September 26, 2011

September 26, 2011

CHAMPION‚ÄĒSeptember 26, 2011

          Champions are adept at being where they are.  It goes with the territory.  Moreover, Champions are not subject to news black-outs as is the case in New York City where thousands of people have been voicing their discontent with the economy and world politics for ten days.  During this time when 130 world leaders have been attending the United Nations’ General Assembly, these protesters vie for attention on the world stage, without much success, grumbling about greed and corruption within the governing bodies that make the decisions and determinations that affect the economy as a whole.  They reject the idea that 90% of the wealth should be in the hands of 1% of the population.  Meanwhile, over in Europe experiments in the big particle accelerator laboratory seem to be proving that some things (neutrinos?) really can travel faster than the speed of light!  Get out! Probably most Champions cannot fathom how this will shake up the whole world of physics.  Einstein’s insight in 1905 was that there was no fixed frame of reference for time and space and thus no absolute causality, no this-before-that, no preferential present moment.   So with total transparency and lack of rancor Champions maintain the regular calm pace of life in their own very present and tranquil environs and wish Mr. Einstein’s followers the ease of passing that comes from enlightenment.  You heard it first in Champion!

¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Champion friends and pioneers are getting ready to spend some time at the Edge of the World with their friends Dale and Betty Thomas as they host their wonderful Pioneer Descendants Gathering on the week end. There will be flint knapping, archery demonstrations, blacksmithing, soap making, molasses making, and apple butter. The horse drawn cycle mower is always a crowd pleaser and the wagon rides down along the Bryant are a chance to get lost in the mysterious past. Those buckskin people will be there as well as the Civil War reinactors and black-powder folks from Barren Forks. There will be lots of live music and great food to go along with Dale‚Äôs wheel-right demonstrations. Probably the Older Iron Club will have some interesting exhibitions and, hopefully, Bob Berry will have his beautiful Studebaker in the antique car show.¬† This is just the sort of thing that Royce Henson and Joe would enjoy seeing.¬† Maybe they will make it out again in their snazzy yellow Mustang.¬† Their brother in law, Harold Phillips, has made a loan of a book to the Champion News–‚ÄúThe White River Chronicles of S. C. Turnbo, Man and Wildlife on the Ozarks Frontier.‚Ä̬† Champion is in the middle of an area rich in pioneer history.¬† There is still plenty to learn about the past.¬† Check it out at¬† www.championnews.us.

¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Neighbors at the Vanzant Community Center have been busy doing good.¬† (They never weary in it.)¬† A couple of weeks ago they held a benefit for Tracy Fleetwood who had lost her house in a fire.¬†¬† Saturday they put together a fund raiser for the maintenance of the Tetrick Cemetery. ¬†A little research shows this cemetery to be over a little south east of Drury in the area that is known as Buckhart. ¬†It was named for Henry Tetrick who came to Missouri in the late 1850‚Äôs when his father, George Smith Tetrick, moved the family to Douglas County.¬† Henry served in the Civil War in the 46th Missouri Infantry.¬† Somewhere along the line he married Sarah Jane Upshaw and so the Cemetery has the full support of the Upshaw clan.¬† No doubt the General himself has been instrumental in the benefit as well as in the actual work in the cemetery.¬† There were quite a number of visiting Upshaws and Upshaw descendants from as far away as Idaho and Alaska.¬† One of them has just returned from a deployment in Iraq and one is expecting to go before long.¬† Military service is noble and the Nation has a debt of love and gratitude to all its Veterans of the past and all those who wear its uniforms today‚ÄĒin the present moment.¬† There were Veterans in the parade at the Norwood Farmer‚Äôs Day celebration and all reports were that it was a great day for it.¬† Mrs. Eva Powell said that she ran into friends there that she had not seen in years and that they had a good visit.¬† She particularly enjoyed the children‚Äôs parade.¬†

¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† The present moment is full of birthdays.¬† Last week Louise Hutchison and Zoey Louise of Austin, TX shared a birthday.¬† Bill Long who famously said, ‚ÄúIt just doesn‚Äôt take as much to keep me busy as it used to,‚ÄĚ had his the week before.¬† Sue Upshaw celebrates this week and the end of the week finds Champion News reader, Becky Heston, also down in Texas, doing the birthday boogie together (just in different places) with the shy Champion tinker.¬†¬† Upshaw twins will complete their annual trip around the sun early in the coming week and Skyline Auxiliary President, Betty Dye, will start a new year on the 7th.¬† Louise Hutchison had good news the other day that her 16th great-grandchild had been born.¬† She said that she had received 53 e-mails on her birthday and a bunch of cards in the mail.¬† Sad news Monday morning is that she has been taken ill again and Champions are all wishing the very best for her.¬† Noble Barker passed away suddenly on Sunday and Saturday marked the end of this life of Elitta January.¬† For those just being born, for those passing away (that is everyone) and those left behind, an appropriate message came through the ¬†Champion at getgoin.net ¬†mailbox:¬† ‚ÄúMay today there be peace within.¬† May you trust that you are exactly where you are meant to be.¬† May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith in yourself and others.¬† May you use the gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you.¬† May you be content with yourself just the way you are.¬† Let this knowledge settle into your bones, and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love.¬† It is there for each and every one of us.‚Ä̬†

¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† One Champion asked why it is that fall does not last as long as summer.¬† Spring and summer each have about 92 days and fall and winter have about 88 days each all on account of the elliptical orbit of the Earth and time seems to speed up and slow down according to how close the planet is to the sun.¬† Of course, that is not exactly true and better explanations are welcome.¬† Climb the broad and elegant staircase leading to Henson‚Äôs Store situated permanently on the North Side of the Square in Downtown Champion and explain the passage of time or send those explanations by e-mail or by wonderful snail mail to Champion Items, Rt. 2, Box 367, Norwood, MO 65717.¬† The Rt. 2 mail carrier is one of Champion‚Äôs favorite visitors.¬† She is an avid gardener, a talented craftswoman, and reliably, a sweet friendly face. So, as the Beatles sang, ‚ÄúWrite me a post card, drop me a line stating point of view.¬† Indicate precisely what you mean to say.¬† Yours sincerely‚Ķ‚ÄĚ Champion!¬† Looking on the Bright Side!

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September 19, 2011

September 19, 2011

CHAMPION‚ÄĒSeptember 19, 2011

          Hardly had the dust settled from the Champion School Reunion when the West Plains Wagon Club came clippetty-clopping in to town.  This year there were thirteen wagons and someone said about twenty out-riders.   When asked about adventures and excitement along the way, Wagon-master Clifton Luna said that without those things the trip would be no fun, though he did not elaborate on just what those things were.  Others in the group alluded to someone having been kicked in the ribs over by Dora somewhere and not being able to make the train after all.  (These were not Mr. Luna’s ribs.  His were broken a few weeks back and he says they are mending just fine.)  Someone mentioned a runaway wagon down a steep bank owing to something black having been dropped on the ground and then there was the dump truck.  Several mentioned a big truck that came bearing down on them suddenly from over a hill and it was touch and go about whether or not it would be able to stop in time.  It was agreed that it would have been catastrophic and most likely would have taken out half the train.  Nancy Webster will have some movies of the trip to share soon and Champions are excited to see them.   A great deal of excitement was generated by the new store building over on the North side of the Square.  Folks who have been making this ride for many years say they miss the old building but that the new one really looks like it belongs there and it was observed by many that it looks built to last.

Feasting

The Champion School Reunion is still on the minds of many.¬† Tom Cooley was hurt that his name had not been mentioned in the paper after the reunion when he had clearly been there.¬†¬†¬† It seems that he signed up for the drawing of the door prizes, but did not sign the register of those attending.¬† Arlene had not been able to make it to the reunion and without her lovely presence; Tom seemed to just disappear into the crowd in spite of his hat with his name written across the front of it.¬†¬† It was a glad happenstance that they were taking their visiting friends out on a tour of Champion on the day that the wagon train came through town.¬† Marsha and Larry Benson visit every year from their home in Ellijay, Georgia.¬† Marsha says that the name of the town is from a Native American word for where two rivers join.¬† ¬†The river formed by the two meeting there at Ellijay is the Coosawatee River.¬† The town has an apple festival every October since their county is the Apple Capital of Georgia.¬†¬† Next year Champion friends will be looking for apples when the Bensons arrive.¬†¬† Back to the Reunion and a correction, Greta Cope could not possibly have been a teacher at the Champion School because she was just a little kid‚ÄĒabout the age of certain Hutchisons who are still considered to be much in the prime of their lives.¬† It is the kind of mistake that only a newcomer of the rankest sort could make.¬† Greta‚Äôs parents are Wayne and Francis Sutherland and they were students at the Champion School.¬† Greta lives over by Hartville and hopefully will be back for next year‚Äôs reunion which will be a big one‚ÄĒthirty years!¬†¬† Pictures are still being circulated and the glow of this reunion is fresh in many Old Champion hearts.¬† A note from Cathy Mallernee says that she is sending pictures of the Henson family to their cousin who lives over on her old family home place just North of Champion.¬†¬† She said that she and her husband H.J. Mallernee, Jr. lived in Denlow and his parents owned the Cold Springs Store back then.¬† She knew Eva and Royce Henson as they went to Ava Hi together.¬†¬† A note from Eva Henson said how much they had enjoyed the reunion and seeing old classmates, and the new store.¬† ‚ÄúChampions can be so proud and warm themselves by the wood stove this winter.‚Ä̬† Royce and his wife Joe Henson came back over from Springfield to enjoy the wagon train on Thursday.¬† They might be back again when Bud Hutchison has his trail ride in October.¬† Royce was still chuckling about having buried Bud‚Äôs dog in the Valentine box,¬† not that it was funny that Bud‚Äôs dog had been run over, just that Champion still has so much going on after all this time.¬† ‚ÄúEverything exciting happens in Champion,‚ÄĚ he said, or words to that effect.¬† Russell and Sue Upshaw came to view the wagon train as part of their continuing celebration of their 55th wedding anniversary.¬† Champion!

Pete and Kate Proctor had a good visit with their son Bryan and his family over the Labor Day week   They are back home in Virginia now as Bryan gets ready for another deployment.  He is about to complete his 19th year in the Service.    Pete said that the VFW did a Flag Ceremony for the 9/11 Remembrance.   Pete and Joe Kelley from the VFW Post 3770 presented the POW/MIA missing man Table at the Skyline School on the 16th of September.    Champions are grateful to have Pete to keep them informed about the Nation’s Veterans and those serving currently.  It is a small percentage of the population that does such an important job for everyone.  Champions all!

The sudden wonderful change in the weather will have Champions back out in the garden getting those fall things in the ground.¬†¬†¬† Linda‚Äôs Almanac from over at the Plant Place in Norwood says that from the 27th through the 30th will be an excellent time for planting those above ground crops that can go in now, particularly the leafy vegetables.¬† Get a look at that almanac before it is out of date.¬† There is a copy on the refrigerator in Henson‚Äôs Store located again on the North Side of the Square in Historic Downtown Champion just south of the ellijay of Fox Creek and Clever Creek.¬† Find the almanac posted at www.championnews.us.¬† Send any Champion news, stories or inquires to Champion Items, Rt. 2, Box 367, Norwood, MO 65717 or to Champion at getgon.net.¬† ‚ÄúThere‚Äôs some cotton thread and needle for the folks away out yonder, a shovel for a miner who left his home to wander, some rheumatism pills for the settlers in the hills.¬† Get along mule, get along.‚Ä̬† Another long year stretches out before the next wagon train is due.¬† It will seem like no time at all, meanwhile, head on down to Champion for a Look on the Bright Side!

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September 12, 2011

September 12, 2011

CHAMPION‚ÄĒSeptember 12, 2011

¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† One of the highlights of the 29th Champion School Reunion was the guided tour of the Recreation of the Historic Emporium over on the North Side of the Square.¬†¬† It was fairly empty at the time with no fixtures or merchandize.¬† Vaughn Henson was heard to say that all it really needed was more beautifully finished wood!¬† He was just being funny and those were not his exact words, but he was right to remark on the light gleaming off the beautiful floors and ceiling.¬† The old stove is there on a specialized stove board with super-triple stainless steel stove pipe going straight up through the ceiling.¬† The stove is the same one that has always been there, though it has had a little work done as is required by every wonderful old thing that stays in regular use.¬† The footprint of the building is larger than the old one and probably someone knows exactly by how much if the precise figure were to be required.¬†¬† What the tourists came away with from their excursion was a good sense of continuity.¬† If the old building was not replicated exactly, certainly the feeling of the place is very reminiscent of the Old Champion, enough to give a newcomer like Vaughn an appreciation of the past that his ancestors enjoyed.¬† ¬†¬†There were any number of Upshaws traipsing through the place and an unknown number of Hensons of that Ezra Henson tribe, as well as many others.¬† It had been said that in the old days everything worth happening happened out on the porch at the Store, or was told about out there.¬† One time J.T. Shelton said that of a Saturday there would be seventy-five people down in Champion just visiting.¬† ‚ÄúHanging out‚ÄĚ is what they would call it now and there is no doubt that the comfortable and pleasant facilities in Champion will inspire much more of that in the future.¬† No loitering.¬†

¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† To correct information about the School Reunion from last week, Greta Cope could not possibly have been a teacher at the Champion School because she was just a little kid‚ÄĒabout the age of certain Hutchisons who are still considered to be much in the prime of their lives.¬† It is the kind of mistake that only a newcomer of the rankest sort could make.¬† Greta‚Äôs parents are Wayne and Francis Sutherland and they were students at the Champion School. ¬†Greta lives over by Hartville and hopefully will be back for next year‚Äôs reunion which will be a big one‚ÄĒthirty years!¬† ¬†Pictures are still being circulated and the glow of this reunion is fresh in many Old Champion hearts.

          On Tuesday the Skyline VFD Auxiliary will have its regular September meeting.   The last few meetings have been held in the Loafing Shed over on the West Side of the Square, but this one will be in the designated meeting room of the New Old Champion Emporium.   The summer picnic will be assessed and thoughts for activities in the year ahead will be discussed.  This is a solid little organization that does a lot of good work.  Any Skyline VFD Member is welcome to participate.  Information will always be available in Champion at the Store.   Tuesday happens to be Tanna Wiseman’s birthday.  She put in a lot of hard work at the picnic.  She does every year.   With luck, she will get to attend the meeting so her friends can sing that special song.  

The West Plains Wagon Club will be rolling into Champion on Thursday afternoon.  Mr. Luna and his outfit pulled out of West Plains on Monday headed this way.  They come around through Dora and perhaps this year someone will take a map down to Champion to see if any of them can trace their exact route for the edification of nonparticipants.   Mrs. Luna said (by phone Monday morning) that she thought there were  going to be quite a few on this train, but of course, some join up late and some leave along the way, so there is no way of telling just how many will be in Champion until they get here.  They will really have a treat in store for them when they arrive.  They generally get to Champion  in the early afternoon and they can always expect a good turn out from the community and surrounding area as people come to enjoy seeing the animals and the unique wagons and rigs that the various wagon clubs have put together.   Royce Henson, from up in Springfield, said that he would try to make it back down for the event.  Champions will be glad to see him again so soon.  Sue and Russell Upshaw plan to be there.  They just celebrated their 55th wedding anniversary on Saturday.  It must be working for them as they seem to be smiling all the time.  There will be plenty of time for some good visiting and everyone is welcome to enjoy the spectacle.   A listing for an album of wagon train music claims that it sounds the way it sounded in the 1800’s.  Some of the songs included are Camptown Races, Listen to the Mocking Bird, Rubber Dolly, Beautiful Dreamer, Cindy, and Silver Threads Among the Gold.  Music has always been a big part of Champion life and several have remarked about the wonderful stage that the new porch will be. 

Pete Proctor is still smiling from having had such a nice visit with his son Bryan and his family.  They are back home in Virginia now as Bryan gets ready for another deployment.  He is about to complete his 19th year in the Service. Pete said that the VFW did a Flag Ceremony for the 9/11 Remembrance.  The public is invited to the Mountain Grove Square for a Flag Ceremony at 9:00 a.m. on Friday the 16th and then Pete and Joe Kelley from the VFW Post 3770 will be at Skyline School at 10:00 to do the POW/MIA missing man Table.  Champions are grateful to have Pete to keep them informed about the Nation’s Veterans and those serving currently.  It is a small percentage of the population that does such an important job for everyone.  Champions all!

The very nature of exclusivity requires that some are excluded.¬†¬† So if you find yourself on the fringes of what is happening and only included as part of the general masses, just consider yourself lucky.¬† Consider that you are doing a favor for your exclusive friends by giving them someone to leave out.¬† We all have our places and our roles to play.¬† The main thing is not to take it personally.¬† That is one of the Four Agreements that are generally found in some form in every religious doctrine.¬† This one happens to be from the Toltec people who predated the Aztecs and the Mayans.¬† The other agreements besides ‚ÄĚDon‚Äôt take anything personally,‚ÄĚ are‚ÄĚ Be impeccable with your word;‚ÄĚ‚ÄĚ Don‚Äôt make assumptions;‚ÄĚ and ‚ÄúAlways do your best.‚Ä̬† Agree or disagree at Champion at getgoin.net ¬†or by real post at Rt. 2, Box 367, Norwood, MO 65717.¬† Champions understand the value of the rural mail carrier and they just know that when she pulls into Champion, she is looking on the Bright Side!

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September 5, 2011

September 5, 2011

CHAMPION–September 5, 2011

        Monday, Labor Day, found Champions delighted with the cooler temperatures and much immersed in reliving the Champion School Reunion of 2011.  It was the twenty-ninth such gathering.  The first one had three hundred in attendance.  There were fewer this time with numbers ranging from 68 to 80.  An asterisk (*) beside a name in this list indicates the person attended school at Champion.  Those attending this year were:  Robert Brown*, Connie Brown, Charles Lambert*, Catherine Mallernee, Stanley Stillings, Elsie Curtis*, Debbie Massey, Fae Krider, Richard and Kaye Johnston, Levon* and Karen Lambert, Barbara (Proctor) Cooper*, Ruby Proctor*, Linda Watts, Robert Graham, Mary Graham, Shawna and Jerry* Smith, Vivian (Krider) Floyd*, Larry* and Theresa Wrinkles,Esther Wrinkles*, Tanna and Kalyssa Wiseman, Elva Ragland*, Vaughn Henson, Jo Henson, Kenneth Henson*, Dawn Henson, Benton Huthison*, Irene Dooms*, Delmar Dooms*, Royce Henson*, Kenneth and Barbara Anderson, Betty Henson, Bert and Mary Hutchinson, Enola McCoy Hutchinson Benson*, Bud* and Wilma Hutchison, Darren, Jordan, and Joshua Hutchison, Sharon and Robert Upshaw, Ronnie and Charlene* Medlock, Russell, Sue, Daily and Dean Upshaw, Leslee Krider, Marty, Dakota and Dylan Watts, Alvin and Beverly Barnhart, Wes Smith*, Lonnie Curtis*, Wilma Hamby*, Robert Dean Brixey, Connie Hicks*, Kathy Hines, Harold and Eva Henson* Phillips, Staci and Dustin Cline, Foster and Roger Wiseman, Bob Phillips, Wayne * and Francis* Sutherland, May Pearl Sutherland*, and Greeta Cope.  Ms. Cope was the only Champion teacher attending this year.  Every year a few names get left off the list and that will probably be the case this time.  Certainly, you know if you were there!

¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Good conversations with Ruby Proctor and Esther Wrinkles on Monday verifies that they had a good time.¬† Ruby said that she had thought she might miss it this year because she was having trouble with her hearing, but as the day approached she just could not resist going and she is very proud to have done so.¬† Some of the things Ruby might have missed hearing included several people talking about an ‘old’ man, Ben Irvin who lived up the hill in a house where Fae Krider’s house now sits.¬† He was about sixty someone said and he really liked to come down to the school at lunch time to aggravate the kids.¬† A lot of the children were afraid of him and Esther Wrinkles said that she would have as soon ‘fanned’ out when it was her time to bat rather than to run by him.¬† He was over on the second base line.¬† She got a hit and stayed on first base, which was the big walnut tree, until she was forced to run when the next batter hit the ball.¬† As she was trying to dodge Ben Irvin who made a face and stuck his arms out to grab her, she stubbed her toe on a tree root sticking up and took a tumble.¬† Well, there was Ben Irvin right over her and¬†he about scared her to death.¬† Another person said that in the winter he used to like to roll the little kids in the snow until they cried.¬† The teacher, Willie Freeman, would not let the kids snowball him until one day when he had gone too far.¬† Then Willie Freeman said, “Let him have it!” and the kids gave Ben Irvin a pounding with their snowballs.¬† Another story was one told several times by the guy who claimed not to have thrown Little Elvie’s shoes in the creek, but that he carefully placed them there and then joined in with the rest of the student body searching for them.¬† He searched diligently, but was found out to be the culprit himself and had to pay the piper.¬† A pair of shoes back in those days represented an investment.¬† It was Valentines Day and after the valentines were all distributed, the question came up about what to do with the beautifully decorated valentine box.¬† ¬† It was decided that they would bury Bud Hutchison’s dog in it since the dog had been hit and killed by a car earlier in the day.¬† Bert Hutchinson stood up and introduced himself to the crowd, many of whom turned out to be his cousins and distant cousins.¬† He remarked that he had always been curious about the ‘n’ in Huthinson and the lack of it in Hutchison.¬† It is reported that the ‘n’ came into being via Uncle Billy Hutchinson who was the first to use it.¬† Uncle Billy was Clifford and Everet’s Dad and Clifford was Bert’s Dad.¬† Bert says, in effect, that with or without the ‘n,’ it is all the same bunch–the same family.

        Bert Hutchinson and his wife Mary had a cute little black dog with them at the reunion and Kalyssa Wiseman took such a shine to the little dog that she wound up carrying him around with her.  To the credit of the little dog, he was very patient, and allowed the four year old to wag him around like a doll.  The next day Kalyssa was delighted to report that she had received a little Jack Russell puppy for her birthday.  His name is Boogety.  It is hard to tell which of them has the most energy, but they obviously enjoy each other tremendously.  (It was reported last week that Kalyssa and her distant cousin, Jenna Brixey, shared a birthday on the 28th of the month.  Well, their birthday is on the 31st of August.  The error does not seem to matter much to them.  They celebrate all the time.)  Lyman (Pete) Proctor has been celebrating this week.  His son, Bryan, and his family have been visiting for a few days.  Bryan had just arrived on the morning of the reunion and so they did not make it out to Champion that day.  Before he leaves town, however, it is expected that Pete and Bryan will be down to look the place over.

¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† The Recreation of the Historic Emporium over on the North Side of the Square was the subject of much interest and speculation.¬† Tours were taken and it was agreed uniformly that the building is spectacular.¬† While it does not look like the old store, it is agreed that the architect captured the ‘flavor’ of the old one.¬† The only negative thing heard was a remark by one guy who had to say that it was ‘way over-built.’¬† He had a couple of grouchy kinds of things to say about how hard it is to make a living out in this part of the country and how it is likely to be way off in future years when no one will remember the old days.¬† He was roundly dismissed as a Pessimist and obviously not a real “Champion” even though he is related to some and well regarded by everyone who knows him.¬† It was nice that the reunion people were able to see the store before all the merchandise and fixtures are moved in.¬† They had the opportunity to admire the workmanship and sturdiness and general beauty of a well built wooden building.¬† By next year it will seem as if this one has always been the Champion Store.¬† Speculation is that commerce will be flowing through the new building one of these days soon.¬† E-mail your Champion Reunion Pictures and stories to Champion News and look for them or others next week after Champion computers are back up and running.¬† A local glitch has slowed things down a little, but Champions are very good at waiting.¬† Come down to Champion singing the old Haden Family theme song, “Keep on the Sunny Side of Life.”¬† You’ll be in Champion–Looking on the Bright Side.

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