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Out and About – Week of May 12th

The “Snowbirds” have returned to “Pure Michigan”. A week or so ago, we decided to visit one of our favorite hometown restaurants. Located a stone’s throw away from the Wood Street Dam, it’s been a gathering place for many of the locals for over fifty years. On this particular Friday evening, we thought we’d go and join many other fish fans for their all-you-can-eat fish dinners. As we entered through the back door, we found the place packed with Snowbirds. It was evident that they had not spent the last several months here, because they had very nice tans and were having a great time visiting with each other. I’m sure many of them thought that they had returned too early.

I’m a people watcher, so I was in my glory just observing everyone. It was great to see everyone becoming reacquainted because, even though they had spent the winter months in Florida, they had probably been spread out throughout the state. It was like a fifty-year class reunion. The patrons would eat, then visit other tables filled with senior citizens.

A friend of mine came in alone and sat down at one of the larger tables, because there just wasn’t another table available. The waitress approached him and asked if it would be okay for others to sit with him and share the space. “Of course,” he said, “there just wasn’t any place else to sit, and I don’t bite, so bring them on.” It wasn’t long before that larger table was filled with other patrons. My friend, who is normally quite shy, was soon enjoying some great conversation. He was wearing his Marine Corps cap, which showed that he served in the Corps during the Vietnam era, so that opened a new line of conversation. We didn’t wait around too long after eating our meal, because there were people waiting for a place to sit. I’m sure the Snowbirds were made to feel welcome and were glad to be back. I’m waiting for a shuffleboard court to open near the restaurant.

The first weekend of this month, the Three Rivers Lions were out seeking donations for their White Cane Days. The weather could have been better May 2 and 3, but the spirit of giving was top notch. The donations received will go a long way in assisting those in need of eyeglasses. The Lions thank you for your generosity. If you have used eyeglasses, and would like to properly dispose of them, you may drop them off at Lowry’s Books, the lobby at City Hall, the Specialty Clinic at TR Health, Fred’s Pharmacy, the TR Community Center, Sussex Vision, or at the Lions office upstairs at LA’s Coffee Cafe. The eyeglasses will be cleaned and checked and dispensed to those in need.

I’m changing my format just a little bit again. I am very fortunate in being able to get Out and About and visit many of the activities around St. Joe County and beyond. Being retired now, I have more time to do things that I really enjoy, so I’ve decided to share some of these experiences with you. I’m a very big supporter of volunteering, and I spend most of my time doing just that. The pay isn’t the greatest, but the satisfaction that comes from helping those in need cannot be beat. If you’re planning a fundraising dinner, or another activity that you’d like others to know about, I’m afraid I can’t help you out like I used to. Please keep me advised of these activities, and I’ll do my best to attend them and then let everyone know how much fun I had. I would suggest that you use this newspaper, the local radio station, and community bulletin boards to advertise your event. This newspaper is always looking for an exciting event. They might even provide someone to cover your story, complete with photos. Channel 3 News knows the way to Three Rivers, but it has to be something quite spectacular for them to travel twenty miles south.

Three Rivers is a very nice community, but it does have its problems like every community in this great country of ours. It’s up to all of us to work together and get rid of the problems. Together we can do more.

See you Out and About!

Submitted by Norm Stutesman