The responses to my last blog -- Buy Brazil! -- reminded me of how amazed I was moving to a "small town" and finding out how many activities and opportunities to get involved Clay County offers. Anyone who complains they have "nothing to do" (mostly young and still stupid types) simply isn't paying attention. There really is something for anybody and everybody who has any interest in anything beyond watching TV (my personal preference).
First, there are social service organizations, of which my quickly drawn-up list includes: American Legion, Co-Op Benevolence Ministry, Crisis Pregnancy Center, Eagle Lodge, Elks Lodge, Food Pantry, Genealogy Library, Historical Society, Humane Society, Kiwanis, Moose Lodge, Optimists, Rotary, and Veterans of Foreign Wars.
As to activities for youth, there has to be as many things to do as we've got kids in this town: Sports for boys and girls, the 4-H, YMCA activities, and whatever else. And, who knows, maybe someday we will actually get that Skateboard Park!
One of the responses to referred to the Community Theater. I'm not personally aware of what other similar opportunities may exist.
If you don't live in the city proper, there is probably a Volunteer Fire Department near you that could use some help. If you do live in town there is that Emergency Rescue group.
Another thing which has always struck me is how many Jonah Fish Fry's spring up every spring and summer. I'm convinced a person could spend May through October going to some social or festival somewhere every week and never leave Clay County.
What we don't have, it seems to me, is any kind of "Clearing House" for informing people of what is going on, what opportunities to get involved exist, and how I can help. Everybody with something to offer seems to be on their own when it comes to getting the word out.
Certainly I am as open to suggestions as anyone about such an information exchange, but let me start the list:
Would a website help?
Could The Brazil Times be enlisted to publish a monthly calendar, or offer something like the weekly church advertisements in the Saturday editions?
The radio, cable, and area TV broadcasters have some civic obligation; how could this be tapped into?
Whatever could be done in terms of getting the word out must be permanent. To promote the idea to "Be Busy in Brazil" won't go very far if it is only a one time thing. What is needed is a way to promote information on what's available often enough, consistently enough that no one in Brazil (not even the young and still stupid types) can be bored!
Got any suggestions?
David L. Lewis is an observer of and sometimes commentator on life who may be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.