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If you want to know when a woman gets bit by a rabid raccoon, look no further than the front page of West Of, the free community newspaper of West Ashley. Whether it’s news about road closings, school events, church services, or what beer goes best with jerk chicken wings at Gene’s Haufbrau, West Of is the news source for the Holy City’s West Side. Publisher Lorne Chambers, a former City Paper staffer, started the weekly paper three years ago after discovering that other neighborhoods had community newspapers but not West Ashley and its 60,000 residents. Business was slow at first, but now Chambers says the future is bright, noting that last year saw 28 percent growth in revenue and a new initiative to distribute to every driveway in the area. “When a lady gets bitten by a raccoon, that’s community news gold,” Chambers says.
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