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

  • Front.sculpt
    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.

Digital signals to take over TV broadcasting 3.12

Written by David Green.

The year-long countdown is underway. Beginning next Feb. 17, your old analog television set will produce nothing but static.

But don’t let an electronics store salesperson talk you into a new television because the chances are good that you won’t need it.

Next February, television signals change from the existing analog format to digital. Anyone with cable or satellite service won’t be affected by the changeover. Only those who still rely on an antenna will have to make a change, unless their TV has a built-in digital tuner. TVs sold in the last four years are likely to have a digital tuner.

Rather than pitch your television, head for an appliance store to buy a digital converter box. It’s a small device about the size of a hardcover book. Attach your antenna cable to the box and the box’s outgoing cable to your television. The picture is restored.

Converter boxes are selling for around $50 and the price gets much cheaper with a $40 coupon from the federal government. Don’t order a coupon until you’re ready to buy since they’re only good for 90 days after being issued.

There are three major reasons for the change to digital signals. Digital programming can offer a sharper image and better sound, it will give viewers more options and it frees up airwaves for increased use by emergency responders.

Don’t think you’re going to get a high-definition picture simply by buying a converter box. All hi-def programming is digital, but not all digital programming is hi-def. Besides, it takes a high-definition TV set to make the difference. Still, users of antennae should expect to see an image that’s as clear as from cable service—at least in most cases. Time will tell if there are unforeseen problems.

Local broadcasters are likely to offer an additional channel or more. For example, Channel 13 provides the regular programming you’ve had for years. Channel 13.1 might be a special weather channel.

Owners of older television sets have a choice to make: Continue use via a converter box until the set breaks or take a step into contemporary programming and splurge for a high-definition set.

If you’re reading this March 12, you have 342 days to make your decision.

• Order a coupon on-line by visiting or call 1-888-388-2009.

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