The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.carry.casket
    CARRYING—Riley Terry (blue jacket) and Mason Vaughn lead the way, carrying an empty casket outside to the hearse waiting at the curb. Morenci juniors and seniors visited Eagle Funeral Home last week to learn about the role of a funeral director and to understand the process of arranging for a funeral.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.office
    NEW OFFICES—Fayette village administrator Steve Blue speaks with tax administrator Genna Biddix at the new front desk of the village office. Village council members voted to use budgeted renovation funds targeted for the old office and instead buy the vacant bank building on the corner of Main and Fayette streets. The old office was sold to Sherwood State Bank. When everything is put into place in the spacious new village office, an open house will be scheduled. Council member David Wheeler donated all of his time needed to make changes in the bank interior to fit the Village’s needs.

2008.12.17 Gifts for every taste, and those without any

Written by David Green.

By RICH FOLEY

Recently, I was discussing bad Christmas gifts with a friend and he told me about the time a relative (his grandmother, if I remember correctly) gave him a can of pie filling with a one dollar bill taped around it.

There’s nothing wrong with the money, but pie filling? Maybe she meant for him to buy a ready-made crust with the dollar and make his own pie. That’s certainly not the greatest gift, but it could have been a lot worse. Heck, she could have bought him a Clapper.

Yes, they still make The Clapper, or possibly, they’re still trying to sell off the original production run. They might actually be close to selling out the first batch as I see the company is now introducing The Clapper Plus. Plus what, I’m not sure. Perhaps a shovel to bury it with.

The Chia Pet people are also coming out with new products, trying to expand their market. Now there’s some sort of Chia product for your pet. Yes, don’t forget to buy a Christmas gift for your pet, even if they won’t be returning the favor.

One pet supply retailer had an eight-page advertising insert in Sunday’s paper with suggestions for Fido’s or Fifi’s holiday gift. If they could talk, I’d bet they would beg you to skip the Santa hat, elf hat, Christmas bandana and other goofy items. Perhaps the suede pet bed would be more to their liking. 

And, most of all, don’t give them the stain and odor remover. What kind of gift is that? There’s nothing like embarrassing them in front of their friends for Christmas.

Some of the pet snacks in the flyer concern me, too, like the case of 100 pig ears dog chews, just $89.98. There’s 50 pigs that won’t be having a happy holiday. And how about another product, called “Canine Cattle 17-inch Beefy Femur?” Is this for real?

And finally, for the person who is so lacking in ideas that they can’t come up with something to buy a pet, the store is offering a gift card. Your pet can put it in their billfold, next to their Master Card and drivers license.

I still think buying holiday gifts for pets is a silly idea. Next, someone will start advocating giving presents to stuffed animals. Then I’ll be faced with my Snuggle Bears demanding digital cameras, tattoos, or maybe the new Lucinda Williams CD.

And if the auto industry isn’t already in enough trouble, they’re now facing competition from Fisher Price, which has jumped into the electric car business, just in time for Christmas shopping.

There’s the Fisher Price Ford Mustang, which seats two children and comes with a 12 volt battery and two speed transmission. Top speed is 5 mph, somewhat comparable to a real electric car. Like the Big Three, Fisher Price has been cutting prices, slashing their Mustang to $249.99.

If that’s not fancy enough, your child will be the envy of the neighborhood in the Fisher Price Cadillac Escalade. This two-seater, priced at just $10 more than the Mustang, comes complete with a real FM radio and digital clock. Plus, it comes with chrome “bling” style wheels for your budding “gangsta.” And at about ten thousand dollars less than the similarly-sized SMART car, Fisher Price looks to be the real smart alternative.

But if your kids aren’t ready to hit the Interstate just yet, maybe a collectable replica vehicle would be a better choice. The Fairfield Mint catalog has dozens to pick from, like the 1908 Model T Ford, 1952 Nash, 1950 Studebaker, 1957 Chevy Bel Air, 1969 Corvair and 2009 Corvette. And then there’s the 1938 Mercedes G4....

The G4 is a six-wheel, all-terrain limousine used during World War II by officers of the Third Reich. Just the thing we should be commemorating, especially in a model a child might end up playing with. The model comes complete with figurines of a driver and two officers. Of course, there’s no diecast Adolf Hitler to accompany the vehicle, but isn’t the idea bad enough without him?

Obviously, I’m not suggesting that anyone buy the Mercedes model. In fact, compared to that, maybe a can of pie filling really is the perfect Christmas gift.

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