A New School in Decatur and Other Stuff

Last time I checked in, the Decatur School District was trying to build a new school in Lincoln Park. It was going to be a deal between the Decatur Park District, and District 61. That fell through when the Park District withdrew the offer.

I think that was a wise decision, not just because many people opposed it, but because Lincoln Park just isn’t a good spot for a school. With narrow roads and the Sangamon River across the street, it just didn’t seem safe or practical.

A new location has been selected and that is the site of the former Oak Grove Elementary School in Home Park. I’m not sure if this is going to replace the two campuses of Dennis, because the new location is not in the Dennis school boundaries, but I guess those boundaries could be redrawn.

Anyway, I’m happy with the location because it makes a lot of sense. It’s a big open area that was a site of a school for many years without issues. I live in the Ravina Park neighborhood, just next door to Home Park, so a new state-of-the-art school would be good for the neighborhood.

I’m not sure if boundaries will change drastically. It would be ideal if kids could walk to a school that is literally a few feet away from their house, and not be bused elsewhere, but that’s an issue all across town.

When my daughter went to Franklin, it was a neighborhood school full of neighborhood kids. Then, boundaries were redrawn and kids were bused in from elsewhere. The school wasn’t the same by the time my son attended. I’m sad to say, the school declined quite a bit. There were a lot of behavior issues and bullying which led to my decision to send my son, who has special needs, to a private school.

I truly hope the new school does well, but much of that, if not all of that, depends upon parents. Bad parenting is at the root of most of the ills in Decatur and elsewhere.

Fall Festivals

If you know me, you know I love fall. There are a lot of fall activities throughout Central Illinois in the months of September and October. From the Apple & Pork Festival in Clinton (Sep 24th-25th), to the Broom Corn Festival in Arcola (Sep 9th-11th), the Arthur Cheese Festival in Arthur (Sep 3rd-5th), to the many pumpkin patches, you should find plenty to do on the weekends from now until November.

The Macon County Fairgrounds will also be hosting a Harvest Festival, October 14th-16th. There will be activities for kids, rides, food, and more. I think this is the first year for it. Of course, Boo at the Zoo at Scovill Zoo in Decatur will run throughout much of October. It’s a family favorite for many in Decatur.

Of course, you know I’ll be visiting Greenwood Cemetery for my annual pilgrimage in October, though I think I missed it last year. I’m not there for ghosts or a creepy feeling, though I have to admit, creepy feelings are usually part of the experience.

I don’t know exactly how this started, but it has become my thing. Yes, it’s weird, but I go there to pay respect to the founders of the city. I feel connected to the past, and to those who worked hard to build this city.

A Good Change For Me

Speaking of working hard, my efforts are finally paying off as I’ve landed some big partnerships with some major bike companies in the United States. Hopefully, by this time next year, I’ll be in a much better place financially. I’m not going to be rich, but I should be more financially secure. Getting divorced in your 50s hits a person hard economically, and of course, in many other ways.

I’ve never been motivated by money. Instead, I’ve just always wanted enough so that I don’t have to think about it so dang much. I also want to be able to participate in the community again. My schedule doesn’t allow for much more than writing a blog post once in a while.

So, I’m hoping I can have a much better life with a lot fewer worries and a lot more meaningful pursuits.