CHAMPION‚ÄĒMay 27, 2016
¬†¬†¬† ¬†¬†¬† The wet weather pattern in Champion is good for the aquifer and good for the garden.¬† Some remember the overabundant rain of last year to which they attributed the tomato blight.¬† Others had good luck in the garden all around.¬† Things have started out nicely this year and while Champions are grateful for their own good fortune, they do not forget the suffering of those elsewhere who have been experiencing destructive hail, high winds and tornadoes.¬† The anniversary of the Joplin tornado brought pictures of the devastation and of the recovery five years on.¬† It is a tribute to resilience.
¬†¬†¬† ¬†¬†¬† The Missouri Department of Conservation says that the American black bear is one of the largest and heaviest wild mammals in Missouri.¬† ‚ÄúBlack bears are an exciting part of Missouri‚Äôs history and they are making a comeback in the southern part of the state.‚ÄĚ¬† There is a lot of good information on the Department of Conservation website http://on.mo.gov/1VefbDI.¬† They suggest that if you encounter a bear up close to be sure the bear has an escape route‚ÄĒnever corner a bear.¬† Back away slowly with your arms raised.¬† Speak in a calm, loud voice.¬† Do not turn your back to the bear.¬† Walk away slowly.¬† They emphasize not to run.¬† Dairy farmers in Near Champion West have sighted bears off and on over the years, as have folks up off of C Highway.¬† Last week Brushyknob neighbors reported that their bear was back.¬† ‚ÄúHe tore down the empty bird feeder and opened our metal trash can and tore out the empty folded bird seed bags and strung them out.‚ÄĚ¬† Three days later, ‚ÄĚJust a little way in front of the house in the woods there stood this big black bear!¬† He just kept looking and didn‚Äôt leave.¬† He didn‚Äôt even care that the dog was barking.‚ÄĚ¬† Finally the neighbor fired a couple of gunshots over its head and it took off.¬† ‚ÄúHopefully he‚Äôll be afraid to come back.¬† There is no food for him.¬† The conservation guy said to be really careful next couple of weeks because they‚Äôre out of hibernation and hungry and there is not much food in the wild.‚ÄĚ¬† Some selected logging has been down on their road by the creek, so the territory is getting smaller.¬† Send your bear stories to The Champion News, Rt. 72 Box 367, Norwood, MO 65717 or to firstname.lastname@example.org.
¬†¬†¬† ¬†¬†¬† In other wildlife news, it turns out that the opossum attracts ticks, as do any number of other mammals, but the opossum will kill more than 95% of those that find him.¬† They say that an opossum will vacuum up and kill as many as 4,000 ticks a week.¬† Some hillbilly entrepreneur could surely find a way to capitalize on this attribute.¬† Ticks are out already in legion.¬† When music lovers see that stuffed ‚Äėpossum below the bridge on Sherry Bennet‚Äôs big stand-up bass fiddle, they will think more kindly of it.¬† Sherry sings, ‚ÄúFive Pounds of Possum in My Headlights Tonight‚ÄĚ to bring a lot of fun to the bluegrass jams around the area.¬† She has been absent from them lately and her friends are looking forward to seeing her out and about soon.¬† She has a beautiful voice and one of those smiles that light up the day.
¬†¬†¬† ¬†¬†¬† The internet has been full of pictures of the East Fairview School students, grades 1-8, from the 1950-1951 school year.¬† Some of those fresh looking, adorable faces are identified as Ken and Wayne Coats, Pete Proctor, David Coonts, and Jerry Wagner.¬† Sherri Tate Unger said that she had spotted Baxter and Sharon in the picture.¬† Olin Parks said, ‚ÄúI don‚Äôt see any halos on these youngsters.‚ÄĚ¬† The posting of these pictures and others are designed to bring attention to the Denlow/Fairview School Reunion which takes place on Saturday of the Memorial Day week-end.¬† The blow by blow description of this year‚Äôs fine affair will appear in next week‚Äôs edition of The Champion News.¬† Meanwhile look in the May archives at www.championnews.us going back for the last nine years for highlights of reunions past.¬† There are pictures that will make you smile.¬† Some favorite folks will be absent this year, among them Pete and Bonnie Mullins and Cathie Alsup Reilly.¬† They have reasons that they cannot make it this time and have sights on next year for sure.¬† If history is any judge, this one will be just right.
¬†¬†¬† ¬†¬†¬† John Wayne‚Äôs birthday was May 26th.¬† He was The Ringo Kid in John Ford‚Äôs film ‚ÄúStagecoach‚ÄĚ in 1939.¬† He was a good looking young man.¬† Cinnamon Spence is a good looking young woman sharing a birthday with The Duke.¬† The 27th is the anniversary of Edgar Henson‚Äôs birth.¬† What a sterling fellow he was!¬† He was well known for his humor and friendly personality, but he was also a good businessman (with Anna‚Äôs help) and a good neighbor.¬† On a tour of The Historic Emporium in Downtown Champion a person can see any number of photographs of him and other mementos of his time as the hub of the community.
¬†¬†¬† ¬†¬†¬† It is wonderful to see Republicans and Democrats getting along.¬† In a move that completely shocked Republicans and Democrats alike, John McCain has come out publicly to sing the praises of Senator Bernie Sanders.¬† He was speaking on camera to the Veteran‚Äôs Affairs Committee when he made the shocking revelation and could not resist mentioning who else had a hand in making the new VA bill come to fruition.¬† ‚ÄúI want to thank you, and I would like to mention that it was the product of the negotiations with Senator Sanders who was then chairman of the committee, and I would allege that I‚Äôm one of the first to feel the Bern.‚ÄĚ¬† Politico says, ‚ÄúThe agreement struck between Sanders, an independent from Vermont who chairs the Senate Veterans‚Äô Affairs Committee, and McCain, a Republican from Arizona, could salvage VA reform in the Senate.¬† The two senators began negotiations after it looked as though VA reform might become another victim of the chamber‚Äôs gridlock with the competing Democratic and Republican bills‚ÄĒwhich would have been an embarrassing failure for both parties amid the national attention focused on the VA‚Äôs troubles.‚ÄĚ¬† Come down to the wide, wild, wooly banks of Auld Fox Creek to witness Republicans and Democrats getting along in Champion!¬† Looking on the Bright Side!