Articles By: Joel Klaassen

Hospital news is big news here

The biggest news to hit town in a long while was the announce?ment of a brand-new hospital for our community. Even bigger news is that it will be on the tax roll and not subsidized by anyone except its users, which are expected to increase dramatically when it is up and running.

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Epic crash occurred 30 years ago

Thirty years ago this week a tragedy occurred at the Hillsboro airport that is permanently etched in the minds of those who were living here at the time, including mine.

It was Tuesday, June 20, 1978, when Hillsboro businessman and pilot Paul Rundstrom, 40, and his passengers Dennis Klassen and Blaine Briggs of Hillsboro Industries and Hillsboro Distributors crashed into a wheat field shortly after 8 a.m. just south of the hedge row opening at the then grass airstrip.

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‘Railroad’ a big hit for Marion

I?m not as familiar with Grand Funk Railroad as some of the other bands back in the day, but the verdict is in: The headliner concert at this year?s Chingawassa Days in Marion was another big hit, according to people with whom I spoke. I overheard law enforcement estimating the crowd at 1,800 to 2,000.

When GFR turned on its amps I about jumped out of my seat. The volume was working. Very well.

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Find every way to save gasoline

Hypermiling might be a new trend in driving with the high gas prices we
now have?prices that probably won?t be going down anytime soon.

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Reunion was great once again

The Hills?boro High School all-school reunion Saturday night was another blast. Max Hein?richs, who will become the new HHS principal in a few weeks, was the emcee and did a marvelous job hosting the event.

The food was great, the crowd was larger than last year and some of the stories were just plain hilarious.

It appears we don?t really get interested in coming back to a class reunion until about 20 years out, which has been the case for the past several years.

Mark your calendars for May 23, 2009, which is the date for the next all-school reunion at ?dear old Hillsboro High.?

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McMillen a model of endurance

Our coaches used to tell us to get in shape for sports. Getting in shape is a relative term. I witnessed what getting shape really means this past Friday at the regional track meet in Marion.

Senior distance runner Cody McMillen qualified for four events at the state track meet this coming weekend in Wichita by running 800 meters, then 1,600 meters, then 3,200 meters followed by 400 meters?all within four hours. The 4×400, relay which was his last event, came about 15 minutes after the 3,200. In that relay he took the baton in third place and brought it in first on his leg.

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President’s night was impressive

I haven?t been to many college president inaugurations in my time?in fact, I don?t recall attending any until this past Friday night.

The inauguration of Tabor College?s 13th president, Jules Glanzer, was a most impressive evening and it didn?t seem at all like it took an hour and 40 minutes.

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Deadline approaches for reunion

The deadline for making a reservation for the Hills?boro High School All School Reunion Banquet on Saturday night, May 24, is just around the bend. May 16 to be exact.

The Alumni Association committee is pleased with the re?sponse it has been getting from all over the country.

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Another trip in the whirlwind

The whirlwind continues. We headed to sunny California and Palm Springs for the annual Association of Free Community Papers convention and trade show this past week and built in a little time to see Dave and Penny and niece Whitney in Los Angeles.

This will be my third year for peddling my photobook book printing to newspapers and other publications. The publishers and other key people who attend these events are starting to recognize me and the service I offer.

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Staff birth more than Just a baby

We are beaming at the Free Press this week as Gracelyn Abigail Just was born to our features and news writer Malinda and husband Brad Just last Wednesday.

They couldn?t be prouder and we couldn?t be happier for them.

I got to see Gracelyn and even hold her. I can tell you she is Just perfect.

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