To continue our tradition of finding interesting people in the Reston Community, we bring you Joey Kamide who has just founded Northern Virginia’s first online magazine about local baseball.
Joey Kamide, a Reston native, has nearly two decades of experience in the local sports media field, and is in his 10th season as a high school baseball coach in Northern Virginia. He attended nearby Herndon High School and George Mason University, serving as the sports editor for both school’s newspapers before moving on to work with The Observer Newspapers, Times Community Newspapers, and The Connection Newspapers. He has won several Virginia Press Association awards as a sports editor and reporter. Most recently, Kamide has served as a freelance sports writer for the Washington, D.C., bureau of The Associated Press.
Joey has international coaching experience as well. In 2011 he coached with the Hungarian National Baseball & Softball Federation, and in 2012 served as the head coach of the Tempo Titans Praha in the Czech Republic. There he lead the club to a Division II national championship and promotion to the first division, known as the Extraliga.
Currently, he is in his third season as an assistant coach at Oakton High School. Also locally, he has held assistant coaching roles at James Madison High School and Centreville High School.
All of this knowledge came together in a perfect storm and NOVA Baseball Magazine was born this year. Joey was gracious enough to answer some of our questions about his new venture.
1. In a nutshell, tell us about NOVA Baseball Magazine and who the audience is.
The magazine will cover youth, travel, high school and college baseball in Northern Virginia; Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun and Prince William counties. We will have the web site that will be updated daily with free and premium content, a weekly e-notebook and digital magazine available to subscribers, and annual preseason and postseason high school media guides. It’s really the only of it’s kind, and I’m excited at the potential for it to take off as word spreads through our baseball community.
2. What inspired you to start this magazine?
There is a lack of comprehensive coverage in our area of high school sports, in particular of baseball. The Post does some and the local papers do some, but during the spring they also have to cover sports like lacrosse, soccer and softball. And with budgets being so low for staffing in print media, reporters and editors are just spread too thin to be able to do a real good job of focusing on covering one of those sports. This is combining my two passions – sports media and baseball – so for me, it really doesn’t get any better than this.
3. What sort of content will you be featuring?
The premium content on the web site, which will also run in the digital magazine, will be features on players, coaches and teams in the coverage area. We’ll also have a feature called ‘Catching Up‘ where we connect with a player from the area who is or was in pro ball, and we’ll have a column written by a local coach called ‘In the Dugout‘, where they write about a certain aspect of the game.
I’ll also be writing a column on a current event or issue related to the game in our area, and the plan moving forward is to partner with the Nationals to have a player or coach write a monthly column about their experiences in the game, and to launch a weekly video podcast and ‘Game of the Week’ broadcast.
On a daily basis, we’ll have a team of interns who will be updating schedules, scores, standings and writing brief game summaries during the high school season, and we have an ‘Around the Diamond’ notebook that will be updated multiple times a week.
4. Who are the contributors and have you partnered with anyone?
Well, right now it’s essentially a one-man show, but I’m hoping to grow a freelance staff of photographers and writers, and we’ll have the internship program as well. I want to build a solid business structure and credible editorial foundation before I look to expand the staff or any other overhead too much. It’s really a case of, “Let’s learn to walk properly before we try and run. Or else we’ll just fall flat on our face.”
I’ve partnered with GameOn Mobile, which is based out of Canada, to host our standings and scores platform, and have spoken with a couple national web sites about potentially partnering up to provide them with content and extend the reach of that content.
5. What is your goal for the magazine as it grows and evolves?
I feel like I’ve got a pretty realistic monetary goal with the subscriptions and advertisements I hope to sell for it. Editorially, I’d really like for it to be exactly what the slogan says, ‘Your Source for Baseball News in Northern Virginia.’ Between the dozens of youth organizations and travel team programs, and the over 60 high schools in the coverage area, there are literally thousands of baseball folks in the baseball community in Northern Virginia. Once I get the word out to them, and once they check it out, I have no doubt that this will take off and be everything I have hoped it would be.
6. Is there anything else you’d like our readers to know?
This is just one entity of the small media company I have, which also produces media guides as a fundraising program for high school teams. The next step is children’s sports books, which could take what I’m doing to a whole different level. The entrepreneur in me keeps telling myself that in time this magazine and the media guides can be my livelihood, and the children’s books could be my retirement. I’m 36 years old now, it’s time to start taking some of these dreams and ideas I’ve always had, and making them a reality. This magazine is the first step towards that reality.
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