Music, muscle and milk: Do-gooders deserve a special shout-out

October 2017 Posted in Columnists & Opinion

dixon2016It is so easy to talk about the multitude of things going awry in the world, and then have to suffer the “slings and arrows of outrageous” barbs for offering a viewpoint counter to those who lie in wait for the attack, like a cheetah stalking the herd’s wounded or youngest gazelle.

That being said, I told my daughter that I wanted to write something positive this time, and about people doing good things. Bless her heart, she went out on Facebook posing that question, and had more than 150 comments and recommendations in what seemed like nano-seconds. There are so many do-gooders, not all will make it to print. Yet.

Sarah Weitzman sat in a booth in the rain raising funds for “Friends of Music” at the Oct. 7 Silverton Sidewalk Shindig. She set up kid activities, including musical instruments to play, and wiped them all off (the instruments and probably kids, too). We already knew she had the voice of an angel. Seems she got the heart, too.

Frank Petrik, band director extraordinaire for Silverton High School, led his students in the audio-visually stunning performance at the Foxes Homecoming game Oct. 6. One patron said the band’s performance of songs from Les Mis, nearly brought her to tears. The “Leader of the Band” rocks.

Josh Craig, head coach of the Foxes Football team, has put together a very solid team in the rugged Mid-Willamette Athletic Conference. His shows enthusiasm, knowledge, and a willingness to humor a lot of old men who all played high school football with Al Bundy from Married with Children fame and relentlessly offer unsolicited tips for the next game. Doing so with unfailing respect, diplomatic aplomb and politeness gets him an A+ in my grade book.

Kudos to the Community Roots School annual auction, scheduled for the Mount Angel Festhalle on Friday, Oct. 27, from 6-10 p.m. and even more so to the tons of supporters who buy up some spectacular gifts in the oral and silent auction each year yet don’t even have kids enrolled in the school. That is so impressive and indicative of how deeply those roots run in this community.

Janet Smith, yet another unsung heroine, represents all things good for something we just didn’t talk about in public not long ago – breastfeeding! Janet is an independent lactation nurse, and is known on Facebook as “Lambs by Janet Smith.” There is an incredibly active group of moms in this area who believe this woman is destined for sainthood. Nothing but the “breast” for those mothers whenever possible, and a ton of support (and donated milk) when it isn’t. Janet helps those babies “latch on.” Gotta love that.

Lara Ghio Gaiton started a Spanish story time Tuesdays at the Silver Falls library. The popular story sessions are free. Muy bueno, mi amiga. Gracias.

Keith Amano and Manuel Borbon have created citizenship classes, with childcare provided. Classes are every Saturday 10-noon at Immanuel Lutheran.
How cool and timely is that?

There is a new Scholarship for Social Justice (an annual $500 is the goal) which Sheldon Lesire created specifically for that cause. A current topic if ever there was one. But the effort also sends a message to elected officials who haven’t recognized the rightness of that cause yet and might want to take heed before the next election cycle. The fund is growing as I write.

And to my lovely and indefatigable friend of 53 years, Beth Davisson, for all you have done, all you are doing, and all you have yet to do in this community that you love and which loves you back exponentially. Air kisses! And a great big hug at the next Rotary meeting.

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