Casper Hanson is ready to start delivering The Brainerd Dispatch in the morning.
After almost five years of delivering the newspaper in the afternoons on Pine and Oak streets and 19th Street Southeast, Hanson, a 15-year-old Franklin Junior High School student, is one of few youth carriers who will be making the switch to delivering in the mornings.
So instead of starting about 3:50 p.m. every day except Saturdays and Sundays, starting Monday Hanson will have his route finished by 6 a.m.
"I'm ready. It won't be a problem," said Hanson as he walked his route. "I will prefer it. I'm actually glad. Really glad."
Casper Hanson put The Dispatch into the blue paper tube of a customer on Pine Street. Casper, whose paper route covers Pine and Oak streets, and Southeast 19th Street, delivers The Dispatch every day to 46 homes. It takes him about a half-hour to make his deliveries.
Hanson said it takes him about a half-hour to deliver to 46 Dispatch customers. Delivering the Sunday Dispatch takes him about 45 minutes.
"There's more of a paper there," said Hanson.
And on a few occasions, it's taken him a little longer and proven to be a more dangerous job than one might think, such as the time a dog attacked him. Hanson wasn't bit, though. The dog buried its teeth into his newspaper bag.
"Otherwise he would bite right into my leg," said Hanson. A man with a pitch fork removed the dog from Hanson. Other than that incident -- and a few other dog chases -- Hanson said his route is pretty quiet.
For the past 4-1/2 years Hanson started his newspaper route every day about 3:50 p.m. With The Dispatch switching to a morning paper Monday, Hanson will have to get the paper out by 6 a.m. every day. Hanson said he doesn't mind, and in fact prefers delivering the paper in the morning.
He said delivering the newspaper in the mornings will allow him to do more after school. No matter the weather, Hanson said he delivers the paper on foot or riding a bike.
Hanson said of Dispatch customers he's talked to, most comments about the switch to a morning paper have been positive.
"They've said, 'Yeah, that's cool.'"
Casper's brother, Ernie, also is a youth carrier for The Dispatch. Between the two brothers 88 newspapers get delivered each day.
Hanson pulled The Dispatch out of his carrier bag for delivery to another customer. No matter the weather, Hanson and his brother Ernie, who also delivers The Dispatch, either walk or ride a bike when delivering the newspaper.
Kay Churchill, the Hansons' district manager at The Dispatch, said of the 22 youth carriers in her district only three have decided to make the move to mornings. She said adults will pick up the rest of the routes.
Churchill said she has enjoyed Hanson as a carrier.
"If I ever needed a backup, he was always there for me," said Churchill.
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