On September 1, Customers looking in the seatback pocket in front of them across our combined Southwest and AirTran fleet found that the publication they’ve always known as a familiar part of their travel experience had a new name on the cover.
Spirit magazine, a title born from both a Company attribute, as well as an advertising campaign of its era, transitioned to Southwest: The Magazine. But for the first 13 years of our Company’s history, this periodical had a very similar name--simply Southwest Airlines Magazine.
The first issue of Southwest Airlines Magazine appears to have been produced shortly after our first flight on June 18, 1971. Within the magazine there is no exact publication date, but it does open with a story about Lamar Muse, our first President and Richard Elliott (first Marketing Vice President) watching one of the first revenue flights off on that famous Friday.
Following a run of ten issues, Southwest Airlines Magazine became a monthly publication in August 1972. The cover featured entertainers from AstroWorld’s Crystal Palace, a show they performed at least eight times a day at the popular Houston amusement park.
Spirit became the title of our inflight magazine in March 1985. Along with a new publisher, the name was changed to reflect the enthusiasm of our People and also supported a new series of television commercials featuring the catchy “There’s a certain Southwest Spirit” song written by Tim McMlure of longtime advertising agency GSD&M. It also grew significantly from the 16 pages of earlier years to nearly 160.
While the title of our inflight magazine may have changed over the years, the SOUTHWEST SPIRIT of our People has not.