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

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    FIRST SNOW—Heavy, wet flakes piled deep on tree branches—and windshields—as the area received its first significant snowfall of the season. “Usually it begins with a dusting or two,” said George Isobar, Morenci’s observer for the National Weather Service, “but this time it came with a vengeance.” By the end of the day Saturday, a little over four inches of snow was on the ground. Now comes the thaw with temperatures in the 40s and 50s for three days.
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    SKEWERS, gumdrops, and marshmallows are all that’s needed to create interesting shapes and designs for Layla McDowell Saturday at Stair District Library’s “Sculptamania!” Open House. The program featuring design games and materials is one part of a larger project funded by a $7,500 Curiosity Creates grant from Disney and the American Library Association. Additional photos are on page 7.
    Morenci marching band members took to the field Friday night dressed for Halloween during the Bulldog’s first playoff game. Morenci fans had a bit of a scare until the fourth quarter when the Bulldogs scored 30 points to leave Lenawee Christian School behind. Whiteford visits Morenci this Friday for the district championship game. From the left is Clayton Borton, Morgan Merillat and James O’Brien.
    DNA PUZZLE—Mitchell Storrs and Wyatt Mohr tackle a puzzle representing the structure of DNA. There’s only one correct way for all the pieces to fit. It’s one of the new materials that can be used in both biology and chemistry classes, said teacher Loretta Cox.
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    A TRAFFIC control worker stands in the middle of Morenci’s Main Street Tuesday morning, waiting for the next flow of vehicles to be let through from the west. The dusty gravel surface was sealed with a layer of tar, leaving only the application of paint for new striping. The project was completed in conjunction with county road commission work west of Morenci.
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    JUNIORS Jazmin Smith and Trevor Corkle struggle against a team from the sophomore class Friday during the annual tug of war at the Homecoming Games pep rally. Even the seniors struggled against the sophomores who won the competition. At the main course of the day, the Bulldog football team struggled against Whiteford in a homecoming loss.
    YOUNG soccer players surived a chilly morning Saturday in Morenci’s PTO league. From the left is Emma Cordts, Wayne Corser, Carter and Levi Seitz, Briella York and Drew Joughin. Two more weeks of soccer remain for this season.
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    BOWEN BAUMGARTNER of Morenci makes his way across a rope bridge constructed by the Tecumseh Boy Scout troop Sunday at Lake Hudson Recreation Area. The bridge was one of many challenges, displays and games set up for the annual Youth Jamboree by the Michigan DNR. Additional photos on are the back page of this week’s Observer.
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    One of four senior candidates will be crowned the fall homecoming queen during half-time of this week’s Morenci-Whiteford football game. In the back row (left to right) is exchange student Kinga Vidor (her escort will be Caylob Alcock), seniors Alli VanBrandt (escorted by Sam Cool), Larissa Elliott (escorted by Clayton Borton), Samantha Wright (escorted by JJ Elarton) and Justis McCowan (escorted by Austin Gilson), and exchange student Rebecca Rosenberger (escorted by Garrett Smith). Front row freshman court member Allie Kaiser (escorted by Anthony Thomas), sophomore Marlee Blaker (escorted by Nate Elarton) and junior Cheyenne Stone (escorted by Dominick Sell).
  • Front.park.lights
    GETTING READY—Jerad Gleckler pounds nails to secure a string of holiday lights on the side of the Wakefield Park concession stand while other members of the Volunteer Club and others hold them in place. The volunteers showed up Sunday afternoon to string lights at the park. The decorating project will continue this Sunday. Denise Walsh is in charge of the effort this year.
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Connie Vincent publishes book of poetry 2013.01.02

Written by David Green.

p.connie vincentBy DAVID GREEN

There's a story behind every poem in Connie Vincent's book of verse titled "A Time of Truth and Trust." The book of 27 poems was just published in August—published through the insistence of her husband, Floyd, who serves as pastor of the East Chesterfield Christian and Winameg Christian churches.

Connie has written poems off and on for several years and every so often Floyd would tell her, "You should get some of these published."

Samples of her work were sent to Tate Publishing—a firm focusing on Christian themes—and the company was willing to go to press with her poems. That kicked off a 14-month process during which Connie worked with an editor, a designer, an illustrator, a marketing person and more.

"It was interesting and fun," she said. "It's a good company to work with."

She submitted two additional poems before the final closing date, including "Against All Odds," and of course there's a story behind that.

She asked Linda Bennett, owner of Books and Such Christian book store in Wauseon, if people often come in to look for poetry books. Linda gave her the bad news—no, they don't—but then she remembered an exception. Linda does have customers looking for a poem to read at mother-daughter banquets and she asked Connie if her book would have something appropriate. Connie knew it didn't.

"Well, you might want to put one in," Linda suggested, and Connie went home to think about the topic. "Against All Odds"—a poem about the challenges of motherhood and the strength gained through faith—became the very last poem she submitted for the book.

"Most of my poems have a story of one kind or another," Connie said.

The oldest poem in the book, "Fair Spring," was written in the 1960s for her grandfather's birthday. The line "Heaven is Not Silent" became the title of a poem long before the verse was written.

"It was in my mind," she said. "Then I had to figure out the poem."

"Our Time" is a poem written to be read aloud. It was created for a talent night program. "Mission Ward" was written for a church assembly in 2010, and it was also put to music.

A personal poem, "Grieving," written for some members of her husband's family, was included in the volume only because she thought it might be of help to others in a similar situation.

The most unique poem in the book, called "The Truth about Vivian Ruth," is an imagined story stemming from a real situation. When Connie was growing up in Massachusetts, she lived near the Quabbin Reservoir that eventually covered four small towns as it grew. In the poem, Connie imagines a school girl who moved from the flooded area to the Midwest, and brought with her a sadness that no one understood.

Connie might be thought of as an unlikely poet because she never had a strong interest in poetry. Even now when she goes into a bookstore, she seldom heads for the poetry section. She does have some anthologies of well-known poets which she enjoys. Those are the poets who are really good, she says.

She describes herself as a writer who can't spell. When she puts words to paper, she has a dictionary close at hand, along with a thesaurus and a rhyming dictionary.

The Bible—her number one source—is also nearby.

"I'm always looking up something to see if it's scriptural," she said.

Many of her poems are followed by a reference to a Bible verse—words that could provide additional inspiration.

"Sometimes it's just to prove a point, to show it actually does say something like that in the Bible."

Her words sometimes marvel at the wonders of nature, sometimes address aging—"You can tell I'm obsessed by time as I get older"—and many speak to the challenges of life, from the loss of a friend to financial difficulty, from a struggling single mother to worry over the condition of the country.

Connie is still writing poetry although she doesn't know if she will go through the publishing process again. If anything, she might collect the poems she's written for children for a second book of verse.

For now she'll continue focusing on her current volume and she knows it's time to put in a new order following Christmas sales. She'll be satisfied if more readers find comfort and encouragement through their spiritual faith as they read her book.

"Hopefully the poems will speak to someone other than me," she said.

• Connie Vincent’s “A Time of Truth and Trust” is available at To order a copy from her, write to [email protected]

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