Editor’s Notebook, Regulars and Shorts

Editor’s Notebook: Is CATALYST Still Relevant?

By Greta Belanger deJong

Comments from our readers on the advent of our 30th year: Why you love CATALYST (and why we love you!).
by Greta Belanger deJong

I asked you earlier this year. CATALYST turned 30. I had a birthday of epic proportions, myself. I wanted to know: Do you still care?

You do. You sent me notes as to how CATALYST has impacted your life. Your CAT moments. The connections you’ve made.

I am touched beyond words. So I’ll let you have your say. Thank you for the votes of confidence. You guys make it all worthwhile.




I can’t think about Salt Lake without thinking about Catalyst. You make a monthly road map for all of us struggling on the path to find meaning, connection, and purpose in a world where our best and brightest are hired away by corporations to conspire to make us feel poor, disconnected and adrift (and then promise temporary solace through consumption).

Your body of work has made the world a demonstrably better place. You have made a life worth having lived. You make even the disaster of divorce into an adventure of discovery and enlightenment. When I think of you, I am happy. I can’t believe you are 60. I can’t wait to meet you when you’re 80. Love, respect, and gratitude.
Tom Price


Catalyst is where I go to get opinions and facts that I am not likely to find in the SL Tribune or the Deseret News. Lets be honest, I am going to learn things about nuclear fall out, peace demonstrations, threats to our deserts and canyons from you that the other local papers just aren’t going to offer. On top of the important news you are my “go to” source for anything I need. My massage therapist moved to North Carolina, no problem; I will look in the Catalyst and find someone new. I need a gardener that is sensitive to my feelings about rocks, plants, bugs and nature. Where else am I going to find them but in the Catalyst?
I know 30 years is a long time to do something but please keep Catalyst going. I need you and most importantly the community needs you. You fill a need and a place with us that no other organization else does.
Marga Ayers

You are a powerhouse of community-building creativity! And it’s so very inspiring to see you carry forward, spanning decades, getting only more effective, more resourceful, more inspired, more young & sexy all the while!
Matt Stella

Happy New Year – and congratulations on your recent milestones in both life and journalism.
Through a bizarre chain of events that led me from local business, to teaching, to the world of nonprofit, I’ve been fortunate to really dig in to my community over the last 5 years. But when I think of all the things I love here in Salt Lake City—and all the exciting progress and change of recent years—I can’t help but feel extremely grateful to people like you and the many by your side there at Catalyst over the years that have helped lay the framework to make all of this possible. We are fortunate to have such a great community—rich in culture, ideas, and support—and fortunate to have the people and alternative media available to connect it all together.
Congratulations on 30, 60­—and the positive ripple effect you’ve helped create.
Matt Monson (Vestpocket Coalition)

Can it really be 30 years?!! I remember when I thought trusting anyone over 30 was suspect. Amazing how fast I got to 30 and had to re-examine that one. It is really a testament to your vision that Catalyst has reached maturity while continuing to remain fresh and astonishing.
Thank you for so freely sharing your passion, vision and irrepressible spirit with this community and for making a difference in my life.
Carlie Jimenez

The quote from Bill Moyer “the need for voices of reason, simple and eloquent, has rarely been stronger” pretty much says it all for me as to why the Catalyst is still the most needed magazine in our community. It is needed & it is fun, too, with all the varied articles it provides every month year after year. Wishes for many more years to come.
Georgia Clark

Catalyst has been a source of knowledge and inspiration for me since I moved to SLC in 1994. I have not always agreed with positions presented in some articles, but I became better-informed for having read them. I travel a fair bit, and I don’t know of a better journal of its type in North America.
Grant Hogarth

Catalyst has been my link to the only diverse cultural center, SLC, in the state. My wife and I live out in the far reaches of Zion; Kanab, Utah. I’ve attended many talks, events in SLC that I wouldn’t have known about save the Catalyst. Thanks, for gifting us and that gift I’ve brought with me to the desert.
Tom Carter

Catalyst CONGRATULATIONS and THANK YOU! You were the major force in bringing the healing community out of the closet. You anchor us, connect us, and let people know how rich our town is in excellent healing resources. There are many, many people that are in my life because of you.
Carol Lessinger, Feldenkrais practitioner

CATALYST has been a treasure trove of possibilities for me: I took classes with Mary Nickle; had many readings from Suzanne Wagner; became a massage therapist; became a “ground breaking” member of Wasatch Cohousing, where I met my husband. Plus all the years of educational articles and much much more.
When I moved to Maui, my daughters would mail me each month’s copy. Even now, since I moved to So. Calif. to care for my mom, I still love to have a hard copy to read, share,and refer to!
Judy (Barney) Anderson

The Catalyst Magazine has co-created a more thoughtful and aware community in the last 30 years! Thank you Greta for the last 15 years of supporting the evolution of our business!”
Brandt Ian, Sage’s/Vertical Diner/Supernatural/Cali’s Market

My catalyst moment? Reading the goji berry article and finding out about the likely origin of my goji bushes—Chinese immigrants! It prompted me to share the plants with friends to help spread the love.
Reading Catalyst makes me feel at home, like I do belong here in SLC. <3
Jodi Mardesich

I love you and Catalyst. I have been around for the 30 years and know that you stay in the moment of all the days. Stay well you and the Catalyst Crew. Best Wishes for the Birthday!
Jude Rubadue (Avenues Fruitshare.org, Slow Food Utah Board Member, SLC Food Policy Task Force, Skier and Eater, Exec. Chef, General Manager Watson Shelter at Alta)

The contents of each issue often validate what I am thinking about or present a contrary view that gives me the opportunity to reconsider my position. There is always so much valuable information in Catalyst, that I look forward every month to picking it up. I’m going to call it a friend along the path.
Jeanie Shipley

When first moving to this state 30 years ago from California and Washigton, Catalyst was one of the few things that made me feel like I had some sort of a connection here. Thanks for helping me fall in love with the place where I live.
Bonnie Zinanti

Congratulations to Catalyst for making living in SLC and Utah more interesting, more engaging, and more fun. What you have done in this market is amazing in so many ways. Catalyst is still relevant, maybe more now than ever. What a coincidence that we are celebrating your 30th in 2012. Looking forward to it.
Steve Defa

My husband Dewey and I send you best wishes for continued success with Catalyst. You have enriched our lives and given us a feeling of being connected to the diversity and beauty of the Salt Lake City area. We delight in showing the magazine to our friends in South Carolina who think that SLC is backwards. HaHaHa!!!!!
Lots of power between the Catalyst covers! We’ve had many good and inspiring experiences, brought to us courtesy of you and Catalyst.
Despina Yeargin

Wow, how time flows by. I remember just relocating to Salt Lake City from New Mexico and Catalyst was my Oasis!!
You have given much to many in Salt Lake through Catalyst and I am sure will continue to touch others lives no matter which direction you may find yourself turning. Much love and respect.
Denise Cerreta

I was fortunate to be part of the beginnings of Catalyst. I am so pleased to watch it blossom and succeed to fill in the hole that existed in the newspaper industry back 30 years ago and still exists.
Pam Blackwell Mayes

Just picked up the new issue yesterday and enjoyed both of your articles in this month’s Cat. I was quite taken with your mission of founding principles written so long ago when we were once young. I think you’ve done an admirable job of adapting, evolving, and progressing within the context of these lofty notions. Kudos to you.
Tomas Johnson

I have had magical experiences and syncronisities due to the advertising in your magazine. I also thoroughly enjoy the articles and as well as appreciate your intensions to be a conscious magazine. There are other alternative publications that I often pick up. Energetically, Catalyst has a pure feeling that is palpable.
Christina Mcpherson

CONGRATULATIONS Miss Greta. Thanks for all you have done and all you do. Everyone loves you.
Borg Sue

Catalyst….it actually is a mainstay in my home. If I need something to read, I pick up my Catalyst. If I need something to do, I pick up my Catalyst. I am on vacation this week, and what is on the top of my nightstand…Catalyst! You Rock!
Ronda Landa, IID, ICON DESIGN, Inc

Dear Greta,
The Catalyst has connected me to the healing / metaphysical community of the Watsatch front for many years. The ads that we have placed have returned 10 fold what they have cost over the years, so has been a good sound investment in our community dealings. Our Psychic fairs have panned out for the best, and people keep coming back for more. Thank you for your continued dedication.
Nicholas Stark

I only knew of two worlds in Utah; by the time your mag came out, I had already been here for 8 years or so. Those worlds were Them and Us; Us consisting of all of the artists and musicians and mime-ists (SL Mime troupe) and the Sun Bar and belly dancers and street buskers (displaced people like me and caricature artists (i.e., Carel Brest van Kempen), Mama Eddy’s and the Blue Mouse (and KRCL) and Tape Head Company and the Red Apple and The Pub and Safeway, not to mention the Fisherman in the basement of that Catholic Church by the U, and Big Ed’s and Gepetto’s and the Corkroom at the U. And then there was everybody else, i.e., the Establishment, Zion’s Bank, the police, THE Church and all of the other imbedded power players. And here comes this squeaky little voice in the middle of this political, social stare down of opposites proposing that it is indeed a common planet and that maybe we could share the beautiful things and somehow make a difference. What kind of nut job would get in the middle of a social revolution (or at least the remnants of one)? Thank you Greta and John and the hundred other contributors over the years that DID make a difference.
Andy Monaco

I found Catalyst at the Greek Soulvaki the night I moved to SLC from Flagstaff, in 1998, and read it that night. With it I knew that I could make Salt Lake City my home and that contrary to popular belief, Salt Lake City also has a vibrant lifestyle and even a metaphysical core. I have been hooked ever since. I feel at home in its pages and never cease to learn something new.
Andrew Stone, Programer, Lifelong Learning
University of Utah Coninuing Education

This article was originally published on November 30, 2012.