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Volunteerism essential in today’s society

By Staff | May 20, 2011

Everywhere you look, government cuts at the federal and state levels are impacting people locally.

That’s why volunteerism is so important – to pick up the slack.

This week we saw a number of wonderful examples of how volunteerism is making a difference here, nationwide and even throughout the world.

Ed Boucher is sending deer jerky to troops in Iraq, perhaps remembering the cold, hungry time he spent in Korea where he was decorated with the Bronze Star for actions that warranted much more.

The Friends of Fort Defiance Tuesday did a massive amount of work on the park, cleaning up around the lodge area, cleaning out grills and spreading woodchips over the White Tail Ridge interpretive trail in anticipation of the first Fort Defiance Day Saturday, June 25.

The local friends group also applied for grants for the new park benches throughout the park as well as crushed rock that’s making a huge difference for park visitors.

People have noticed, and the park is busy, with regular campground visitors.

Volunteers hosted tables at the annual Tour of Tables fundraiser for the Estherville Good Samaritan Society Wednesday night. Iowa Lakes Electric Cooperative, by the way, provided its beautiful community room for the occasion.

And on Thursday, the Estherville Rotary Club honored Estherville Lincoln Central juniors who received Purple Cord honors.

This summer, we can look for a huge volunteer turnout for the Emmet County Relay For Life, Ringsted Danish Day and Tuttle Lake Day in June; the flight breakfast and Armstrong Fourth of July parade in July and Sweet Corn Days in August. And all summer long, we can expect to see the Black Knights Car Club sponsoring cruise-ins and the Sweet Corn Days car show.

These events help in a lot of ways, by filling in the gap left by declining government help.

Most parts of the country aren’t as lucky as we are, to have such a dedicated cadre of volunteers.

If you would like to volunteer, just ask any member of the Estherville Area Chamber of Commerce or the Emmet County Community Foundation.

Or check the Estherville Daily News to see what volunteer organizations are doing – they’re making news all the time.