West End News March 18

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Polly Erickson, coordinator of the recent West End blood drive, reports that the drive was successful once again. Colds and the flu forced some registered volunteers to skip donation; but the blood center people were pleased with the support extended to the program by our West End folks.

Polly wishes to thank all of the volunteer donors, and in return the West End community gives a lot of thanks to Polly for her dedication. There is more to bringing a blood drive to a successful result than meets the eye.

Polly says that the next blood drive at Zoar Church will be in July. Stay healthy!

Nothing is ever simple. The census, which is now ongoing, is a case in point. A very pertinent question involves "snowbirds,” local residents who escape from our winter weather to warmer places. The question is at what location should a snowbird be counted in the census? Here at home or winter refuge? The answer without any doubt is, declare your residence where you really live, here in Cook County. Please explain this to friends and relatives who are away for the winter.  This is no joke; we absolutely need every single resident to be counted here. If Minnesota loses a seat in Congress, legislative districts will need to be redrawn. The bulk of people in Minnesota now live in metropolitan areas. It is easy to guess that redistricting would favor those areas, and we would lose what little legislative power that we have now.

In the last census count, Cook and Aitkin counties had the lowest percentage of response of all the counties in the state. That is just plain dumb if this happens again. Fill out the very simple form and return it right away. Otherwise we may lose eligibility for many funding programs after the results of the census are counted.

A community effort is being organized to gather bicycles to provide transportation for our many summer workers. The workers need a way to get from home to work and to just get around in whichever community they are located while they are here. The bike path that runs along Highway 61 is a very efficient route for workers to get from one place to another in the West End, so bikes are practical in the West End.

If you have a bike that is in working condition, or that can be fixed up, the committee working on this would like to hear from you. There must be dozens of bikes that have not been used in a long time, which would be a big help to these workers.

For more information call Rick Schubert at 475-2778.

I must confess that I get a little edgy when there is any danger that the West End community is not a full partner in decisions that directly affect our well-being. We hear a lot about Superior National golf course, its funding, deficits, management and fate from county and city officials. I don't hear much about the West End town governments and business community contribution to decisions about this course. Very significant revenue comes to the West End from the course. The welfare of the West End economy should be one of the first considerations in any discussion about the course.

Let us hope that the new cooperative effort to join the various business promotion organizations is a first step toward giving everyone an equal voice in essential decisions. The fate of the golf course is an essential decision.

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