‘Big Box’ a helpful gathering

If you missed the big event?Thinking Outside of the Big Box?do not despair. Although it was a terrific event in person, you can still catch it on MC20-TV and online. The Free Press will notify you when the recorded version is available to watch on cable or online.

Gene Winkler, of Marion, came over to the Rehearsal Hall at Tabor College and videoed the meeting. He will segment each presentation as a separate video. The presenters did an excellent job and were professional in every possible way.

Roger Holter, Marion?s city administrator, kicked off the event with an excellent explanation of how the big box stores work based on his many years of experience in that industry.

Marci Penner of the Kan?sas Sampler Foundation gave her presentation of the ?8 Must Do?s? for small businesses in Kansas. She offered lots of great advice for small businesses to put into their playbooks.

Then the keynote speaker, Tim Smith from Allentown, Pa., who is a national consultant and has worked with major entities including the Pentagon, Home Depot and a host of others, was on his ?A? game with his presentation that capped the evening.

Tim was in Marion County the entire week and met face-to-face with about a dozen business owners in Hillsboro and Marion.

In my opinion, it was the right event at the right time.


My medical alert chain has broken so many times during the past 10 years that it almost was getting too short to wear. The chain is the kind that is used for pull chains on light fixtures. It can be fixed by connecting to the chain that is left after each break. Now I have a different chain that is continuous and hopefully will last much longer.

The reason I wear it is because of bad reactions to certain drugs, and with all of the blood thinners I take, I want medical personnel to be aware that if I am in an accident and can?t tell them my medical history, they will know I could be bleeding to death internally.


It is becoming clear to me why people retire. It is so they have enough time to go to all of their doctor ap?point?ments.


We had the opportunity to go see the KU?Jayhawks play UNLV recently. I was offered some free tickets, so I took advantage.

I had forgotten how loud it gets in Allen Field House, but was quickly reminded. One thing I hadn?t forgotten is that many people stand during the entire game, at least while there is action on the floor.

It is a bit annoying for many people, but what are you going to do but stand up too?


One thing I learned at the Thinking Outside of the Big Box event was that a store here in town sells Canadian coffee. You?ll have to watch the videos to find out where. It will surprise you.

If you wish to share your comments or ideas, my e-mail address is joel@

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