Well, it’s Thanksgiving month again.
Yep, that’s right, I said it, month — not day, not week, but month.
Thanksgiving is really one of the few true holidays less commercialized and more soulful. So I’m taking it outside the day. I’m attempting to appreciate it all month long.
As I was brainstorming this column, immediately I was thankful for the boys at Perrylodgic, Randall and Jonathan. They have brought a unique thing to our community that draws people from far and wide. Thank you for your vision.
I would then be remiss if I wasn’t thankful to Louis Long, owner and operator of LL’s Bar & Grill — but more importantly, the namesake of the LL Burger.
This is no ordinary burger. It’s two patties of grilled ground beef perfection, and you get it fully dressed with everything. Get everything on it!
But moving in a less hedonistic direction for a minute — really, one of the best things I think both you and I should be thankful for in this small burg of ours is this community’s commitment to helping the less fortunate.
I grew up in church, but the particular parish I was in did not really talk about giving back to the poor. Maybe that’s because most of us were poor anyway, I don’t know.
So as I came of age in this community, how refreshing it was to know how many of you give back to those in need. And it’s not always who you think.
I’ve worked the doors at Walmart and Kroger. I’m impressed with how many people seem to give their last dime to help someone else.
Ask others besides me and they’ll tell you, those without are the most eager to give. Those seemingly with, are not.
And so that takes me to this last weekend, where I was able, in a very fun manner, to participate in yet another charity golf tournament.
We weren’t planning on winning. We just wanted to help out the Jaycees and their annual toy drive. Hopefully in a small way, we did.
This weekend I get to attend Havoc in Henry County. It starts at 6 p.m. Saturday at the CAPS building. This is the only real fundraiser the Paris Downtown Boxing Club does.
There are between 10 and 15 bouts of kids and possibly adults fighting their hearts out. It’s very fun. And it’s like five bucks!
The participants come from all over the South and the Midwest. It’s a USA Boxing-sanctioned amateur event. And I promise you will not get better entertainment on a Saturday night.
But mostly you get to know that your participation will foster the needs of kids looking to grow beyond their current situation.
We have kids born in poverty who now have the opportunity to not just reach success like Silver and Golden Gloves, but to develop discipline to keep their studies up.
And once taught that discipline, they can imagine higher education, where once they could not.
Derek and Miranda Moon champion this fight for these kids. I’m very happy to be a sponsor. And I’m very excited friends of mine also champion this event, like:
Judge Vicki Snyder, Mark and Rachel Nichols, John and Jane Etheridge, Andy Collins and Suzanne Collins, Dr. Joe Mobley, Gary Benton and Mike Brezina;
And businesses like Chris Martin Construction, Commercial Bank & Trust Co. and Matt Spellings of Edward Jones.
Let me give one more shout-out to the aforementioned Judge Snyder and the CASA chili cook-off going on at the Fairgrounds Saturday.
Look, what better combination: Stop in, eat some delicious chili and help out kids who need advocates to maneuver the legal positions in which their parents, or lack thereof, have put them.
Judge Snyder brought the idea of this program to Henry County, and the awesome folks on this committee have taken it and ran.
This is our community. It’s not perfect. But I’m thankful for those who recognize that and try to do something positive about it.
DAN JACKSON is a self-employed Paris businessman. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.