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

  • Front.cheers
    MACEE BEERS joins other Fayette Elementary School students for the annual Mini-Cheer performance during the half-time break at the basketball game.
  • Family.3.wide
    CHILDREN at Stair District Library’s Family Story Time toss scarves into the air during an activity. The evening program provided a mix of stories, songs, dancing, crafts and snacks Monday evening. The program is offered at 5:30 p.m. every Monday for five more weeks. The program is designed for three to five year olds and their family.
  • Front.newpaper.2
    THE INTERVIEW—Evelyn Joughin (right) records the interaction with an iPad while Jack Varga, next to her, asks questions of Morenci Elementary School principal Gail Frey. Morenci senior Sam Cool (standing) listens. Cool serves as the editor for the newspaper written by members of Mrs. Barrett’s second grade class.
  • Front.code.2
    WRITING CODE—Brock Christle (left), a Morenci fifth grade student, takes a look at the progress being made by fourth grader Anthony Lewis. Libby Rorick, a sixth grade student, is next in a line of girls trying out the coding tutorials. This year marked Morenci’s second year of participation in the Hour of Code project.
  • Front.gym.new
    REMIE RYAN (left) tries to dodge the foam wand held by Hayden Bays during physical education class at Morenci Elementary School. In the background, Lauryn Dominique and Brooklyn Williams stay clear of the tag. Second grade students were working on cardiovascular health on the first day back from vacation. For the record, Safety Tag is a very difficult sport to photograph.
  • 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.library.books
    MACK DICKSON takes a book off the “blind date” cart at the Fayette library. Patrons can choose a book without knowing what’s inside other than a general category. The books are among those designated for removal so patrons can consider them gifts. In Morenci, new books and staff favorites were chosen from the stacks and must be returned. Patrons get a piece of chocolate, too, to take on their date, but no clue about their “date.” One reader said she really enjoyed her book for a few pages, but then lost interest—so typical for a blind date.

Tom Springer talks at library 12.10.08

Written by David Green.

Three Rivers writer Tom Springer easily remembers the incident that led to the title of his book, “Looking for Hickories.”

He had moved to a country home, his appreciation of nature was growing, and he wanted to harvest some hickory nuts.

His search began in earnest and ended up not far from his front door. The nice, mature specimen was right there, easy to see, but he just never saw it.

The title, he says, represents “a quest to find something local that was there all the time but you never noticed it.”

“The more I looked for them,” he told an audience Thursday at Morenci’s Stair Public Library, “the more they were there.”

There was no shortage of hickory trees in his area; there had only been a shortage of finding them.

The subtitle of his book, “the Forgotten Wildness of the Rural Midwest,” was the publisher’s choice. Springer said he would have gone with this: Rediscovery in a flat and forgotten place.

People often consider this part of the nation as “fly-over country,” Springer said. You pass over it on the way to someplace beautiful and exciting, such as the Rocky Mountains, northern Michigan or the New River of West Virginia.

“There’s beauty here, too,” he said. “It needs more careful attention to discern it.”

Springer said people generally love only the things they care about, pointing to the necessity of introducing people to what’s here. Without an appreciation of the natural world, it’s easy to let it disappear.

Springer calls his speaking engagements the “Smell the Wood” tour, and he brings along a few pieces for audience members to examine and sniff, including the fragrant sassafras.

He also spoke about serviceberry, a shrub commonly used for landscaping around malls and businesses.

“What people don’t realize is that the fruit tastes really good,” Springer said. “It’s so ironic. They’re growing everywhere.”

He served a dollop of serviceberry jam on  a cracker to audience members in hopes that they, too, would learn to appreciate a bit of the wildness that’s all around them.

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