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Happy news

Happy news Happy news

Every week, The Star News runs the “Where Am I in Taylor County” feature.

It is a bit of light-hearted fun in the paper each week, asking people to identify some landmark or location in the county. Sometimes the pictures are easy ones to identify such as the copper-colored dome of the courthouse. Others are more challenging, or force us to alter our perspective as we look at the world through a different angle.

Whether the pictures are of chainsaws stuck into tree stumps, old-school playground equipment in local parks, or funky birdhouses along a rustic highway, the pictures all show glimpses of Taylor County.

Just like samples you get at the grocery store, the pictures are intended to offer a taste of what the county has to offer. The hope is that people will see them and start exploring on their own and realize what a cool place we are all lucky enough to call home.

In every case, there is a story behind the picture. Whether it is remembering being a child and climbing to the top of the playground equipment on a bright summer day or a glimpse into a decades-long prank war between elderly siblings turning bathroom fixtures into garden ornaments, every picture has its own story.

My wife and I were driving home from getting pictures of the newly relocated glacial spring outlet at Mondeaux Flowage. As with the rest of the Mondeaux recreation area renovation project, I am eagerly awaiting this to be completed. It will be much more convenient and safer for people to fill up jugs without having to climb steps built into the side of a steep hill. I had driven up to the spring to get pictures for the paper of it reopening, and my wife, Kim, came along to keep me company and escape from our children for a while.

Kim was the one to spot the little yellow Minion figure standing on a tree stump and pointed it out to me. I found a spot to turn around and came back and snapped the picture of it thinking it would be a great “Where in Taylor County Am I” photo.

After it ran in last week’s issue of The Star News, I got a call from Mary Lamberty about her yard decoration that she was surprised to see made the paper.

According to Lamberty, the stump the Minion is standing on was dug out of the yard of her 90-year-old neighbor Leon. Lamberty agreed to having the stump placed in her yard at Halloween. It provided a great location to place the Minion that was made by her eight and nine-year-old great grandchildren Sophie and Amelia. Its body is made from an old pressure tank that you would have as part of a well system and the hat is a milk can cover.

Often the pages of The Star News, and other big and small newspapers around the country, are filled with not so good news as they report on the happenings of their communities.

It is always good to be able to share a happy story. Anyone with children can picture two children happily transforming an old tank into a cartoon character and that image is enough to brighten even the most curmudgeonly Scrooge’s day.

While these happy stories are good to share all year long, they are especially important this time of year as the holiday season brings with it challenges for many people, especially those who are living with loss. This is further aggravated this year with the ongoing pandemic and not being able to gather with friends and family as in the past. Even the normal bright spot of student Christmas concerts has been altered by COVID-19.

As we struggle together through the gray days of December, be sure to share your good news stories with us and we will be happy to share those stories with all of our readers.

Brian Wilson is News Editor at The Star News.