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Editorial: Applause / A Pause


This is a monthly feature of our Columns & Commentary page, in which we either applaud a person, group or event for something positive that we feel is worthy of a little credit (Applause), and/or address something that gives us pause; something that we feel deserves to be addressed in a public forum like the newspaper (A Pause). We welcome rebuttals and feedback. Applause / A Pause expresses the collective opinions of the Perham Focus editorial staff.

APPLAUSE to the creators and supporters of the Perham mural project. Coming soon to the Photo Magic building’s east-facing wall, the carved concrete mural is sure to liven things up at the corner of First and Main, adding a touch of artistic flair and lakes-themed distinction to downtown. We can’t wait to see it.

A PAUSE to the thief (or thieves) who stole a refrigerator from behind Boedy Appliance, only to have it, presumably, fall off the truck or trailer it didn’t get strapped on to. The fridge was found on the side of the road not far from Perham just 30 minutes later. Sounds like an episode of “America’s Dumbest Criminals.”

APPLAUSE to all of our Class of 2014 graduates. You’ve worked hard for your achievements; best of luck to you as you go out into the world and make it your own.

APPLAUSE to everyone who participated in or attended area Memorial Day services. On a long weekend, especially one as nice as we had this year, it can be tough to tear ourselves away from the lake, barbecues, family time, gardening or whatever other activities usually occupy our time on a sunny summer day. But it’s crucial to remember and honor the biggest reason why we are able to do those things we love to do, and to remember that those freedoms did not come free.

APPLAUSE to local ‘motorheads’ and classic car enthusiasts for not settling for less. Shortly after the local car club announced it would not be holding a car show this summer, two new, similar events sprang up in its place: the Perham Classic Cruise-Ins and Hot Rod Hangouts. Both these monthly events offer owners of unique or classic cars and motorcycles regular opportunities to come together, grab a bite to eat and talk some shop, all summer long.

A PAUSE to vandalism at our schools. In the most recent example, Perham High School was spray painted with obscenities last week. About a month earlier, vandals broke windows and slashed screens at St. Henry’s Area School, the second vandalism episode at that school within the past year. As a result, both schools are considering installing security cameras to monitor activity outside.

APPLAUSE to community leaders in and around Otter Tail County for coming together to address housing needs, one of the most pressing matters in the county today. With housing costs up and incomes down, people are often spending more than 30 percent of their take-home pay on housing. It’s encouraging that community leaders are pulling together to develop a plan to better meet the needs of renters or potential homeowners. Representatives from the private and public sectors, as well as non-profit organizations, gathered in Fergus Falls in mid-May to address the issue. We hope these talks are just the beginning of a process that will generate not just some good ideas, but actions.