Good decision on Morenci downtown trees 2012.12.12

Written by David Green.

There was a time several years ago when trees grew in Morenci’s downtown. Seeing some green in the business district was appreciated by most people, but not by everyone.

We remember a few business owners complaining about leaves on the sidewalk and leaves being tracked into their stores. There were also some people who were understandably upset with a buckling sidewalk as the trees grew over the years.

City council aims to alleviate the latter concern by placing trees in large sidewalk planters. As far as the leaves go, we hope business owners decide the added beauty on the downtown streets is worth the time spent with a broom.

Seeing green downtown will depend upon the city’s luck in winning a grant for the project. If the money doesn’t come through, the containers won’t be purchased. Local funding for such a project isn’t readily available.

Approval of the grant application didn’t come easily for council members. Half of the group initially wanted to go after a basic container; the other half favored a more expensive item expected to look much more attractive in the downtown. 

We’re pleased that council members are cautious about spending, but we’re also glad that two councilors changed their minds and went after the more expensive model. It seems like a good investment for an additional $2,200, and that amount might decrease if private donations are received.

Many times over the decades, council members have taken the cheaper approach or simply said “no.” This council broke free of that.

When Morenci’s Main Street rebuilding project was completed in 2002, many complaints and jokes were heard about the excessive width of the new sidewalks.

Finally, we can see why they were built so wide. If the grant comes through, they’ll be a perfect size to hold the new containers for trees.

  • Front.bridge Cross
    STEP BY STEP—Wyatt Stevens of Morenci makes his way across a rope bridge Sunday during the Michigan DNR’s Great Outdoors Jamboree at Lake Hudson Recreation Area. The Tecumseh Boy Scout Troop constructed the bridge again this year after taking a break in 2016. The Jamboree offered a variety of activities for a wide range of age groups. Morenci’s Stair District Library set up activities again this year and had visits with dozens of kids. See the back page for additional photos.
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    LEADING THE WAY—The Morenci Area High School marching band led the way across the pedestrian bridge on Morenci’s south side for the annual Labor Day Bridge Walk. The Band Boosters shared profits from the sale of T-shirts with the walk’s sponsor, the Morenci Area Chamber of Commerce. Additional photos are on the back page.
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    LOOKING UP—More than 200 people showed up at Stair District Library Monday afternoon to view the big celestial event with free glasses provided by a grant from the Space Science Institute. The library offered craft activities from noon to 1 p.m., refreshments including Cosmic Cake from Zingerman’s Bakehouse and a live viewing of the eclipse from NASA on a large screen. As the sky darkened slightly, more and more people moved outside to the sidewalk to take a look at the shrinking sun. If you missed it, hang on for the next total eclipse in 2024 as the path comes even closer to this area.
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    THE MAYOR—Cecil Schoonover poses with a collection of garden gnomes that mysteriously arrive and disappear from his property. Along with the gnomes, someone created the sign stating that he is the Mayor of Gnomesville. He hasn’t yet tracked down the people involved in the prank, but he’s having a good time with the mystery.
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    TAKE A BREAK—Last Wednesday’s session of Stair District Library’s Summer Reading Program ended with a quiet period in a class presented by yoga instructor Melany Gladieux of Toledo. Children learned a variety of yoga poses in the main room at the library, then finished off the session relaxing. Additional photos are on page 7. Area children are invited to visit the library today when the Michigan Science Center presents a flight program at 11 a.m. and roller coasters at 1 p.m.
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    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.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.
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