The media company, which covers national news with short, punchy articles, has launched more than a dozen daily city and regional newsletters. One spotlighting the D.C. region debuted this week.
The new venture, Axios Local, aims to “help readers get smarter, faster about their hometowns.”
Following the acquisition of a local news publication in Charlotte, Axios launched six newsletters earlier this year, from Denver to northwest Arkansas. By the end of October, Axios Local will have eight more locally-focused newsletters, including D.C.’s.
Publisher Nick Johnston tells ARLnow that Axios distinguishes itself from other local news outlets by applying its well-known smart brevity style to individual cities and regions.
“We call it ‘smart, lifestyle reporting,’ where you get a lot of hard, scoopy news but you are also writing about the community,” says Johnston. “People care about museums that are opening or cool places to eat or what’s happening with festivals [over] the weekend. Can you combine all of that with a little bit of a local voice? Would readers respond to that? So far, the early response has been great.”
Axios aims to cover a mix of bigger cities, smaller cities, and college towns, he says. The nation’s capital was a natural choice because of its size, audience and endless supply of topics — not to mention the fact that it’s Axios’ home turf.
“D.C. is a big, awesome, dynamic city with a great market,” Johnston says. “Also, an audience that knows us a lot from our political reporting.”
The key is to hire great, in-the-know journalists, notes Johnston.
Axios D.C. is written by Chelsea Cirruzzo, Cuneyt Dil and Paige Hopkins. Both Cirruzzo and Dil have plenty of local bonafides, with Hopkins coming from Charlotte, where the already-popular Charlotte Agenda was rebranded Axios Charlotte after being acquired for a reported $5 million.
The D.C. newsletter will cover the District as well as Arlington, Alexandria and neighboring Maryland counties. Dil tells ARLnow that the newsletter’s goal is to cover the regional conversations that folks are having, not necessarily every city council or county board meeting.
“That [can] be about housing, transportation — Metro is always a regional story,” he said. “Everyone’s interested in what’s going on in terms of lifestyle, food and entertainment-wise in D.C.”
The pandemic revealed the importance of a regional focus, Dil notes, since COVID-19 crosses borders and the impact of policies extends beyond individual jurisdictions. Arlington’s Amazon-fueled redevelopment boom is a prime example of that, he said.
“There’s now Amazon and redevelopment everywhere. It’s part of this massive regional story of the whole area changing right before our eyes. We want to cover that,” says Dil.
Amazon, it should be noted, is Axios D.C.’s first advertiser.
First week of the new Axios DC newsletter (which I’ve generally enjoyed reading!) and the Amazon HQ2 ads keep on coming…
There’s something to say about target demographics here, I think. pic.twitter.com/0fI7pfwjD5
— Teo Armus (@teoarmus) September 24, 2021
Dil and Johnston say the region’s size, with two states, one city and a number of localities, does present a challenge.
“It’s been fascinating to get a sense of how you pick and choose,” says Johnston. “There’s just so much happening. And, also, how do you cover it in a comprehensive way?”
He said a recent story about vaccine mandates for public employees struck this balance, explaining D.C.’s mandate and ticking off mandates in other jurisdictions.
In terms of operations, many Axios employees still work from home, but Johnston says the Clarendon office at 3100 Clarendon Blvd remains the company’s “central hub.”
After this fall, Johnston says staff will focus on getting a better sense of what appeals to readers and how the business works in various local markets. The current plan is to launch newsletters in a dozen more cities in 2022.
The growth comes as Axios shakes off failed talks of merging with The Athletic or being acquired by German publishing company Axel Springer. The latter ended up buying Rosslyn-based Politico, from which the Axios founders split when founding their company in 2017.
Still independent and newly-invigorated by its foray into local, Axios recently announced a number of promotions, including moving Johnston to the newly-created publisher role, after he previously served as Editor in Chief. He will oversee both the local news operation and “Axios Pro,” a new subscription service.
“I’m super excited about just continuing to grow as fast as we can,” Johnston said.
In loving memory of Joseph Robert Kapacziewski, who passed away in 2023 at the age of 41.
In loving memory of James Stuart Edmonds, who passed away in 2023 at the age of 84.
A man was shot in front of a lounge on Columbia Pike early this morning, continuing a string of violent incidents.
Good Friday evening, Arlington. Today we published articles that were read a total of 17124 times… so far. 📈 Top stories The following are the most-read articles for today —…
YULA’s ultimate frisbee spring season is now open for registration. We offer programs for middle and high schoolers – open to all players, whether they are new or have previous experience.Middle SchoolIn the Middle School league, mixed-gender teams practice once during the week and have games on Sunday afternoons. Spring league is a fun, safe, and positive environment. The season begins mid-March and wraps up with a tournament in early June. There are several options for practice days, so we can often work around schedule conflicts with other sports & activities.High SchoolThe High School program is organized by school of attendance and teams are classified by gender. New players will learn the basics in a supportive, welcoming environment. Experienced players will continue to develop their skills, and enjoy competition with other high school programs. The season concludes with a state level championship tournament in late May.All players are guided by experienced coaches who emphasize sportsmanship and good spirit. Ultimate is a fun sport with great camaraderie!YULA does not want finances to limit anyone from participating. Our middle school program offers a “Pay What You Can” cost structure and our our high school program is offering a $50 discount to new players.Visit our website to register and learn more. Sign up with a friend, but don’t delay, the season starts in March!http://www.yula-ulti.org
The Arlington-Aachen High School exchange is returning this summer and currently accepting applicants.
The sister-city partnership started in 1993 by the Arlington Sister Cities Association, which seeks to promote Arlington’s international profile through a variety of exchanges in education, commerce, culture and the arts. The exchange, scheduled June 17th to July 4th, includes a two-week homestay in Aachen plus three days in Berlin. Knowledge of the German language is not required for the trip.
Former participants have this to say:
_”The Aachen exchange was an eye-opening experience where I was fully immersed in the life of a German student. I loved biking through the countryside to Belgium, having gelato and picnics in the town square, and hanging out with my German host student’s friends. My first time out of the country, the Aachen exchange taught me to keep an open mind, because you never know what could be a life changing experience.” – Kelly M._
Valentine gifts for someone special or for yourself are here at George Mason University from noon -4pm on February 14, 2023. Satisfy your sweet tooth with Kingsbury Chocolates, find a handmade bag from Karina Gaull, pick up treats from Village