2009.07.08 A little late, but a hearfelt thanks

Written by David Green.

“An acknowledgment page is a terrifying thing, because you are sure to forget someone you should have remembered.“

By COLLEEN LEDDY

Elizabeth Berg made that observation 26 years ago at the start of her first novel, “Durable Goods,” but she could have been talking about me writing this column of gratitude for all those who helped make her visit to the library such a lovely affair.

All I can say is, I’m sorry. I’m sorry that I’m going to forget you.

I’m sorry that I’ve done it again. Actually, I’ve once again not done it...not publicly thanked in a timely fashion, the people who so graciously made another major library event a major success.

I don’t know what happens to me. I have notes to myself that say things like: “Make a list of people to thank.”

I mean for it to be an ongoing list, one that I will add to as I go along. I think I won’t forget people like Joyce Woerner and Lois Speed who are stalwart helpers in any library affair.

And, it’s not too hard to remember that Liz Stella, Dianne Grieder, Pat Houttekier, Katherine Wollter and my mother-in-law, Jackie Green, made delicious cookies, but wasn’t there somebody else? Somebody who didn’t ask if I needed any help, somebody who just brought in cookies figuring we could use them? Was it you, Norma White?

And what connection to cookies just made me realize I could have totally missed mentioning Sharon Bruce, Sally Kruger, and Liz, who prepared carrots, cucumbers and celery for the vegetable tray? I think I started thinking about other foods that start with “C.” We seem to serve a lot of “C” foods at the library, which reminds me that Laurie Schisler made sure the cheese was beautifully cut to order.

I would have remembered another “C” word, the chairs, because I was getting kind of frantic the day before Berg’s arrival after getting e-mails from people in places like Grand Rapids and Battle Creek saying they were coming and did they have to register.

Scott Phillips and Jim Yatzek and other men from the Morenci Bible Fellowship not only let us borrow church chairs, they carried them into the library so we’d be prepared for the crowd that exceeded our seating capacity.

There’s just a wonderful cast of characters that brought it all together. Jane Brasher-Garrow and Dianne Grieder and other members of the amazing Morenci Garden Club decorated the library with potted plants and elegant vases of flowers. The Garden Club, Jane and Dianne specifically this year, also takes care of the flowers in front of the library, keeping them watered and looking great.

They pointed out the sorry state of two bushes and Rich Hoadley of R&W Nursery replaced them in time for Berg’s appearance.

Ken Fether of SimiAir worked his magic again to make the welcome banner and Barney Vanderpool and his workers had it hanging in no time. Those guys come through every time.

And our staff, Sheri Frost, Lori Drogowski and Janelle Thomas, along with Sandra Whipple who keeps things spanking clean, are just indispensable.

Our wonderful VolunTeens helped set up the library and a crew of them (Sam Majahrowski, Nate Grieder, and Liz Gautz) came in on that Saturday afternoon and restored order. I always say I don’t know how we ever managed before we had VolunTeens.

I owe my soul to Liz Stella. She is the most giving person I have ever met. Not only did she make a huge meal for Elizabeth Berg (the meal that reeled Berg in), she fed a couple dozen other people at the same time. In a discussion of gratitude, say “Liz” and everyone will know what you mean.

And, right up there with Liz, is my husband, David Green, the publisher/editor/reporter/photographer/janitor who doesn’t complain when I come to bed at 4 a.m. with cold knees, but merely rubs my back until I fall asleep. David’s coverage of library events is a big part of what makes them successful.

At gatherings of librarians around the state, I’ve gotten a lot of mileage out of the line, “I sleep with the editor,” when people ask how we get such good coverage in the newspaper.

But Liz would tell you that even before I worked at the library, he was providing widespread coverage of library events.

Hmm, was she spending time with him, too?

I sound like both a broken record and a parrot when I evoke the words of Liz who always said we couldn’t do it without everybody’s help, that all of you make it happen. Thank you.

  • Front.batter
    THE DERBY—Tyler “Smallpox” Flakne of Minnesota’s Home Run League All-Stars goes for the fence Friday night during the National Wiffle League Association’s home run derby in Morenci. This year the wiffleball national tournament moved from Dublin, Ohio, to Morenci’s Wakefield Park. During the derby, competitors had two minutes to hit as many home runs as possible. The winner this year finished with 21. See page 6 and 7 for additional photos.
  • Front.green Screen
    OUT OF THIS WORLD—Elizabeth McFadden and Elise Christle pose in front of the green screen as VolunTeen Noah Gilson makes them appear as though they are standing on the Moon. More photos from the Stair District Library’s NASA @ My Library program are on page 12.
  • Front.snake
    Lannis Smith of the Leslie Science and Nature Center in Ann Arbor shows off a python last week at Stair District Library's Summer Reading Program.
  • Front.fireworks
    FIREWORKS erupt Saturday night over Morenci’s Wakefield Park during the waning hours of the Town and Country Festival. Additional festival photos are inside.
  • Pipeline Spread
    LINED UP—Lengths of pipe were put in place last week along the route of the Rover natural gas pipeline that will stretch from Defiance, Ohio, to Ontario, Canada. Topsoil was removed before the pipes were laid out. The 42-inch diameter pipeline is scheduled for completion in November.
  • Front.F.school
    PROGRESS continues on the agriculture classroom addition at Fayette High School. The project will add 2,900 square feet of space and include an overhead door that would allow equipment to be driven inside. The building should be ready for the start of school in August. Work on ball fields and a running track is also underway.
  • Front.rock Study
    ROCKHOUNDS—From the left, Joseph McCullough, Sean Pagett and Jonathan McCullough peer through hand lenses to study rocks. The project is part of Morenci Elementary School’s summer camp that continues into August.

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