Letters (October 11, 2017)

Looking for more local events coverage

In recent weeks there have been two major events in Hillsboro. The first was the Arts and Crafts Fair, and the second was the Annual All-School Reunion.I have had the opportunity to attend both of these in recent years, and enjoyed them very much.

I grew up in Hillsboro, graduating from HHS in 1971. I still have many family and friends in the area, and subscribe to the Free Press in order to keep abreast of what’s happening there. It was very disappointing to find little or no coverage of the two events previously mentioned.

The A&C Fair had two pictures with very short captions, and the reunion was not mentioned at all, except for a few comments by Joel Klassen in his column. I think it’s important to remember that not all of your readers live in the local area, and don’t have the luxury of hearing of the details of what goes on.

I especially enjoy reading about the Reunion, recognizing the featured classes each year, hearing from the guest speakers, and seeing pictures of the individual class reunions that are held.

Overall, I think the Free Press and it’s staff do a great job of reporting the news of the area. My purpose in writing is not to criticize, but to help the staff and individual writers see their work from a broader perspective.

Thanks for the work you do.

Daryl Penner

San Jose, Calif.

Impressed with ­Takahashi’s articles

I have read the articles in the Free Press submitted by Charlotte Takahashi. These articles have given the opportunity for the voters of Hillsboro to find out what qualifications and interest she has for “stepping into the public arena” this year as a candidate for mayor of Hillsboro.

Charlotte’s extensive background in private business and the knowledge and experience she has gained will bring a resource to the city council that will be rewarding. The articles relate Charlotte’s knowledge in many areas. This knowledge is also going to be a “light” for the economic development of Marion County.

Here are the key reasons I think the voters of Hillsboro will win with Charlotte as mayor.

First, her background information shows she has given of her talents and abilities in many areas of leadership in Hillsboro and around the world. Now, by “stepping up to the plate,” she shows again to be ready to invest the time and energy necessary to be available to the residents of Hillsboro.

Charlotte is a visionary, able to understand the complex forces of change. These are the changes often overlooked or come through decisions made above the grassroots level of government. Her experiences and ability to listen and work with the council and city administrator to plan for the future will prove to be a great benefit to Hillsboro and increase the tax base of the city and county.

As an active advocate for the community of Hillsboro and Marion County, she will be able to go to Topeka and make our needs known to those making the decisions. She will use these same talents in listening to and investigating new economic development prospects.

Lastly, Charlotte’s article in last week’s Free Press (Oct. 4), was of great interest to me. Her concept of retirement in Hillsboro was “spot on.” Her evaluation of what the community has to offer and what would make the city “more inviting” was exactly what I had been finding to be true about all of Marion County.

In 2015, I saw a map representing Kansas in 2015. Counties with more than 30 percent of the population 65 years old and older were shaded red; three counties were shaded red. Marion County listed a population of 27 percent over age 65.

On the back, a map of Kansas projecting the same information for 2025 showed 30 counties shaded red. Marion County was listed with 29 percent. Kansas is going to be drastically changing. Someone in Marion County had better be planning for these retireees.

Charlotte is ready with a vision and willing to help Hillsboro and Marion County to provide the good and services for this group and the families living here.

I hope voters will continue to read these and future articles, or plan to attend a meeting where their decision as to whom is the better candidate can be made. Of course, their responsibility will come in the November election to use the information to vote and encourage others to do the same.

Mary Olsen

Peabody