From the Mayor 10/19/16

Reprinted with permission of the Independence Daily Reporter

As usual, there’s too much going on to keep up with…

Flying High! Tickets are selling fast for the Neewollah musical, The Little Mermaid. I don’t know if we’ve had past productions where the characters were flying above the stage, but they’re doing it this time. Seriously, you don’t want to miss it. The Neewollah headquarters in the old J.C. Penney building are now open on weekdays from 10:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. and on Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Get your tickets now, before they’re sold out, and get ready to enjoy the entire celebration.

City Wide Cleanup. Once again, our city-wide cleanup was a great success. A total of 217 vehicles stopped by to unload trash after cleaning up their homes and property. Thanks to everyone who participated, and thanks especially to the city staff and many volunteers for their generous help in making it all work.

Drive-By Flu Shots. What better way to get your flu shot than in the comfort of your own car with tunes blaring? And best of all, it’s absolutely free. This amazing event, sponsored by First Presbyterian Church and the Lion’s Club, will take place on November 5th - rain or shine - on the Oval at Riverside Park. Please call Susie Kleinbeck at 332-4011 if you have questions.

Zoolloween. If you missed this event, you missed a great time. More than 40 High School students helped out, dressing up as zombies, mummies, witches, and other suitably engaging characters. An estimated 1,200 kids participated. Many thanks to our amazing zoo staff, volunteers and 23 generous sponsors for making it an evening to remember.

Downtown Cleanup. Thanks again to everyone that helped out with the Downtown cleanup last Saturday, and especially to Jim Kelly for organizing the whole event. The students from IHS and ICC really turned out, there must have been at least a hundred people there helping. Annie and I are still aching from all the bending over to pick up trash. I can’t say that it was the most fun that we’ve ever had on a Saturday morning, but it was so satisfying to see our downtown shine.

Flex Your Spelling Muscles. Mark your calendar now to reserve Saturday evening, November 19th for this fun event, sponsored by our Award Winning library. Unlike the spelling bees of old (which you dreaded) this fundraiser will be great fun. The event will be held at the Booth Hotel, teams will consist of eight people, and it will be a good time even if you’re a lousy speller. Space is limited, so get your tickets at the library now before they sell out. The cost is $25 per person, or $175 to reserve a table of eight.

Fly Like an Eagle. Our wonderful park is enjoying several new improvements thanks to the efforts of three Boy Scouts, Adam Hayse, Jacob Green and Rich Garris. The three have been working on projects in the ravine area to satisfy their Eagle Scout project requirements. The Eagle project requires that they show their leadership skills by planning and organizing the project and supervising the work. Jacob fixed up the bridge along the walkway, and Adam tore out and rebuilt the fencing along the path to the bear pens. They have had a lot of help from high school students, Scouts, and other volunteers, with a total of 447 hours of volunteer labor. Rich has not finished his project yet but he is making new signs for the displays in that area; he is also using the Fab Lab at ICC to help with his project. FORPAZ has helped pay for the projects and they are getting a lot of support from Woods Lumber and Ready Mix and the park employees. It is amazing what can be accomplished when a crowd of people pitch in to help.

As I’ve said over and over: Independence is a wonderful town with thousands of great folks who are working hard to make it even better!

Mayor Gary Hogsett