Back in July 1986, when I started the Sneak Preview, I modeled it after a free, alternative newspaper in Denver called Westword. I had been dividing my time between Denver and Grants Pass since 1976 and felt it was time to settle down and do something productive. Back in the day, Westword had an annual readers' survey, "The Best of Denver," that was extremely popular, and in September 1987, I decided to introduce the concept to the Rogue Valley. It was a big hit, and today our sister publications, the Ashland and Medford Sneak Previews, and the Talent News & Review, also include readers' surveys.
The concept is so popular that I have counted four other publications in the valley that have attempted the same thing. I'm not complaining, mind you. Since I borrowed the idea from Westword, it's not like I had a patent on it. I do take comfort in the fact that we were the first, the trendsetters, and all the other publications are mere copycats (smiley face).