Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Act as if what you do makes a difference. Because It Does.

Our Town holds a Fall Festival every September.  I have attended, nearly every year of my life.  (Dedication, as I mostly lived out of town.)  The Kid refers to Harvest Days as The Greatest Weekend on Earth. 
Harvest Days is not organized by a board hired and paid well for their MANY hours.  The organizers of Harvest Days, devote their time, simply to bring a smile to my children's faces.  If that were the only scale to judge their performance... job VERY well done.
Unfortunately, this festival, this town and this country are slowly dying.  Festivals HAVE to make money to continue. Town's HAVE to earn money to survive.  Both, are starting to fail, like the country around us.
Monday evening, the President of our Harvest Days committee took a progressive idea to the Town Board meeting, in an attempt to bring new life to our festival.  An idea which has been proven extremely effective in many towns in our state. 
Frankly SOMETHING has to be done to help our community.  Did I attend the meeting in support of my friend and the festival committee?? No. We had an awful weekend, I was exhausted, I have children etc.. I had legitimate excuses.
Bottom line?? I was wrong and lazy.
Honestly, I am OVER meetings.  I am completely frustrated by members of our town.  To read a history of this blog: I have spent 3 years actively exhausting myself and my efforts.  I have planned large scale Relay events, to low attendance.  I have encouraged and promoted beautification projects, I have attended countless planning meetings for events, athletic fundraisers, new festivals, fresh ideas yada.  And repeatedly, I have witnessed The Commish, Sara H, Jerry B and more, be dismissed by older generations uncomfortable with change.
(To clarify, there is a 'retired clan' whom are faithful volunteers to this community and awesome little yogis, which we are grateful for!!)
But there are countless others, unwilling to compromise.  I am personally tired.  Monday, I did not want to waste my time because I knew the idea would be denied.
Again, that was wrong of me.
 
I do not deny the older members of this town, faithfully built a community which I adore. Our Pleasantville, enraptured me years ago. Still.. eventually, one generation must hand their town to the younger community members.  And if we want Our Town to remain special, we must be willing to accept the burden/privilege.  The Thirty Somethings need to involve themselves.  WE are the parents of the young children, which will attend the schools, which are currently in jeopardy.  WE are the new business owners.  WE are the new homeowners... with mortgages.  OUR new families need a school, a grocery store, even a pizza joint.  The Thirty Somethings can not stay home because we just don't 'feel' like saving our dying town tonight.
 
This is what I propose:
If you would like our Festival to survive.
If you would like our street to look more...
 
 like this full and busy street....
(Festival Rockford, IL)
 
Or if you would simply like your town, your board and especially your Mayor to listen to the ideas of your peers.  I urge you to make your voice heard. 
Others are requesting calls to your Mayor's home... except honestly, does he really HAVE to tell anyone he received a phone call??
I would like you to copy/paste and print the following form letter. Simply sign your name. You are welcome to add your flair. (one copy for you and one for your spouse... because you are BOTH voters.) Then, mail the letter to the town hall.  Specifically to your Chief of Police or the secretary.  They will not deny the existence of a printed/stamped and mailed letter from a crowd of voters.
The letter:
------------------------------------------------
Dwight Village Hall
209 S Prairie Ave
Dwight
815-584-3077

To Mayor Wilkey,
The Dwight Village Board
and whomever else this may concern:

I am writing to request you reconsider the idea presented to you by Jerry Beier and the Harvest Days committee members.  I would like for you to work with the committee to find a thoughtful compromise to their suggestion, which will benefit everyone involved.  Ensuring the safety and the prosperity of Harvest Days.  I believe, our fall festival needs fresh and progressive ideas to keep our town relevant.

Admittedly, our town is slowly entering financial crisis. We need to encourage new or unique ideas, to increase our exposure and desire to remain a strong and prosperous community.

Furthermore, it is my feeling as a voter, Mayor Wilkey and The Dwight Board need to make a more conscience effort to consider the suggestions, which have/are being presented by younger members of our town.  Not only are they the future of Dwight but they are personally invested in the future successes of our schools and businesses. 

Please honor their efforts, with respect and careful consideration.
I would like this letter, to be shown to the Mayor and the Board, as a written declaration of my support for Jerry Beier and The Harvest Days Committee.

Signed,
Tru Stories
Address: 222nd Floor
Phone Number: 888-8888
-------------------------------------------------------

Again, easily click print and sign your name.  Or add personal touches.  There is meeting early next week, please mail your letters soon.  If you are a parent or a homeowner, it is irresponsible not to be involved.

"Nobody made a greater mistake, than he who did nothing because he could only do a little." ~Edmund Burke

“You are not here merely to make a living. You are here in order to enable the world to live more amply, with greater vision, with a finer spirit of hope and achievement. You are here to enrich the world and you impoverish yourself, if you forget.”
-Pres. Woodrow Wilson
 

17 comments:

The Page Turner said...

Letters printed. Easy as can be. If you do not want to waste a stamp, drop your letter off. Let them see your face.
Plan to attend the Board Meeting on Monday evening at 6:00. See if the Board will amend the regulations so Harvest Days can sell alcohol wrist bands. See if the Mayor listens to the people and the board.
If 10 people showed up that would be great, 20 shocking, 30 would me a HUGE message. Pack the house!

Tru Stories said...

And let's not just end there...
There have been many great ideas presented to the Mayor which have not been considered.
The point needs to be made that we want more positive feedback for each idea with more thoughtful consideration.

We printed 15 which are waiting at the Barbershop for signatures.
Hand delivering each letter would be even more amazing...
Otherwise, we have envelopes.

Anonymous said...

Great Job! Letters Printed!
Natasha

Jennifer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bird said...

Done!

The Page Turner said...

You say you want a revolution
Well, you know
We all want to change the world
You tell me that it's evolution
Well, you know
We all want to change the world
But when you talk about destruction
Don't you know that you can count me out
Don't you know it's gonna be all right
All right, all right

You say you got a real solution
Well, you know
We'd all love to see the plan
You ask me for a contribution
Well, you know
We're doing what we can

Etc.......
(Sorry, I got caught up in the excitement.)

Cath said...

Letters done. Well written, Tru Stories. I feel bad I didn't make the meeting last week, but will try to get a sitter for next Monday.

Cath said...

Letters done. Well written, Tru Stories. I feel bad I didn't make the meeting last week, but will try to get a sitter for next Monday.

Anonymous said...

I love my little home town, thank you for the call to action! I hope many take a stand! I will be there for Harvest Days and look forward to it every year! =)
JD in GC

Anonymous said...

They'll be seeing one from Chicago!

...I added this part: "I am proud of my friends who have stayed in Dwight and are putting their time and energy into assuring that Dwight is a great place for their own kids, like it was for us."

Thanks guys, and can't wait for HHD'12!
_Cari

Anonymous said...

hell, i'll make a bunch if copies & have peeps sign them.
we gotta do something!!! nice work.

_jho

Anonymous said...

Confused...did you say the Board did not support this idea?

Tru Stories said...

No... I did not specifically say The Board denied this particular idea.
I am simply stating we would like the Mayor and the Board in general to remain more positive and open to new ideas.
I certainly understand certain Board members receive suggestions better than others.
I am also very clear, Whom is our biggest obstacle.... and he is not a Board Member.

Anonymous said...

This town is divided by the people who want to save it, and the people who just say that it will get better. Well it won't get better. '' A house divided against it self cannot stand ''. - Abe Lincoln ( Who's body was on the train that went through this town ). Don't be mad at me, but it's true, I realize it too.
-The Kid

Tru Stories said...

Wow.
The Kid wrote that comment all on his own.
Watch out world, looks like The Kid may be our Mayor in 8 years.

The Page Turner said...

The Kid is something special! So impressive that he is quoting Lincoln.

Kori said...

Well written TS, thanks for your time and support! =)