Roses and thorns 5/15/11

May 14, 2011 8:21:00 PM



A rose to the organizers, vendors and patrons of our local farmers'' markets. 


The Hitching Lot Farmers Market in Columbus has been going for a few weeks now, but had its grand opening Saturday. The market, at Second Street and Second Avenue North downtown, runs Saturday morning from 7-10 a.m., Monday evenings from 5-7, and Thursday mornings from 6-10. 


The Starkville Community Market started last Saturday, and runs every Saturday through the summer. The market, at the corner of Jackson and Lampkin streets, begins at 7:30 a.m., and runs until around 11:30. 


We''re all for the Krogers of the world. But noting compares to locally grown vegetables, freshly baked bread, or locally canned preserves. The markets are also a great gathering place for the community, with live music, craft vendors, and demonstrations on everything from gardening to beekeeping. 


Experience our local farmers markets, give a little financial boost to our local growers and artisans, and come away healthier in the process. 




A rose to everyone who has given time or money to aid the victims of the devastating storms of April. 


Locally, people are giving in ways large and small. The donations have ranged from Carl Hogan auto dealerships'' $30,000 donation to tornado relief, to two Caledonia girls collecting a handful of dollars by organizing an aluminum can drive. 


Local folks have been donating time manning phone banks or working directly to clean up devastated areas in Monroe County and in Tuscaloosa, Ala. 


Today, a concert organized by members of the Columbus police and fire departments and Station 7 Grill, dubbed C-Town Cares, begins at noon at the Riverwalk. A $5 donation is requested; a tractor-trailer will also be parked at the Riverwalk for non-perishable food items. 


Thanks to all for making a difference to help victims of the deadly storms. 




A rose to Tina Sweeten, the new executive director of the Columbus Arts Council. Sweeten''s appointment was announced Monday, and this week she has been immersing herself in the operations of the nonprofit agency that brings visual and performing arts, concerts, classes and exhibits to Columbus and Lowndes County. 


Columbus has a first-rate space for the arts in the Rosenweig Arts Center downtown, and we have high hopes that a top-notch director now leads the agency. Sweeten most recently served as field supervisor of the Early Childhood Institute at Mississippi State University. She holds a Master of Arts degree in nonprofit management from Hamline University in St. Paul, Minn., and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Western Washington University. She also holds an Advanced Graduate Study Certificate in organizational psychology from Capella University in Minneapolis, Minn., and is currently working toward her Ph.D. in sociology at MSU. 


Sweeten brings a strong grant-writing background to the position, which depends on grants and donations for survival. 


We wish her well in her new position.