Thumbs down: To the demise of the Christian Women's Club. The group has been meeting for more than 60 years (as best anyone can remember), but with dwindling membership and its chairwoman stepping down, it looks like the last meeting has adjourned. Changing times and priorities also likely play a factor. Either way, it's sad to see something like this club fall by the wayside.
Thumbs up: To engaged congregations. On the bright side, several area churches are reporting steady or increasing membership. Not only that, but a more involved membership, too.
In a recent Tribune story, local pastors said that a growing number of people in their congregations are becoming more involved in church missions, ministries and other activities. Younger families and creating community connections are two factors they cited.
So while the Christian Women's Club may not be the way churchgoers want to connect in 2020, connection is still an important part of the local faith community.
Thumbs down: To the wrong foot. As in, starting 2020 on the wrong foot. As we scan through the Detroit Lakes and Becker County law enforcement logs for Jan. 1, 2020, we see our new year started as the last one left: assaults, threats, shoplifting reports, etc. etc. It's a reminder that the bad actors around us don't take a holiday, don't care about the renewing aspect of a new year, or really care about others but themselves.
Thumbs up: To Norby Flats downtown. With the changing of the calendar, we saw a lot of scaffolding pulled away, the sidewalk opened and the new Norby Flats on Washington Avenue debut. The apartments (with some business tenant space available on the first floor) opened on Jan. 1. It is heartening to see new life and business spring up while still honoring the Norby's department store history, a Detroit Lakes fixture for decades before it closed. Good show!
Thumbs down: Snow. Snow? Snow. While the stars of a classic musical sang that they each wanted to "wash my hands, my face and hair with snow," we in northwest Minnesota are already sick of snow. Snow. Sliding around, brushing windows off, shoveling sidewalks and driveways covered in snow. Snow. Detroit Lakes already had way beyond the amount of average snow (snow) in the last three months of 2019 -- including 32 inches in December of cold, white, annoying snow. Snow.
Haven't we all had it up to here already with snow? Snow!