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Roses and thorns 10-3-10




A rose to organizers of the Seventh Avenue Heritage Festival, held over the weekend in Columbus. 


Centerpieces of the festival this year included a Mississippi Blues Trail marker unveiled at the site of the Queen City Hotel, whose legendary guests included Bobby Blue Bland, B.B. King, Fats Domino, Duke Ellington and Little Richard. 


Also new this year was a parade led by the fabulous Jackson State University''s Sonic Boom of the South, which winded its way from Catfish Alley downtown to the festival.  


The festival allows the entire city to remember the legacy of the Seventh Avenue area and its importance to the historic fabric of Columbus. 




A rose to organizers of the Fall Tour of Historic Homes, held from Friday through today. The tour this year featured rides on the Convention and Visitors Bureau''s double-decker bus, and tours of historic homes including the Amzi Love Home, Stephen D. Lee Home, Rosewood Manor, Waverley Mansion, Temple Heights and others. 


If you didn''t partake of tours Friday and Saturday, there''s still an opportunity -- the Jackie O'' House, Shadowlawn and Summer Time Cottage will be open for tours today from 2-5 p.m. These historic homes are worth seeing and revisiting. For more information, visit the Convention and Visitors Bureau website at 




A rose to Main Street Columbus and the volunteers who have decorated downtown in fall themes. Back are the hay bales, pumpkins other fall trimmings we have come to expect this time of year -- the decorations are another heralding of the changing seasons, and something unique about Columbus we enjoy seeing each year. 




A rose to the Columbus Police Department for securing a $518,000 federal COPS grant, designed to keep three officers on the street for three years. 


Any help during tough budgetary times is welcome. This grant was competitive -- every department that applied didn''t get it. And, among Mississippi cities, Columbus received the largest grant amount. 




A rose to the Columbus School District, and specifically to Franklin Elementary Health Sciences and Wellness Magnet School, for landing a high-profile partnership with the University of Mississippi Medical Center. 


Giving Franklin''s students exposure to students and faculty of UMMC can only reap dividends for the school well into the future, and hopefully expose students to career avenues they may not have dreamed of before.



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Reader Comments

Article Comment walter commented at 10/15/2010 11:28:00 AM:

I wished there was more clarification about the COPS Grant to the city. It seems a bit out of the ordinary for $500,000+ dollars for 3 cops for three years! Evidently, the three cops the city intends to hire must be Kojak, Shaft and Truck Turner! Otherwise, simple math would indicate, if the statement is to be taken literally, that the cops hired would average more than $150,000 each for salaries, accessories (service revolvers, uniforms, badges, radios, cruisers, etc.), pensions and insurance.

I would hope that there is a provision in the grant which allows for a portion of the funds to be used toward crime prevention. For instance, $75,000 of the grant monies would go a long ways in helping organizations such as a non-profit dude ranch to involve at-risk boys and girls in the fine-art of horseback riding, grooming and grazing. Of course, 4-H and The Y could use some of the funds to expand their offerings and help make there programs more accessable to under-privileged youths, too.

Perhaps I'm much too idealistic, have too much faith in our youths or much too optimistic, but, I absolutely believe that an ounce of prevention, (stated differently, dollars for prevention) is much better than and go much fart5her than dealing with consequences, after the effect! Policemen, in a diverse society of people of various gender, age, religious, class, education, and moral differences, as any sane person would readily acknowledge, are vitally necessary. But, hasn't the time come for us to find more encouraging shows to watch on t.v. and occupy our time, today, than CSI, SUV, NY Undercover and on and on, infinitum? Isn't it time for more shows like Stairway to Heaven and other sjhows of that vein?

That's a lot of money from taxpayers to pay for criminal activity that can be avoided from the start, if only people with vision were to step-up to the plate and demand that elected-officials learn to think outside of the box; come out of denial; and stop doing the same old things and expecting different results. Maybe citizens could even consider electing a new-type of representative class; A class of elected-officials who have integrity, creativity, courage and faith in people. Cops, if screened properly before being hired, can rise to the occasion and really began to practice what is stated in their motto: "To Serve and To Protect."


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