Thumbs Up/Down - September 7, 2012Thumbs Up: Garden Center in Alexandria earned a “thumbs up” from an Alexandria parent for returning its “Kids Bowl Free” program this summer.
Thumbs Down: A Vietnam veteran in Miltona called us about a sad situation that’s been happening in the town this summer at the veterans memorial on Main Street. He said that kids on bicycles, four-wheelers and scooters have been tearing up the gravel by the memorial and leaving rubber tire marks on the white cement. “Don’t people have any respect?” the veteran asked. “Parents should tell their kids to have some respect for the veterans.”
An unexpected treat
Thumbs Up: The Alexandria Police Department received a thumbs up from a grateful local couple, the Rev. Tenner and Roma Thompson. Their five grandchildren came from Germany and Spokane, Washington to visit them this summer and one of the highlights of their time here was a friendly interaction with the police department. “The children were given Dairy Queen coupons for ice cream cones, acknowledging that they were wearing helmets while riding their bikes,” said the Thompsons. “They had their picture taken with the officer.”
Risking a pet’s life
Thumbs Down: Although summer is slowly slipping away, there are still days when it’s too hot to leave your dog inside your vehicle. Just last week, Alexandria police were called to a parking lot where someone had left their dog in the car when temperatures were in the 90s. If the windows are rolled up, the temperature inside a vehicle can quickly climb to temperatures that are 20 degrees hotter than outside. Even with the windows cracked, the temperatures can be life-threatening to a dog. Think of your car as an oven and keep your pet out of it.
Community Connect clicks
Thumbs Up: The United Way Community Connect was a roaring success. That’s from the viewpoint of one of the many volunteers. She gave a big thank you to all the agencies that were represented at the August 30 event, which helped people of all ages find the local resources and services they needed. “The Salvation Army served a great lunch,” the volunteer said. “There was even ice cream, thanks to Douglas County and the Dairy Association. The backpack distribution was a highlight of the day. This event gets bigger all the time.” She urged others to donate time to the community. “Volunteering is a blast! You should try it sometime.”
Trooper to the rescue
Thumbs Up: A traveler returning to Ontario from Cold Lake, Alberta, had kind words to say about state troopers after he got a flat tire on Interstate 94 near Alexandria. A State Patrol sergeant assisted him after completing another duty, even offering to help change the tire. “Regrettably, I had no jack,” the traveler said. “He then summoned AAA, which was on the scene in less than 15 minutes. Meanwhile the sergeant parked on the shoulder a distance behind, lights flashing, until the tire was changed, to ensure our safety. Those who helped would say they were just doing their job, but for me they were all a thank-you-God mercy.”
A generous gesture to kids
Thumbs Up: Garden Center in Alexandria earned a “thumbs up” from an Alexandria parent for returning its “Kids Bowl Free” program this summer. It provided two free games of bowling per school child for the summer. “What a generous and appreciated program it is,” said the parent.
Striking a chord at care centers
Thumbs Up: Those who brighten up the lives of residents at care centers don’t seek the limelight but they certainly deserve the warm glow of appreciation. Accordion player Steve Samek is one of them. He entertains residents at Windmill Ponds on a regular basis. “While so many more are needed to visit our nursing homes and assisted living facilities, great volunteers never go unnoticed,” noted a resident. “Just imagine if everyone who could play a round of checkers, read a book, play a song, or push a wheelchair around the block would take an hour a week to volunteer. What a difference it would make.”
VA clinic care
Thumbs Up:The community is fortunate to have top-notch medical services of the Max J. Beilke VA Outpatient Clinic in Alexandria. Cheryl Larson, a retired parish nurse, noted that although she’s been involved in health care for a number of years, the presence of the facility escaped her attention until a family member required services this summer. “I was very impressed with all the time, personal caring, and attention given by Andrea M. Boe, MD, Barbara Booth MS, CNS, ‘Artie,’ RN, and other staff members before and following my brother’s recent surgery,” she said. “I feel very proud of our veterans’ medical/healthcare services offered in Alexandria and want others to know about their availability. A big thank you to all who have worked so hard in making this clinic a reality, and to Ray Kallstrom, our veterans service officer, for coordinating services.”