By Emmy Lou Holtz/Allied News Correspondent
Harrisville is a unique little town! To quote my friend, Bob Barnes, "There is no better place to live than Harrisville and the surrounding area."
Bob asked me to extend his appreciation to everyone who gave to the Salvation Army Kettle this year, and especially those who came to ring the bell.
This included volunteers for specific days from Harmony Presbyterian Church, Harrisville United Methodist Church, Calvary OPC, Branch Church and West Unity Community Church, and many more folks from the community who came to help. Sometimes Bob was the bell ringer along with along his candy sales. Red Kettle locations this year were the bank, the post office, and Henry's market.
Now here's the good news! This year, donations for the Salvation Army totaled more that $6,000. The amount was $600 more than that collected last year. Considering the state of the economy in general, this indicates the community willingness to help someone who needs it.
There are two special people who deserve our appreciation for their work with the Salvation Army. One is Linda McDowell, who once again chaired the Red Kettle campaign. She organized the drive and assigned bell ringers.
Susie Braham has been working with the yearly drive for more than 20 years. She actually works with the Salvation Army all year long. We don't see Susie as much as we do some others, but she is there, on duty all year long.
Thank you, Susie and Linda.
▪ As you know, Bob is known as "Candy Man" in Harrisville, as he spends many hours raising money for the Salvation Army, "Feed My Sheep" Food Cupboard, and to help with Fourth of July fireworks. As of the end of December, Bob had sold more than 6,000 candy bars.
A week or so before Christmas, a man went to the bank and left a very large box filled with trucks, tractors, cars and other toys. Instructions were to give the box to Bob Barnes and have him give the toys to children who came by while he was selling candy. Bob followed the suggestion, and let each child choose one toy. One young boy quietly said to him "I have two brothers in the car." He was given two more toys. Isn't this the spirit of Christmas?
A man came to Bob and asked if he had someone in mind that he and his wife could pay for their Christmas. Bob knew such a situation, and he passed on the money given to him by the man. The "thank you" note he received was a joy, and he passed the thanks on to the giver.
No one in town represents the true spirit of Christmas better that Bob Barnes. This is his testimony. "This is a special time of year. Christ was born at this time. He came to give us the greatest gift we can ever receive, eternal life to those who believe in Him. So please believe."
Bob further commented on people who, throughout the year, give me money to pay for a candy bar for a child that passes by. One man in particular is quite generous. (Dave, you know who you are.) The faces of children who receive a toy for Christmas or a candy bar all year are Bob's reward.
Bob asked me to thank some really special people as the year ends. Gary and Mary Ann at the Ice Cream Factory for the hot soup in winter and milkshakes in the summer which they bring to him as he works in front of the bank. By the way, did you know that the Ice Cream Factory sells hot soups? He also thanked bank personnel for giving him space each weekend.
▪ Harrisville must say goodbye to another long-time resident. Andy Smith was a classmate of mine Ð we were two of the 17 students who graduated from Harrisville High School in the class of 1944. In our class play, Andy had the part of Bildad Tapp. I was his daughter, Catalpa. We extend our sympathy to Andy's son Richard and daughter Andria and all of his friends and family.
▪ Harrisville United Methodist Church has begun a new ministry for children. Each Sunday there will be children's church immediately after the message up front by the pastor. The teacher for the week will be at the door of the sanctuary to lead the children downstairs, where parents will pick them up after the service.
The vision of children's ministry is to create the foundation in a child's mind that Jesus wants to be and can be their best friend. Prayer can be difficult and children are no exception. Children can learn that there is nothing more heartwarming than a group of children praying together. Talking to our creator is an awesome way to spend some time. Each week there will be a variety of things for children through fifth grade. There will be hands on learning, crafts, bible stories, prayer time, puppet interactive discussions, music, and the challenge to talk with the adults in their lives about what they have learned.
▪ We must apologize for the error two weeks ago in relation to the story about the new "Welcome Harrisville" signs installed at each entrance into our town.
I think the facts were okay, but when it came to identifying those in the photo, I blew it by giving Doug Kennedy the wrong last name. Doug, I am very sorry. Messing up a name is unpardonable. For my readers, that was Doug Kennedy in the photo, along with Bob Barnes and Joe Lowers...
This is my special message to Doug. Perhaps I had an unexpressed desire for revenge here. Two or three years ago, Doug Kennedy asked me to take a photo of his neat little cornfield, all tied in picturesque shocks. So I took my camera and went to his home, but he was not there. I, of course, shot the photo anyhow. However, unfortunately for me, Doug did not turn off his electric fence, and I discovered that pretty fast when I leaned in to take the photo. Are we even, Doug?
Calendar of Coming Events:
Jan. 26: Congregational Dinner at Harmony Presbyterian Church, 6 p.m. Congregational Meeting, Part II will follow dinner.
Jan. 27: Soup night at Harmony United Presbyterian Church, 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.
This Week in Our History
Jan. 4: Utah entered the Union, the 45th state, 1896,
Jan. 6: New Mexico entered the Union, the 47th state, 1912,
Jan. 7: The first presidential election was held, 1789.
Jan. 8: U.S. forces defeated the British in the Battle of New Orleans, 1814.
Jan. 9: Connecticut entered the Union the 5th state, 1788. Mississippi seceded from the Union, 1861.
Jan. 10: The Holocaust began, 1933.
A Lighter Moment
More Silly Medical Terms:
Outpatient - A person who has fainted
Pelvis - Second cousin to Elvis
Recovery room - Place to do upholstery
Secretion - Hiding something
Terminal illness - getting sick at the train station
Tumor - More than one
Thought for the Week
"Voting is the most basic essential of citizenship and I think that any man or woman in this country who fails to avail him or herself of that right should hide in shame. I truly wish there were some sort of badge of dishonor that a non voter would have to wear." -- India Edwards
This is my last column as Harrisville's correspondent. I appreciate all those who urged me not to quit writing, and also the support of many. Bob Barnes asked me to quote him. "A big thank you to Emmy Lou for a job well done these many years, by letting people know about our town and the area around us."
Brenda Bole will be writing for Harrisville from now on. You can reach her at 724-967-4440. Her address is 524 S. Main Street. Material can be emailed to Brenda at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you, friends and neighbors. Happy New Year 2012 and God bless you to each of you.
Emmy Lou Holtz can be reached at 724-735-2600.
Published Jan. 4, 2012, in Allied News. Pick up a copy at 201 A Erie St., Grove City.