the MLB was so willing to let us go where most aren’t allowed.
The third is Tom Nieman’s story, and it’s one we are still putting together as I’m writing this. It’s about Bob Bartling from Brookings, SD. He’s 90 years old, and he’s a character. Bartling started running in his forties. He told me he still gets out almost every day, but now he tends to ‘shuffle’ rather than run. Bartling has his own section about running at the Briggs Library at South Dakota State University, and he was one of the first people in the country to sell a new brand of running shoes in the 1970s … by a company called Nike.
Midco Sports Magazine premieres a new episode the first Monday of the month at 6:30 PM. If you’ve had the chance to catch our show, thanks for watching. If you’ve never seen our show, tune in – you won’t be disappointed.