September 16, 2009 Edition

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Frankly
Speaking...

John Bland
Publisher

It was an eye-opening experience to tour the campus of Black River Technical College in Pocahontas. I thank Dr. Jan Ziegler and new board member Sue Gibson for the tour and also Richard Gaines, Vickie French and Ruth Ann Ellis for their time.

Everywhere we went on campus, we saw familiar faces of present and former Lawrence Countians, such as staffers Dina Hufstedler and Tom Baker and numerous students who are recent grads of our local high schools.

We had visited the Randolph County Development Center several times, but I had been in the administration building only one other time. The campus is really pretty, both buildings and landscaping. The year-old Business Technology Center would impress anyone. Another notable aspect of the campus is its size. While many students probably spend most of their time in the buildings that contain their area of study, we walked quite a distance on campus visiting not all, but many, of the buildings.

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There are at least a dozen Walnut Ridge High School Bobcat football players who do double duty on Friday nights. I don't mean playing both offensive and defensive teams, but playing on the football team and then performing with the PRIDE marching band at halftime. These are not team members who stay on the sidelines, but players who spend a lot of time on the field.

I see it as an advantage of small schools that these athlete-musicians get to do both. They are needed on both the team and in the band, even though they may be gulping for air as they play their horns, having very little time to make the transition. It is a tribute to Larry Treadway, head football coach, and John Long, band director, that they are able to work together in the best interest of the students.

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We have had many reports of people having fevers, colds, aches and pains. It does seem early for the flu and cold season, but our late summer weather has been more like that of autumn.

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I am reading a book called "Getting Things Done" by David Allen. I'll let you know in a few weeks if it helps me clean off my desk and backlog of undone "things to do."

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