Become a Member

nco_logoCan you believe it? We've been doing this for almost 15 years! Long before blogging and digital cameras and chat rooms and wi-fi were part of our everyday vocabulary, a small group of local residents were exploring the new online world.

Northfield Citizens Online (NCO) was started in December of 1991 and has evolved over the years into two main platforms: the Northfield.org site and the ISSUES discussion list. NCO is a non-profit (501c3) organization whose overall goal is to strengthen the sense of community in the greater Northfield area.

We have dubbed 2006 our Year of Change. We've reached out to people and organizations to create a broader, more vibrant, more exciting site. We've revamped the technology to make the site look and work better. We've given you one place to check out everything in town, with new items every day. We've received national and international recognition as pioneers in online community journalism. And we have more features, more contests and more fun planned.

That's amazing for a non-profit site run by a handful of your neighbors and friends volunteering their time. And that's why we had to add a part-time paid position to help keep up with our growth.

But we need your help to continue. That's why we're launching our first membership drive.  NCO’s immediate goal is to sign up 500 members who are willing to make a financial contribution of at least $20 each. We have arranged for your contribution to be matched dollar for dollar by several local businesses and instutions. It's a great way to make your contribution go twice as far.

Why a membership drive? We feel there are several strategic objectives to having financially supportive members. First, we can provide a stable revenue stream that can be used to make continual improvements to the Northfield.org site and implement NCO’s mission. Second, it will compel NCO to do outreach and other activities designed to expand the number of people in the community using the Northfield.org site and the ISSUES discussion list. Third, it will help increase content because we believe financially supportive members are more likely to contribute stories to the Northfield.org site and participate in the ISSUES list.

Please take two minutes and become a member now by going to the New Member page. By becoming a member, you are helping us achieve our mission, and we would like to thank you for your support. If you'd like to donate more than $20, we'd be thrilled, of course.

And if you join now, you can call yourself a charter member. And one day you can tell your grandkids—who will be getting Northfield.org through screens embedded in the paint of their living room walls—that you remember the good old days of desktop monitors and dial-up connections. And you'll all have a good laugh.

Editor's note: Jonathan Jaranson is the chair of the NCO Membership Committee.