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From the editor’s desk

Published: Monday, July 8, 2013 3:16 p.m. CDT

Patriotism rang through the area last week, as we celebrated another Fourth of July. I hope you had the opportunity to spend some time with family and friends during the holiday. It’s not often the newspaper’s editorial department gets a holiday off, so this was especially sweet!

There were some wonderful fireworks displays throughout the area. I hope you had the chance to attend at least one of these events. While there is always talk from those who wish the fireworks shows were bigger and longer, there is a remedy to that situation. It’s called opening your wallet and donating to the cause. As we all know, a fireworks display is not a cheap endeavor, so if you’d like to see bigger and better shows, you can always help financially.

On the flip side of the fireworks coin, please take a moment to thank the folks who orchestrated/sponsored your local fireworks event. It takes a lot of time, energy and money to pull this festive and patriotic display off, and they deserve a pat on the back. On behalf of the Bureau County Republican, please know we appreciate your efforts.

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Have you picked up your copy of our increasingly-popular Illinois Valley Living magazine yet? If not, you’ll want to get one soon. This Summer 2013 edition is jam-packed with stories about the people, places and things that make the Illinois Valley a special place to live. We’re already working on our fall edition, so if you have any story ideas, please feel free to send me an email at tsimon@bcrnews.com.

One thing to note in our summer edition, is our new Women of Distinction Award. Illinois Valley Living is asking you to nominate a woman from the Illinois Valley who goes the extra mile to enhance the life of others in our area. You can find a nomination form in the magazine or online at www.iilinoisvalleyliving.com. The deadline to nominate someone is 5 p.m. Aug. 1.

After all the nominations are received, a panel of women from outside the area will select those Women of Distinction to be honored at a special luncheon on Oct. 17 at Deer Park Country Club in Oglesby. It will be a great event with lunch, speakers, special awards and great give-aways — all to honor the wonderful women in the area who make a difference. Give me a call at 815-875-4461, ext. 229, or email me at tsimon@bcrnews.com if you have any questions.

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How does your garden grow? While I haven’t picked anything out of my garden yet, it’s looking great. The Napa cabbage is almost ready, and it won’t be long for the cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes and eggplants. This is just an idea, but if you find yourself with produce to spare, remember your local food pantries. Most of them accept fresh produce, and I guarantee there are folks who use those services who would enjoy the fruits (and vegetables) of your labor. Also, don’t forget your older neighbors and friends who might not be able to get out in the garden. I’m sure they would appreciate it too. For me, part of the fun of gardening is sharing with others.

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Have you had time this summer to sit on the front porch, the backyard deck, the patio? If not, try to carve out some time to do so. We’ve become a nation who pulls the shades, locks the doors and turns on the computer or the TV. What if we turned off the TV/computer, unlocked the doors, refused to pull down the shades and decided to spend our summer evenings outside, while being serenaded by the crickets? Sounds just about perfect to me.

Thought for the day: “The best kind of friend is the one you could sit on a porch with, never saying a word, and walk away feeling like that was the best conversation you’ve had.” Anonymous.

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Have a great week. And remember ... you are important to me and the BCR.

BCR Editor Terri Simon can be reached at tsimon@bcrnews.com.

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