Now covering football; plus updates on new subscription options for 2019-20

8/27/2019 | Column | By Bryce Derouin

A round a year ago at this time, Upbeat had just finalized its name and logo. We were excited to bring the UP its first digital coverage of high school basketball and feature the passionate athletes and coaches with in-depth stories.

Now, we want to do the same for football. 

Starting this week, we will begin posting preseason stories from the schools we visited over the past two weeks. This includes how Ishpeming’s George Niemi and Kingsford’s Mark Novara plan to take over established programs from legendary coaches, an update on the status of Marcus Johnson’s foot, and of course, more from around the UP.

At launch, our plan is to focus on the 11-person game. With just myself and Eden working as full-time staffers for Upbeat, we want to commit our time and resources to one sport in hopes of delivering the best product possible.

We will also be debuting a new payment system that we hope will be more user-friendly. This will require you to register with a new account since we erased the data from last year in order to get a fresh start for 2019-20. You can use the same log-in info you previously used, but this time, it won’t be necessary to sign up for PayPal now in order to subscribe — a debit or credit card will work just fine. And we are going to give you more subscription options, including a one-year offer where a one-time payment is all you will need to access the website for the next year. This option will be $59.95, while the month-to-month option with the ability to renew will still exist and be $7.99 per month.

If you’re still on the fence about subscribing or wondering what we’re about, check out some of our past stories over the year:

We would also like to thank the coaches who sent us stats from their games when we were covering elsewhere. With their help, we’re able to publish enough roundups in to give better UP-wide coverage. We encourage football coaches to do the same this year; stats can be emailed or sent to us by taking a photo on your phone and texting it to us. If you send us the information, we’ll highlight it on our site.

We also are aware a subscription-based website founded and ran by two people is a new concept to the UP, so we figured we would be transparent with the costs of what it took to start Upbeat and what your money has gone towards paying off. This doesn’t include the expenses of over 20,000 miles of travel we put on from November through the end of March:

  • LLC and name reservation fees: $75
  • GoDaddy fees: $290.63
  • Website building cost: $4,500
  • Website maintenance costs: $5,200
  • Website design: $2,000
  • Camera #1: $2,999
  • Lens: $1,906.94
  • Camera accessories: $625.37
  • Camera #2, lens and accessories: $4,963.72
  • Headshots: $450
  • Sports writers association dues: $50
  • Jerseys/Shirts for advertising: $1,151.16
  • Harland Clarke Checks: $43.34
  • Facebook advertising: $200
  • Freelance photos: $204
  • Freelance photo editing: $800
  • Freelance writing: $200
  • Website auto renewal feature: $391.14
  • Hotel costs: $143.18
  • Subway: $10 (One time I forgot my personal debit card at home and I was hungry, so I used the Upbeat card.)

TOTAL: $26,203.48

With your support, Upbeat is possible. It’s a project run by passionate and thoughtful people who understand the importance of the UP’s prep sports, and we look forward to being there to tell more of those stories.

Bryce Derouin

Bryce is a co-founder of Upbeat. He earned his journalism degree from Grand Valley State and served as the sports editor for three years at the Daily Mining Gazette in Houghton after working one year as a sports reporter at the Daily Press in Escanaba.