The York Dispatch will publish mornings starting March 3.
The York Dispatch will publish mornings starting March 3. (Christina Kaufman/The York Dispatch)

Local readers soon will be able to have The York Dispatch with their morning coffee.

The publication, founded in 1876 as The Evening Dispatch, will become a morning paper on Monday, March 3.

From then on, copies of The York Dispatch will be available at newsstands by 6 a.m.

"The A.M. cycle has been the far-preferred cycle for decades. It will open new opportunities for the Dispatch to pick up some additional readers," said Editor Lori Goodlin.

The change will put The York Dispatch head to head with the York Daily Record.

The two papers have had a joint operating agreement since 1990, one of six such agreements left in the country. The agreement means the papers share business operations -- such as circulation and printing -- but maintain separate news operations and editorial voices.

"It will ramp up competition and be even more competitive than before. My people are up for it," Goodlin said.

York County has had an appetite for two newspapers for several decades, said Dispatch President and Publisher Dave Martens.

"Now we'll be on the streets a lot earlier," he said.

It's a change driven by finances, said Sara Glines, president of the York Newspaper Co., which controls business operations for The York Dispatch and York Daily Record. "It is expensive to deliver newspapers, especially when you have two newspapers and two separate distribution operations," she said.

Glines, who also serves as publisher of the York Daily Record, agreed the change will heighten competition between the two newspapers.

"That competition is a good thing for the community" because both staffs will be working to deliver the best news product, she said.

It's also an opportunity for the Dispatch to attract readers previously lost to its afternoon distribution, Glines said.

"I'll be very interested to see if there's growth in single copy sales and home delivery," she said.

Copies of the Dispatch will still be available in the afternoon, she said.

"If someone likes to pick up the Dispatch at 2 p.m., it will still be there at 2 p.m. We're going to have them there in the morning and make sure there are enough papers throughout the day," Glines said.

--Reach Candy Woodall at cwoodall@yorkdispatch.com.