Trick or Treat!

Halloween at Skyline R2 was fun all day—fun for everyone! That was on top of the fun the preschool, kindergarten and first graders had on their fabulous field trip to the Rockbridge Rainbow Trout and Game Ranch earlier in the week. Now there is more fun coming up on Friday night at the Skyline PTO Fall Festival. From 6 to 7:30 there will be chili and hotdogs, carnival games and the chance to support this great little rural school. Many of the newcomers to the Skyline School District are retired people from other parts of the country. Real estate values and tax rates would make this part of the world attractive for retirees even if it were not the incredibly beautiful place that it is, with its hills and trees and running water, with the glorious distant vistas and hidden treasures. School is always a big part of any community and Skyline appreciates the newcomers and their backing of the young people who are going to be running things around here before long. Some of those kids having birthdays soon are eighth grader Hailey Hall, who celebrates on November 4th; sixth grader, Mason Solomon, on the 7th; seventh grader, Justin Borders, and third grader, Alex Webster, on the 9th; fourth grader, Madelynn Vivod, on the 13th and third grader, Isabella Jeffrey, on the 14th. Happy birthday to all you Skyline Tigers and welcome you retirees from wherever you came to join this great community. We hope to see you at school on Friday evening. The weather is going to be perfect.

The Eastern Douglas County Volunteer Fire Department had an excellent event on Saturday. It was their tenth annual chili supper/auction. The Vanzant Community Building was packed. The food, the music (Backyard Bluegrass for the tenth year), the auction and the fellowship fun made for a great evening. The revenue generated will help sustain this vital volunteer organization that provides aid when it is needed most. All our area volunteer fire departments provide mutual-aid to each other when it is needed. We live in a great part of the world.

While we are extolling the virtues of our place on the planet, let us say, “Howdy, and thank you” to the gentlemen doing the county road works. A while back floods had taken out a low water crossing and made a mess of things up on Cold Springs Road. For a little while it was impassable, then for quite a while it was just rough and rocky, but serviceable. Now it is a fine, smooth concrete slab, arguably the best looking one of the several on that two mile stretch of rough and rocky. Seriously, we really appreciate the hard work it takes to keep our roads in good shape.

Cow farmer, Bob Leach, had a birthday on Monday. He will get his card in Champion on Wednesday. He likes Gene Autry’s songs like “Sioux City Sue.” Emerson Rose was in town recently. She is a Champion granddaughter with a birthday on November 5th. We remember a lovely woman on the 6th, who never liked having her birthday publicized. Foster and Kalyssa’s granddad, Wayne Wiseman, has the 7th as his special day. The 8th belongs to the grandfather of Seamus, Lizzy, and Zak. He introduced us to the word weltanschauung and changed our world view. Friends remember Chuck Barns on the 11th. He traveled the world doing big construction, and finished his career in Norwood at The Plant Place a few years ago. He had some great stories to tell and played a mean hand of bridge. The sterling Jill Sterling is an amazing artist. She specializes in minutia and will tell you that she ‘does things with stuff.’ Carol Callahan Barnhart has the 14th for her birthday. She lives up in Mountain Grove but has Champion connections. So does Fern Bishop. Her family will celebrate her on the 14th as well. The 15th is for a Waldo Champion now up in Springfield doing good works and improving the internet.

Parts of the following paragraph appeared in last week’s posting here but none of it made it into ink. The Herald edits The Champion News pretty heavily sometimes. Sometimes it is about length and sometimes about content.

Changes in the foliage over the past couple of weeks have been marvelous to watch—from green to flamboyant to brown and soon it will just be winter’s vertical gray brush pile. It all seems dramatic because just a few weeks ago we were experiencing 90 degree days. We often remark about the swift passage of time, but this seems abrupt. We will still have some nice fall days ahead, so we are not to despair. Each day will be appreciated for its own qualities. Since the only constant is change, we can expect dramatic changes from day to day—weather. What we see over a thirty year stretch is climate. Ruby Proctor said that when she was a girl in Champion, there would be snow on the ground sometimes from Thanksgiving to Easter. Ruby was born in 1925, and saw the climate change in her 88 years. Think back. When is the last time we had one of those long, hard winters? Local health food stores, Jean’s Healthway in Ava and Meadowbrook in Mountain Grove have buttons with the likeness of adopted Champion granddaughter, Greta Thunberg (pronounced ‘TUNberg’). Get one and wear it to spark conversations and perhaps raise an awareness of the real concerns of millions of young people around the world. In 1960, there were 3.032 billion people in the world. Today there are 7.7 billion of us. These “interesting” times have many suffering and many endeavoring to help alleviate that misery. Some people abhor any form of social activism as futile and unnecessary if they do not perceive their own lives to be affected. “Why should I bother?” Bother because there is no other place for us to go. We are all in it together—world citizens. Champions! Looking on the Bright Side!