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The Star Tribune is shutting down City Pages

The free newspaper was bought by the Star Tribune in 2015.
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The Star Tribune is shutting down City Pages.

The news was broken by Star Tribune reporters, who said it had been confirmed in an internal memo that City Pages' print and online publications would cease publication effective Wednesday.

The alt-weekly newspaper debuted in the Twin Cities in 1979, and was bought by the Star Tribune in 2015.

It appointed its first woman editor, Emily Cassel, in January of this year. She tweeted the following:

Its closure comes amid major pressure on the media industry because of the COVID-19 pandemic, with several newspapers across Minnesota either shutting down or reducing their circulation as they dealt with the drop in ad revenue.

The Star Tribune reported it will result in 30 people losing their jobs, with the company saying it could no longer sustain the paper amid the continued downturn in the events and hospitality industry that was core to City Pages' coverage and advertising.

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“While City Pages has retained a strong brand in our market, the profound disruptions of the COVID-19 pandemic have made it economically unviable,” Mike Klingensmith, chief executive of Star Tribune Media, wrote to employees, per the newspaper.

It sometimes courted controversy for its left-leaning political coverage, earning an apology from its publisher earlier this month for an article regarding President Donald Trump's COVID-19 diagnosis.

But it is best known for being a popular and vital source for its coverage of the Twin Cities arts and music scene, and ran popular annual promotions including the City Pages "Best Of" guide.

Its last print edition will be published this week, the Strib says.

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