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Monday, Jan. 23, 2017
Features
Murray Bishoff: Facing the flood of crime (01/21/17)
Lawrence County commissioners faced an extraordinary moment with exasperated county officials who were more than outraged at being charged with handling public safety in the county without the funds to do it. Usually it takes some effort to pry answers out of officials about their priorities, their projections and their reservations about the coming year's spending plan. ...
Jennifer Conner: Local oil spill a reminder of need for clean energy (01/21/17)
Dear Editor: The Enbridge Energy spill of 15,000 gallons of crude oil that took place last week in Lawrence County is just one local example of why it is so important to continue on our journey beyond outdated dirty energy to 100 percent clean energy...
Murray Bishoff: When winter storms come knocking (01/14/17)
Perhaps it's just reflex, but just the idea of an ice storm sends me shivering. I've seen quite a few in the 30 years I've lived in southwest Missouri, and huddled more times than I care to remember around a limited heat source while the world went snap, crackle and crash outside. For reasons that defy explanation, the run-up to this weekend has seemed out of character...
Jason Brawner: Camp Barnabas reflects on 2016, looks to 2017 (01/14/17)
Dear Editor: As I look back on 2016, I can't help but grin. I reflect back on the highs and lows of the past year, and I picture what I saw, felt and heard at Camp Barnabas. I see campers smiling from ear to ear as they eagerly enter our gates. I feel the tears rush down my cheek as I watch parents of a new camper experience the joy that comes when they see their child is unconditionally loved and accepted. ...
Murray Bishoff: Celebrating the Miracle on Broadway (01/07/17)
As a rule of thumb, there are three basic ways to run fundraisers locally. People will turn out to eat, to be entertained by some sort of performance, and to party. Some of the most successful fundraisers, like Dining for Diabetes, try to combine all three...
Murray Bishoff: A windy new year ahead (12/31/16)
This hasn't been a good year for predictions. The crystal ball for the Monett area seemed close to the mark, but very limited in scope. We lost an eatery downtown and gained one in the Old Town Mall. New housing construction inched forward, not much to get excited about but better than frozen in the water. ...
Lance Indovina Sr. and family: Indovina family thanks community for support (12/31/16)
Dear Editor, We would like to extend a special thank you to the people of Monett. Our family suffered a loss at the beginning of this month that stunned us all. As tragic as this was for us, it was the response of the community that has helped us through this difficult time...
Murray Bishoff: Legacy of giving lives on after death (12/24/16)
Today we bear witness to the lasting legacy of one man's generosity. The Linn Thornton Memorial Christmas Dinner takes place today at the First United Methodist Church in Monett. Thornton and his first wife Geraldine labored mightily to offer the holiday feast to the community. ...
Murray Bishoff: Consolidation calls a road to nowhere (12/17/16)
Issues that surfaced this week in the Purdy Special Road District were nothing really new -- one patron wanting his road fixed and questions over whether the road district can appropriately do that. The situation raises the question about road districts in general that really doesn't seem to have a good answer...
Murray Bishoff: Christmas traditions live on locally (12/10/16)
Christmas is such an amazing time of the year. Some of the traditions that surface are unlike anything else all year long. The children at the Purdy Elementary School Christmas program on Dec. 1 sang with amazing diction and clarity, a great tribute to new vocal music teacher Christina Harmon. ...
Karen Standerwick (Nevin): Reader defends Trump voters (12/03/16)
Dear Editor: As a Christian, a Missouri resident for 20 years and a white educated female who voted for Donald Trump, I take issue with what Vance Halfaker expressed in his letter printed in The Monett Times on Nov. 19. I find it distressing he believes a majority of local citizens are ignorant and racist because we voted for Trump. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Just like the pundits got it wrong, Mr. Halfaker fails to understand why so many voters chose Trump...
Bob and Linda Bartelsmeyer: Thanks for the Festival of Lights (12/03/16)
Dear Editor: Since returning back home to the Barry/Lawrence County area, we would like to acknowledge the efforts of the Monett Chamber of Commerce, local businesses and the city of Monett for the wonderful Festival of Lights display at the Monett City Park...
Murray Bishoff: A moment for Monettans to savor (12/03/16)
There's something oddly foreboding about going into a place you've seen a thousand times but never entered. Then, going in, you find it filled with familiar Monett purple, and you think you're home. That's how I felt last Saturday walking into Plaster Stadium in Springfield for Monett's championship football game. ...
Ann Hall: Monett offers plenty in holiday season (12/03/16)
Dear Editor: Monett is blessed with many opportunities to enjoy the Thanksgiving/Christmas season, with the Chamber of Commerce and others working hard to promote Monett. The annual Festival of Flavors, showcasing talented area food vendors, is a fun evening with lots of good food and time to visit with friends. If you missed it this year, mark your calendars for 2017...
Murray Bishoff: Thankful, and rightly so (11/28/16)
Twenty years ago I wrote a Thanksgiving column for this space and gave a few reasons for which to be thankful that year. These included: Monett has a new high school that works. Unemployment for the area is still very low. We have seen another year with no fatal fires in Monett...
Local voters say to Hispanics: 'We don't want you here' (11/22/16)
Dear Editor, Earlier this month, an overwhelming majority of citizens in Barry County and Lawrence County cast their votes for Donald J. Trump. As a Christian and a long-time resident of rural Missouri, I find this fact profoundly distressing. I have experienced first-hand the kind and welcoming spirit of rural Missourians, but now we have reinforced the stereotyped image of ourselves as ignorant and hateful racists...
Murray Bishoff: The cost of serenity and public use (11/19/16)
The direction for the Monett swimming pool now appears clear. Though the decision will depend on whether the public will adopt a sale tax to pay for a $3.1 million undertaking, polling suggests the public prefers a new pool for its money, and so the city will proceed in that direction...
Murray Bishoff: Elections and the search for help (11/12/16)
Over the course of the long presidential election, one interesting story came out of Purdy. A longtime businessman in that town who runs a garage wrote a check to Donald Trump's campaign and mailed it. A few weeks later, he got a letter back from the campaign that included his check. The Trump people thanked him for the donation, but said their candidate was running to help small business people. Mr. Trump felt the donor needed the money more than he did, so he returned it...
Murray Bishoff: Another way to the mountaintop (11/05/16)
There was a time, perhaps not too long ago, when parents would tell children, "When you grow up, you can be anything you want, even president!" After this presidential election, is that a very nice thing to say to a child? To say that you will have to endure public ridicule and insults without end?...
Murray Bishoff: A snapshot of 2016 Monett (10/29/16)
The Monett Historical Society has decided that its museum needs a time capsule, some way to pass a message on to Monettans in a distant decade to say who we were and what we're all about. Time capsules are tricky. In past decades, it was common to include a newspaper, a document of the day, or some artifact of importance...
Murray Bishoff: Local echoes of a national nightmare (10/22/16)
Talk of voter fraud that has been bantered around in the national election campaign makes one happy to live in small-town southwest Missouri. It seems unlikely that we will face a Zombie Apocalypse on Nov. 8. According to Barry County Clerk Gary Youngblood, his election judges generally know the people who come in to vote. Voting fraud is pretty unlikely under those conditions...
Murray Bishoff: Politics and the art of the grudge (10/15/16)
Few fights in the public arena become uglier than those in politics. We've seen enough of them around the Monett area to know that all arguments end eventually, a revelation at the end of what feels like the longest presidential race ever. Sore feelings over time will go away...
Murray Bishoff : The evolution of public education (10/08/16)
The evolution of public education certainly resembles a long and winding road, ever taking forks in the road, setting new priorities, ever searching for the best way to prepare students for their futures. A recently retired educator in another state, to whom I recently spoke, has watched some of the latest gyrations and observed some of the changes pushing high schools to change their strategies reflect ulterior motives...
Murray Bishoff: A good retailer can be hard to keep (10/01/16)
This News this week that Mike Brownsberger is closing his downtown Monett clothing store came as a blow to the Monett faithful. It's not that anyone will fault Mike and Gail Brownsberger for wanting to retire. Forty-six years downtown is impressive and warrants a great deal of praise...
Murray Bishoff: Goodbye to an old friend (09/24/16)
This week, Monett lost a friend, one of those special people who add to the tapestry of the community in ways that are hard to measure and harder to forget. Gayland Burkett was never going to be a civic leader. His reading skills were perhaps less than minimal. He could not drive. He came from very humble beginnings from a difficult family situation. He never had much...
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