Sunday, 1 August 2010

CalSun at 30

The Calgary Sun turns 30 on Tuesday.

Will there be a party? Cake? Columns about how the paper was launched days after the Sun paid Lord Thomson less than a million for the Calgary Albertan, a rather sedate morning business tabloid?

Will those who helped launch the spirited Calgary Sun - Les Pyette, Tom MacMillan and Hartley Steward - be asked to recall those early days in a new Sun city? Bob Jelenic, the fourth man recruited for the job by Doug Creighton, is deceased.

Publisher Steward and editor-in-chief Pyette saw the Sun's newest tabloid to profitability before returning to the high-flying flagship Toronto Sun.

Calgary at 30 is a much different story than Calgary at 10 and 20, so chances are there will be little fanfare for the Big 3-0.

But at least the vets who saw the Calgary Sun through the 1980s and 1990s can applaud their efforts to make a difference.


  1. The 30th anniversary party was held last month in the loading dock. (Previous anniversary parties were relatively upscale events, held at a hotel.) Apparently the 30th anniverary party was held in lieu of the annual Stampede party, a great mid-summer bash for staff which has fallen under Quebecor's axe. .

  2. Just a small correction. The Albertan was not a business tabloid but a lively general-news daily broadsheet that, at its best, could give the larger Herald a run for its money. When Max Bell bought the paper in 1943, it was $500,000 in debt, but he restored it to profitability and made it the nucleus of the FP Publications chain, which eventually included the Ottawa Journal and The Globe and Mail. By the mid-1960s, more Canadians read FP papers than any other. The chain was sold to the Thomson Corporation in 1980. The same year, Toronto Sun Publishing picked up the Albertan for $1.3 million and converted it into its third daily tabloid.