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

  • Snow.2
    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.
  • Front.tar.wide
    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.
  • Front.pull
    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.
  • Front.ropes
    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.
  • Front.homecoming Court
    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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Big Brothers Big Sisters: e-Mail buddies meet for the first time 5.7.07

Written by David Green.


When eight Morenci Area High School seniors walked onto a school bus Thursday morning to greet a group of younger students, it was a meeting of old friends.

Except there was that one odd twist—they had never before laid eyes on one  another.

This was the meeting of the Bigs and the Littles—a group of high school volunteers and their pen pals from elementary school.big.little

The two parties had been corresponding by e-mail since late October; now it was finally time to get together for a picnic at Wakefield Park.

Five students from Adrian’s Michener Elementary School signed up for the e-Mail Buddy program through the Lenawee County Big Brother-Big Sister organization, along with six from Sand Creek.

Program coordinator Bob Dister could sense the anticipation among the youngsters as the high school students entered the bus.

One by one, a name was called and a hand shot up in recognition. Seating was soon rearranged so the Bigs and the Littles could sit together for the trip to the park.

Before the short journey ended, Dister could hear conversations developing as the two groups updated one another on their lives.

At the park, it was nothing but fun, lunch and more fun as the two groups mixed on the playground equipment.

Sixth year

The current school year marks the sixth season for the successful e-Mail Buddy program.

Throughout the school year, the younger students typically wrote a letter on a Tuesday and sent it on to their older correspondent. The high school student wrote a response which was printed and given to the younger person on Friday.

“The correspondence is all supervised,” Dister said. “Every e-mail is read in our office.”

It’s more than just a social program for the third grade students, he said. At the start of the program, students wrote their letters on paper and handed them in for their teacher to type. Before too long, the students were learning to type their own letters on a computer.

The program addresses general language arts skills, too, as sentence structure and grammar improves through the year.

There’s a little geography thrown into the mix when a Big tells a Little about a trip to Florida or a sports competition in Detroit.

This was the first year in the program for Sand Creek teacher Kathie Norton-McCallister and Dister knows it translated into extra work for her. It also produced some positive results.

“My students enjoyed having a connection with these older students,” she said. “They were able to hear about their activities as high schoolers and the plans they have for after graduation.”

There’s also an early link made between Sand Creek and Morenci—the traditional rivals on the athletic field.

“I feel that making connections between area school districts is important to our community,” she said.

Dister hopes she elects to participate again next year and he would like to see her entire class join in rather than just half a dozen students.

If that happens, next year’s picnic could become a gala event.

• Participating in the program from Morenci were National Honor Society students Tiffany Wilson, Nick Vehemier, Riley Miller, Ryan Lucas, Zac Johnson, Maddie Green, Sarah Garwood and Dominique Cox. Kaliegh Robichaud and Adriane Bernotas of Sand Creek also participated.

    – May 9, 2007 


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