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Letters to the Editor for 6/30/08

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By

OUR HEROES, OUR FRIENDS

On a recent trip to Fries to visit my mother, I noticed Harry Boyles cutting grass on the bank in front of the “Y.”

It was an extremely hot and humid day. I decided to stop and thank him, and tell him what a fantastic job that he and his brother, Larry, do for the town.

I asked Harry when he was going to retire, and he replied “When I die. I love my job.”

These guys are both retirement age (sorry, guys), and they continue to brave all the elements to do their work, and keep the town in fantastic shape. You can call on these guys anytime, and they’ll be there.

I remember as a teenager, I loved watching these two guys play baseball. They were extraordinary players. They could hit the ball out of the park, and the crowds would roar. They’re still all-stars and they’re still “getting their game on.”

When you see these guys cutting grass, stop and thank them. Offer them a cold bottle of water. Keep them hydrated and keep them motivated, because when they’re gone, they’re gone. They cannot be replaced.

I hope these guys never require a blood transfusion, because the blood that’s surging through their veins is not only rare, it’s extinct.

It’s the blood type of hardworking, dedicated, honest men who love their town and the people. Of the precious few heroes that we have left, guys, you’re the best.

Becky Jones-Potter

Burlington, N.C.

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VOLUNTEERS MADE FESTIVAL A SUCCESS

I want to personally thank everyone who helped make the Galax Leaf & String Festival a success. Without the help of loyal volunteers, such an event could not be possible.

This year’s festival had new attractions and events, all of which helped showcase our wonderful longstanding offerings.

So many individuals played key roles in the success, but we couldn’t begin to have a festival if the streets were not closed in an efficient manner.

Charlie Joyce and his city crew along with Chief Clark and the Galax Police Department have street closings and openings down to a science. They and their crews work tirelessly to ensure our events run smoothly and safely.

Randy Butcher, electrician extraordinaire, and Joey Davis once again kept everything electrical and mechanical running flawlessly as they spent the weekend resolving challenges.

Others who helped tremendously with the festival include Bobby Patterson and the Blue Ridge Music Makers Guild; Laying J Leather and the Lilly Pad for great stage decorations; Sharon Ritchie and Kay Weddle, for organizing the Authors on Grayson and P. Buckley Moss events; The Galax Smokehouse for support of festival equipment; Judy and Larry Brannock and the Twin County Chamber for spending dozens of hours at the information booth.

Thank you to Jerry Correll, Stu Shenk, Stevie Barr, Derrick Davis, Joe Wilson and Rex Theatre volunteers for all your help with the music. And finally, to Tess Caldwell for assisting with event organization, vendors, musician hospitality, and managing the details necessary for a successful festival.

We had great participation from civic groups, churches, and grassroots organizations which provided fun activities for attendees while bringing awareness to worthy causes. Their presence contributed greatly to the overall quality of Leaf & String.

Sponsors of the event deserve appreciation for their commitment to supporting our cultural heritage and helping it thrive through their financial contributions.

There are dozens of others who are not mentioned here but they all deserve a big “thank you” for all their hard work in making this festival a success and helping to showcase Galax as a great place to live and work!

Chuck Riedhammer

Director of tourism and

community development

City of Galax