A rose to all of the home owners without whom The Columbus Pilgrimage would be reduced to a handful of folks staring at our majestic old homes from the sidewalk.
The 77th Columbus Pilgrimage concluded Saturday and featured 11 historic homes, two churches and a garden. For the property owners, it is not simply a matter of flinging open their doors and saying, “Come on in!”
Owners spend weeks preparing their homes and grounds for visitors, arranging for tour guides and hosts, planning the scripts for tours and countless other details needed to make the tours a success.
Each year, the Pilgrimage is touted as one of the top events not only in the state, but in the South.
Certainly, our Convention and Visitors Bureau staff and volunteers deserve much credit. But they would be the first to say that their work would be of no avail without the hospitality of the home owners who open their doors to the thousands of visitors who attend the event each year. Well done. And Thanks!
A rose to Starkville’s big weekend and all those whose work and participation make it truly special. Saturday’s annual Cotton District Arts Festival, along with Mississippi State’s Super Bulldog Weekend, again drew thousands of art lovers and sports fans to Starkville under picture-perfect skies.
The Festival, which has been rated as one of the top five festivals in the state for the four years, featured more than 125 artisans, a juried art competition and show, the “Taste of Starkville” restaurant competition and lots and lots of music. Next door on the MSU campus, sports fans had their pick of events, including the annual MSU spring football game and Game 2 of MSU’s baseball series against Kentucky.
The two events complement each other nicely and provide an array of entertainment options that few places can match.
A rose to Columbus city council members Marty Turner, Stephen Jones and Bill Gavin, who are advocating for additional hires for the Columbus Police Department’s crime lab. Each year, the city budgets for more police officers than it can reasonable expect to hire.
Recruiting and training officers is often a time-consuming process. Rather than let those funds remain unused, the three councilmen favor using some of those funds to hire two additional crime lab specialists.
We like the idea.
Because the city’s crime lab performs investigative work for 11 outside agencies, producing up to $70,000 in income for the city, crime lab personnel are probably the most cost-effective employees on the city’s payroll. And while these scientists may not wear a badge or carry a gun, their contributions to fighting crime is as important as any position in law enforcement. Adding two positions will expedite investigations and aid the criminal justice process from beginning to end. We heartily approve of this proposal.
A rose to the Columbus Police Department officers, sponsors and all those who bought raffle tickets to raise money for a very worthy cause.
The raffle, which included donated prizes from Lowe’s, Rusty Gunz gun shop, an anonymous jeweler and MugShots restaurant, raised $22,200, exceeding the goal of $20,000.
The money will aid the family of part-time CPD officer Kenny Brewer, whose 10-month old daughter, Kensley, is fighting cancer and is currently hospitalized at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis.
Even though St. Jude offers its treatment free of charge, many other expenses are not covered. A serious illness can be overwhelming, so the money raised will go a long way in helping the family through this difficult ordeal.
The outpouring of support from his fellow officers and the community at large again remind us of why Columbus is not just “The Friendly City” in name, but also in deed and, in this case, in need.
The Dispatch Editorial Board is made up of publisher Peter Imes, columnist Slim Smith, managing editor Zack Plair and senior newsroom staff.