Thumbs UP -- green ones -- to the eight cities and towns in the area that earned or kept their Tree City U.S.A. designations -- some for decades. Oak Harbor, Norwalk, Clyde, Fremont, Bellevue, Port Clinton, Sandusky and Milan -- in order of seniority -- demonstrate they know overall health and livability is not something to bark at -- or "leave" to chance. It's a mean town indeed that can't spare even a little green space.
Thumbs UP to Vermilion-on-the-Lake for keeping its community center vital and active in its 90th year. A community has to have some place to put its heart, and this is it.
Thumbs UP for common sense prevailing and turning what could have been a ridiculous felony into a more suitable demeanor charge -- all for the throwing of a snowball at a Willard school bus driver. Instead of being tossed in lockup and possibly snared in the system, the teen gets to make amends, and maybe will one day look at this as something that helped mold him into a responsible adult, instead of one more lost statistic.
Thumbs UP to the idea of high-speed passenger rail through Sandusky, reinforcing an existing, though admittedly shaky, passenger network. Unfortunately, it's the type of idea that has to really spread before it can take off in any meaningful way -- and the population density here isn't the same as on the Eastern Seaboard, where high-speed passenger rail actualy works -- but you have to start somewhere.
Thumbs DOWN to the fact that, more than a dozen years after the state legislature was told by the courts to fix the school funding system, local school districts still have to go hat in hand to voters in a wildly inefficient and unfair system that puts the burden on small property owners in the districts where the money is needed the most.
Thumbs UP to tonight's performance of Cirque D'Or at the Sandusky State Theatre. Yes, tickets of $20-$60 might seem steep, but think about what you'd pay in the venues where such events are traditionally staged -- and think about the fact such events are staged here at all. Yes, there are all sorts of things to do here.