BY JANIE DOLLINGER

Somedays I wonder just how many times I can listen/watch/read the daily news with so much violence, political strife, disrespect and devastating events. It is easy to get discouraged and I began to wonder and question what I/we can do to improve our community, county, state, country and world.

I would like to suggest we can start at home by enjoying fellowship with our neighbors, being actively engaged members of our community and patronize our local businesses. Let me ask you — have you:

– Visited the Lanark downtown Farmers’ Market held every Tuesday from 3-6?

– Complimented the many business owners for painting, renovation, restoration projects? Lanark buildings are looking super. Continue to watch the progress of the Cornerstone Project, NFP as they work on the Valentine building.

– The Chamber of Commerce has a new tourist kiosk south of the municipal building thanks to many volunteers. Did you ever guess it houses a Little Free Library, bulletin board for posting events and community brochures?

– Have you made plans to attend Celebrate Lanark at Eastland Jr/Sr High School on Sept. 30 from 4-7 pm?

– Did you thank the Transformers Committee for the attractive downtown flower planters and street banners?

– Have you taken a child to the city park and enjoyed all the new sidewalks and improvements? Thank the Park Committee.

– Did you sponsor, volunteer and participate in Old Settlers’ Day events?

– Are you sharing extra garden produce with neighbors and friends?

– Have you even attended a city council, school board, county board meeting so you can become informed about local government?

– Do you read the Eastland School monthly calendar?

– Have you attended any Eastland sporting events, concerts, art show? Do you know the Lanark Public Library showcases 6 pieces of art work each month?

– Have you taken time to thank a city/township worker, your city council representatives and elected officials?

– The Lanark Public Library at 111-B South Broad St. has a wide variety of books and other materials. Check it out soon.

– Donations are welcomed by the Shannon/Lanark Food Pantry at 109 E Badger St, Shannon every 1st and 3rd Tuesday from 2-4 p.m.

– Planned and served a meal featuring all local foods?

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Thank you for supporting our sponsors! They help us bring you the news.

– Joined a local service organization?

– Did you attend Pie on the Porch sponsored by Friends of the Lanark Public Library held at Picket Fence Florals?

– Have you thanked the Lions Club members for lining the streets with the American flags?

– Did you take your summer company to see the Cotta Historical Marker on South Broad Street?

– We are blessed to live in a community with seven active churches. Do you know they work together with Shannon churches to carry on many varied activities of the Eastland Council of Churches?

– Did you chuckle when waking up to the clever white cup project decorating your lawn this summer?

– Have you donated used books, puzzles, and DVD’s to Twice-Sold Tales used bookstore operated by the Friends of the Lanark Public Library? TST is located in the Unique Mall at the Special Touch Florist shop at 504 W IL RT 64.

– Sept 26 the Lanark Farmers Market will host recycling for used batteries, worn flags, eye glasses, cell phones and ink cartridges.

– Eastland Schools boasts great families, awesome communities, top-notch faculty and staff. Take time to acknowledge the hard working administration, board members, teachers, janitors, bus drivers, cooks, and support staff.

– Did you read about all the amazing community projects carried out by the First Brethren Church Workation Team and the Home Improvement Taskforce? Their roofing projects and handyman skills have been a real asset to many homeowners.

– Did you know the Friends of the LPL are having Wacko’s Magic Show at 5:30 at Celebrate Lanark on Sept. 30? Wacko the Clown will return by popular demand and will also do face painting.

– Did you know the Transformers Committee has a used clothing booth in the Unique Mall at the Special Touch? Great prices and the proceeds to beautify our town.

– End of the Road Antique Shop is a great shopping destination when you have out of town company.

– Many people driving Route 64 comment on the beautifully groomed Lanark Cemetery. Tell the caretaker Amy and the board how much you appreciate their dedication.

– Do you own a copy of the book Sesquicentennial Lanark? A package deal will be offered at Celebrate Lanark for $40. That includes the book, DVD set, cookbook and Cotta booklet.

Don’t stop with my list of random ideas. Add your own thoughts, new experiences and pay it forward. Let’s all join together and we can make a difference. Lanark has so many POSITIVE things going on — let’s put those in the spotlight and share on social media.

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