On June 1st of 2013, Place to Be Nation was launched. First born out of the idea of being a website to support the Place to Be Podcast, the entire scope and mission of the site literally changed overnight and no one could have imagined then what things would be like seven months later. We first made a modest promise of new material every day; 1,050 pieces later, I can confidently say we far exceeded our wildest May expectations. The staff at Place to Be Nation is as talented and dedicated as anyone could ask for. It’s easy to quit things on the internet but our core team only got stronger and more creative as the year went on. Without their passion we wouldn’t be what we are today – a growing, popular destination website with a diverse cornucopia of articles and podcasts. And for as successful as 2013 was, we have some huge plans in the works to make 2014 even better.
As I reflect back on 2013, I wanted to share a PTBN guidebook of sorts. This is not a “Best Of” list as we have too many great pieces to list and I’d be remiss if anyone was overlooked. Rather than that, the below is a look at some of our accomplishments and also a sample of the great material you can find at Place to Be Nation. I hope you’ll take the time to read something you may have missed along the way, or check out a show you’ve been meaning to listen to. We can’t thank you enough for helping build Place to Be Nation into what it is today.
– Every month the very talented Ben Morse helps organize The Five Count, where members of our staff take the topical question of the month and share their top five list. Ben tabulates the responses at the end for a general PTBN consensus.
– We preview and live blog every WWE pay-per-view and we even broke out a special blog for TNA’s Bound for Glory show. Check out the work Justin, Scott, Chad and myself (with other cameos) did covering the Payback and SummerSlam shows from this past year.
– We’ve had pieces make the Wrestling Observer’s daily update – like Chad’s reflection on Jackie Fargo’s passing and Andrew’s look at Mid-South Wrestling in advance of the popular DVD release.
– We have you covered when a big event is happening, like Chris Hero’s release, a wellness suspension or the recent WWE Unification Match. We can also have a little fun or be a little nostalgic with our wrestling.
– Scott Keith joined the Place to Be Podcast for two episodes and also contributes articles as well as his weekly NXT recap.
– We have regular columns like The High Spot, The Wrestler Snapshot, JR’s Treasure Trove and Justin and Scott’s Vintage Vault reviews.
– We cover each weekly wrestling show, with Scott Criscuolo’s Raw recap being available to read with your Tuesday morning coffee. These include Ring of Honor, Impact Wrestling, Smackdown and all the way down to your Superstars and Main Event shows.
Sports and MMA
– Callum’s interview with fighter Tim Kennedy made ESPN. Yes, in our first month we had a link in an ESPN article that mentioned the GrappleTalk podcast and Place to Be Nation. It was crazy.
– Callum was a credentialed writer at a recent UFC event in England, representing PTBN. We have the badge pictures and everything. An unbelievable opportunity for Callum and something we’re real proud to have made happen. Callum and Roger cover all the UFC events, including their big cards on Fox Sports One.
– Our NBA coverage from Andrew Riche started back in June and barely took the summer off. Please click on his name to see all his great hoops features (I could list out ten here). He and our team are also providing regular updates of the NBA and College Hoops seasons. Justin regularly attends Providence Friars games.
– Our college football team is re-booking every BCS title game using the go-forward four team playoff. We also previewed the big slates at the end of the year, as well as had conference previews back in August.
– Our staff compiled weekly NFL power rankings this year. We also previewed every NFL team prior to the season
– We also have regular columns on baseball and hockey throughout their respective seasons.
– We have phenomenal comics collaborations from an extremely talented staff. Check out their 2013 year in review.
– Regular columns like the Hard-Traveling Fanboys, Weber has Issues, Sellers’ Points and New Hotness – a weekly look at upcoming releases.
– We miss the 90s and Jen and Justin write about it regularly (with a run-in by Ben now and then).
– Ben and Jen cover the Wrestling/Pop Culture crossover of the year with Total Divas Watching Total Divas.
– Jen will touch on recent celebrity news, like this bit on Taylor Swift. Justin covered the premier event in hot dog eating contests with this running blog.
– We have regular columns looking at horror movies and man-movies.
– Parv penned our most popular article to date – a lengthy look at Bob Dylan’s entire discography.
– Adam is taking you around the world with a look at the best music from different countries.
– Our gaming team hits on everything from console launches to the best games of the past generation.
– Jordan breaks down Survivor and 24 and will wildly entertain you with his look at some of the people you’ll meet in society.
– Our Life section sometimes spans topics that fall outside a specific pop culture genre. Kati sharing her personal story is one of our best pieces of the year.
– We have the best family of podcasts on the Internet. I can’t encourage you to check out our dedicated podcasts page enough. And it’s not just wrestling! Podcasts like GrappleTalk, the Kings of Sport and the pop-culture catch-all Richer and the Mailman are all immensely entertaining and worth listening to.