— By SHARRON HUDSON
MILLSAP – What a great time of year with so many worthwhile events taking place.
This past week was recognized nationally as Red Ribbon Week, and Millsap schools participated in a number of ways.
This preventative awareness campaign was begun on a grassroots level in Calexico, Calif., to honor DEA agent Enrique Camarena, who was murdered in the line of duty. The people of his town honored his memory by donning red ribbons. From this event the red ribbon became a symbol for prevention to reduce the demand for illegal drugs.
Eventually there emerged the Red Ribbon Week campaign as a nationwide service effort. The campaign focuses awareness on the damage that alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs can do, as well as, how greatly violence impacts lives.
Approximately 80 million people participate in the initiative every year. The week was set aside for Millsap students to take a time each day to focus on the anti-drug message. Teachers spoke about how making good choices in their lives helped them succeed in their careers.
There were various themes each of the days always emphasizing the Red Ribbon message. Each elementary class made a red ribbon chain and these were all linked together to represent a drug-free school. Our school district always does a fantastic job of presenting this life impacting message in a fun, positive way so the kids will be more likely to take it to heart.
Our community is coming together with many plans for the Annual Millsap VFD Turkey Dinner. This will take place Nov. 10 and Millsap ISD has graciously agreed to again host it in the elementary school’s cafetorium. The VFD is excited to have many local groups and organizations participating and a new trail has been blazed by making it a community event. There will be a dessert contest, and after the judging the sweets will be auctioned off with the proceeds benefiting the organizations that are involved in the dinner. The time is 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. and the meal will include the turkey with all of the traditional trimmings, plus this will be a great time of visiting and fun! This is one of the biggest turnouts of the year around here, so plan on coming and being a part of this worthwhile effort.
As reported in major area newspapers, the new home of American Legion Post 163 was celebrated with an open house and dedication on Friday evening, Oct. 25. While the post’s new facility is located off Cartwright Road in Weatherford some of the members of this group come from Millsap, Mineral Wells and other surrounding communities. The open house was the kickoff for the 17th district convention, with this district having 19 posts. The district commander is Brett Watson, who is also an officer of Post 163.
The highlight of Saturday was the speech given by guest speaker Jim Messenger, who is a member of Mineral Wells American Legion Post 75, and is very dedicated to improving and maintaining the local National Vietnam War Museum.
Last Sunday a memorial service was held honoring deceased Legionnaires. The service was conducted by Chaplain Larry Baird. During the three day event much business, visiting, and reminiscing was done and it was a great time for these dedicated men. Congratulations on a well-deserved new home, Post 163.
As we live in a town where trains come through daily, there are aspects of the railroad that it is good to stay aware of. Union Pacific has a big campaign of public safety in regards to trains. Their billboard campaign is themed to “always expect a train,” and there is current emphasis on warning hunters not to be drawn toward railroad tracks. As there are many fields parallel to tracks hunters may tend to want to walk or hunt too close to the tracks. Some hikers, bikers, and fishermen may also get too close to these areas.
People tend to think they can get out of the way if a train is coming, however the cars and locomotive overhang the tracks by at least three feet on either side. With the average train speed 26.3 miles per hour, moving out of the path proves more difficult than it would seem. It takes a train more than a mile to stop.
According to the Federal Railroad Administration, last year 433 people died and 411 were injured in the U.S. while trespassing on railroad property. As trains come through Millsap and the surrounding areas all of the time, please do not become comfortable around the tracks – stay safe.
With Millsap’s annual Christmas tree lighting a little over a month away, it’s time to start making plans for being a part of this special time on Dec. 14. A crafts bazaar will be set up at Heritage Park from 10 a.m. till dark. The booth rental fee is $10 (no electricity) or $15 (with electricity).
For the chili cook-off entries need to be at city hall by 3:30 p.m. and judging will be at 4 p.m. with prizes awarded. The parade will start at 5 p.m. and is open to all Millsap ISD campuses and to any other groups and organizations.
After the parade refreshments of complimentary hot dogs, chili, cookies and drinks will be served at city hall. Along with the lighting of the Christmas tree there will be visits and photos with Mr. and Mrs. Claus at the log cabins.
For any questions call Mark Barnes at 940-682-7446. This is going to be a wonderful part of the Christmas season, compliments of the City of Millsap and many are looking forward to it.
The Millsap Cemetery Association will hold its annual meeting Nov. 3 at 2 p.m. at the cemetery. In case of inclement weather the meeting will be at Millsap City Hall.
Tuesday is Election Day. There will be voting at Millsap Community Center, 7 a.m.-7 p.m.
Daylight savings time ended Sunday morning. If you haven’t changed those clocks you better do it, and thanks for reading!
Send Millsap-area news to SharronHudson at firstname.lastname@example.org.