Wednesday, December 7, 2011

From the House

Bluffton Today

Today is the 70th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor that precipitated our entry into the Second World War. For those who were there, or whose loved ones were there, it was the equivalent of being at ground zero New York City for the calamitous events of 9/11/01. While that war is long over and the Japanese are now our fast friends and allies, the lessons of Pearl Harbor are not to be forgotten. Constant vigilance is truly the price of liberty.

On a happier note, many congratulations to our Bluffton Bobcats football team. Going to the state championship game is something that everyone in Bluffton can be proud of. The entire season was an example of how sport is meant to be. The young men who played the games, the classy coaching staff, and the enthusiastic but well-behaved fans all deserve credit for a stellar season. In the end, we fell just short of perfection, but in all the ways that truly matter, our community is uplifted by the example set during this outstanding season. Regardless of the final score, the Bluffton Bobcats, Bluffton High, and the Bluffton community are all winners.

Another great example of the entire community pulling together for the common benefit is the fantastic 2011 Bluffton Christmas Parade. With Grand Marshal (and former mayor) Hank Johnston leading the way, the parade stepped off right on time. To the delight of the estimated crowd of 8,000 to 10,000 attendees, the two hour long parade snaked through the heart of downtown Bluffton. The dignitaries were dignified, the Marine Band was excruciatingly precise, the Shriners were rowdy and loud, and all the singing and marching children were cute beyond the dreams of their proud parents.

As one of the “dignitaries” situated in the front of the parade, I was able to make it from the disbanding site at Frazier Park back to the Promenade for the last hour and a half of this splendid event. Even for those of us a little too old for Santa Claus, there was definitely Christmas magic in the air surrounding our amazing community parade.

There was organizational magic, thanks to Sandra, Julie, Tammy and all the tireless workers at Town of Bluffton. After all the years Town Clerk Sandra Lundsford has run these parades, she can do them in her sleep.

Special thanks go to Chief Dave McAllister and his crew for the excellent manner in which the traffic was handled. The notices of road closures and car removals along the parade route were done with timeliness and tact. All the policemen not actually in the parade were in place to make sure the excitement didn’t get out of hand. They were invisible but effective. As always, their performance reflected the highest levels of professionalism.

People really understand there is something special about Bluffton. Whenever I give a speech, many of the follow-up questions have to do with how can folks become a part of the community, especially the business community. They want to know what’s the possibility of doing a live/work situation in Old Town. Right now, the Promenade is sold out-- with a waiting list. However, I have an idea for a new project that just might answer the need for affordable live/work possibilities right at the center of Old Town Bluffton. Give me a call at 757-5464. We’ll sit down with a cup of coffee and talk it over. You might be pleasantly surprised.

Finally, in this season of holiday festivities, please use common sense and appoint a designated driver. Losing a loved one is always tragic, but even more painfully so during the holidays.