Another Great Olive Day Celebrated
Another beautiful September's almost over, and another fun Olive
Day celebration passed. Sure, there were some who still questioned
the underlying political reasons for what's become the community's
biggest celebration, but they were largely subsumed as everyone
went beyond partisanship to simply have a good time together.
There were also some deeper thoughts brought forth by the date
of this year's Olive Day, on 9/11, which had an effect on the
town beyond any connections to people lost to the tragedies
of that fateful day nine years ago, or the patriotic wallop
we all took watching it unfold. Memories of the old Lemon Squeeze,
for example, and the weeks when local travel was upended by
the closing of the Dividing Weir... all out of misguided fear.
So much has happened since then, though, that who we are now,
as a municipality, seems a world away from who we were then.
Our taxes went up, we got yanked into a bitter battle over regional
(or at least school district-wide) equity matters, and then
our taxes stayed up after we finally caught up with revaluing
who we were as a town. We've gotten used to major detours, but
are also now preparing for a new Route 28A, a little straighter
than it once was, through half our town. And there's a new sewer
system in Boiceville, setting up the possibility of a real town
All were celebrated, in their ways, at Olive Day. Along with
the promise of a great autumn ahead, albeit with some major
changes. Here, as well as everywhere.
Enjoy the beautiful weather!
Some Things To Be Thinking About...
Now that school has started and everyone's back in work mode,
there are a few odds and ends from the summer we feel need
addressing. Most are issues we'd like to think are at the
front of responsible minds in our area. And yet, we worry
that they may have been overlooked.
First off, as our front page story notes, isn't it time we
start to look seriously at safety issues along our Route 28
traffic corridor, as promised by so many over the past decade?
And while we're at it, maybe we can also start working together
as towns and counties on not only counting our individual
dollars and cents, but sharing services and opportunities
as a means of future savings... as well as creating a better
regional identity to those who pass through our area not knowing
of all our longheld differences?
Next, how about taking the work completed to create a state-of-the-art
auditorium at the high school one step further, by upgrading
its acoustics so we can really start programming world-class
music (including whatever our Voicefest friends offer)? And
reminding ourselves that yes, the arts DO make a difference.
While we're at it, though, can we also return to serious talk
about just how we want our education system to look in the
years to come? Are we going to choose a new path towards full
centralization or support for community schooling or just
wing it for a while longer?
On a state level, whatever happened to our state budget? What's
really getting funded, in our area, and what's not? Is Belleayre
shifting focus based on climate and economic changes? Shouldn't
we know where to peg our futures?
Similarly, on a federal basis, are we really so disgruntled
that we're simply going to punt on all those hot-button issues
some of us don't think worth discussing, such as a better
healthcare system that serves all of us, , the continuing
threat of climate change, needed changes in energy sourcing
(and consumption), and truly meaningful financial reform...
including continuing usery-like bank payments, loan default
set-ups, and income inequalities? Do such issues rate as serious,
or will we simply leave them for the rest of the world to
And yes, what about that Phoenicia Sewer proposal? Are we
going to finally see some serious infrastructure investment
into our corridor's main town or spend the coming decades
talking, like many municipalities that refused New deal projects
during the 1930s, about what could have been, once, before
what should have been was simply let to pass by, on a gamble?
Nice to be back to school, eh, to face the serious stuff again.
Drive safely... and stay thoughtful.