Mayor's Corner 02/08/2019

Dear Friends:

Two weeks ago on Sunday evening, She Who Shall Not Be Named informed me that she had a great idea. I fully expected it would have something to do with cleaning the garage, exercising more and/or eating less; but I was mistaken. Instead, she suggested that we each write our histories and give them to our children for next Christmas.

I thought this was a great idea until she wanted me to turn off Bonanza and start writing---right that minute! Like most other times when she is highly motivated and strongly suggests something, I eventually give in to the greater power and conform.

I love history, but I’m not so sure about my own. As I have studied genealogy and family history, I’ve pictured perfect, flawless folks without even so much as the occasional runny nose. Sometimes, that’s how histories are written.

I know enough about life to know that these people were probably not miraculously lifted up to heaven. They were normal people with plenty of faults. I also know that when you write a history of yourself, there’s no requirement to have it be a “tell-all” or a confession. With all of that in mind, I capitulated and accepted the challenge.

I plan on telling mostly the truth. I will make myself out to be an intelligent, studious child that was serious about all the right things. I actually remember this being the case twice in my life. Both times, I had just been caught doing something that won’t fit very well in my life narrative.

I’ll have to admit this has been really enjoyable so far. I wholeheartedly encourage all of you to get started writing or recording your history. It’s brought back memories of wonderful parents, kind teachers and inspiring coaches who helped me navigate through my youth and keep me out of jail.

There’s a tendency to either self-aggrandize or self-deprecate. The truth is generally somewhere in the middle. There’s lots of help out there to get you started with your own history, so please, no more excuses! It will be a treasure for many, whether you believe it or not.

Mayor David Ogden

Mayor's Corner 01/31/2019

Dear Friends:

As he stared at my various projects, my high school shop teacher would always shake his head and say, “sand it up.”  Those are, as far as I can remember, the only words he ever said to me. I sanded some of my work to the point it disappeared completely!

I have friends who know how to build things, and do it beautifully. One of those talented individuals is Kelly Stewart. Last year, he resurrected an old pioneer cupboard and made it beautiful and functional again. He then generously donated it to our Visitor Center. You should come and see it, and I’d be happy to arrange that. Remember, however, that we’re looking for more volunteers for the Center this summer and I’m in recruiting mode! It’s an incredibly rewarding experience, and I’d love to explain to you how you can help us.

Kelly is one of those rare folks who can look at something and see the possibilities. He has repurposed old windows and made them into beautiful cabinets for miscellaneous whatnots. We have whatnots galore in one of Kelly’s creations. He has just the right temperament and talent to build or fix almost anything.

Personally, I fall short on creativity unless I am on a stage in front of an audience. In that setting, I’ve managed to create misunderstanding, hate and discord, along with an occasional laugh.

Laughing with those who are laughing at me is a talent I developed as a boy. As an eleven year-old, I remember singing the song, Rubber Ball by Bobby Vee in front of my sixth grade class. It was my bright idea for “show and tell.” On the front row was a Navajo friend named Chet Bryant. He was so embarrassed for me that he crawled under his own desk as a favor to his friend.

If America’s Got Talent was around then they would have said to me, “If your phone doesn’t ring, you’ll know it’s us.”

Mayor David Ogden

Mayor's Corner 01/17/2019

Dear Friends:

We’re always looking for new businesses here in the city.  There would be no better news than to have a company looking at our valley favorably when considering starting or expanding a business.  We need to have different sites available for different needs, and we do.

As many of you know, we have a business park south of town.  It’s on the East side of Highway 118, near the Sevier County Maintenance Yard.  The park contains 70-plus acres of land, with all the utilities installed and ready for development.  You can help!  Each of us has a different circle of acquaintances and contacts.  Please be on the lookout lookout for small manufacturers who want a beautiful, functional location that is ready for tenants.

There are other locations that fit into Opportunity Tax Zones on the west side of our community.. Sevier County Economic Development Director Malcolm Nash can explain the advantages of building or investing in an Opportunity Zone.

Everyone probably gets tired of hearing me say to shop locally.  It may sound like an old, tired phrase, but that doesn’t make it any less important.  Every resident should understand how the dollars spent with local merchants go all around our community several times.  It’s really the life-blood of a regional hub such as Richfield.

In my experience, our local businesses are very competitive for most goods and services.  Let’s make our own retailers the first and last place to shop.  If I honestly look at it, I have never once saved by traveling north or south to shop.  When you factor in the cost of travel, including eating, and the FACT that you buy more than you intended to buy, we would all be better off to shop here!  Besides, I haven’t seen too many stores from Salt Lake or St. George with their names on our baseball fields or supporting any number of local causes.  Let’s support those who make our community great!

Mayor David Ogden

Mayor's Corner 01/24/2019

Dear Friends:

I’m always amazed at the seamless transformation of the seasons at my home.  Magically, somehow, the Christmas decorations have disappeared and now hearts have popped up everywhere.  It’s not that that I’m unwilling to help.  It’s just that I am no help.  I have no sense of style or fashion, not to mention that my patience for such things never developed in my youth.

We love puzzles during the holidays.  I’m happy to say they’ve all been completed, and the pieces we searched for and swore were missing miraculously turned up right among the others.   So much for blaming the grandchildren for lost pieces.  We have decided to never again purchase a puzzle with hundreds of pieces that are the same shade of green.

I have been thinking about puzzles lately and I share this thought with you.  It is relatively easy to get the outside edge of a puzzle put together.  That’s how so many things in life are.  The framework of projects is often easily conceived and agreed upon by the puzzlers.  It’s the detail that takes time and effort and collaboration.  Unlike a puzzle, we can change the look of things as we go along.  If we doggedly say there’s only one way it will work; if we have no flexibility; then we can easily lose valuable participants whose contributions might yield a better result.

As we puzzle as to how our new Community Development and Aquatic Center should look and function, we must be willing to look at things from different points of view. I’m confident that it will come together and that one day, not so far away, we will all be saying that the parts fit.  We’ll find that it truly is a blessing that puzzlers and planners worked together with foresight and determination to put it together.

   

Nothing worthwhile is easy!

Mayor David Ogden

Mayor's Corner 01/10/2019

Dear Friends:

You may not know (or even care), but I’ve served on the Utah State Board of Juvenile Justice Services (JJS) for the past three years.  During that time, I’ve formed opinions based on the dozen or so seminars and some thirty-plus meetings with the top professionals in our state in that field.  These professionals lead JJS and make decisions about programs and strategies that affect our youth in schools, courts, and our Shelter Receiving Center in Richfield.

Adolescence is remembered more than any other time of our life, largely because it involves a lot of “firsts”.  I’m sure you and I could each name a hundred or more.  It’s a time of elasticity in the brain.  It’s the time our brain is built, rewired and remodeled.  We remember things.

When we become adults, most of that brain remodeling ceases.  I believe that adolescence is being stretched on both ends now.  We can’t just hold our breath while our children and grandchildren pass through it.  We can make a difference in the lives of our youth by simply and actively getting involved.

As always, I have made some resolutions for this year.  They don’t involve a lot of brain-stretching, but they do involve change.  I’ve committed to be more willing to listen and more willing to look at problems from different points of view.  Along those lines, She Who Shall Not Be Named has all ready declared that I need to readjust the way I look at my garage collection.

Mayor David Ogden

Mayors Corner

  • Mayor's Corner 02/08/2019

    Dear Friends: Two weeks ago on Sunday evening, She Who Shall Not Be Named informed me that she had a great idea. I fully expected it would have something to do with cleaning the garage, exercising more and/or eating less; but I was mistaken. Instead, she suggested that we each write our histories and give them to our children for next Christmas. I thought this was a great idea until she wanted me to turn off Bonanza and start writing---right that minute! Like most other times when she is...

    Read more: Mayor's...

  • Mayor's Corner 01/31/2019

    Dear Friends: As he stared at my various projects, my high school shop teacher would always shake his head and say, “sand it up.”  Those are, as far as I can remember, the only words he ever said to me. I sanded some of my work to the point it disappeared completely! I have friends who know how to build things, and do it beautifully. One of those talented individuals is Kelly Stewart. Last year, he resurrected an old pioneer cupboard and made it beautiful and functional again. He then...

    Read more: Mayor's...

  • Mayor's Corner 01/24/2019

    Dear Friends: I’m always amazed at the seamless transformation of the seasons at my home.  Magically, somehow, the Christmas decorations have disappeared and now hearts have popped up everywhere.  It’s not that that I’m unwilling to help.  It’s just that I am no help.  I have no sense of style or fashion, not to mention that my patience for such things never developed in my youth. We love puzzles during the holidays.  I’m happy to say they’ve all been completed, and the pieces we searched for and...

    Read more: Mayor's...

  • Mayor's Corner 01/17/2019

    Dear Friends: We’re always looking for new businesses here in the city.  There would be no better news than to have a company looking at our valley favorably when considering starting or expanding a business.  We need to have different sites available for different needs, and we do. As many of you know, we have a business park south of town.  It’s on the East side of Highway 118, near the Sevier County Maintenance Yard.  The park contains 70-plus acres of land, with all the utilities installed and...

    Read more: Mayor's...

  • Mayor's Corner 01/10/2019

    Dear Friends: You may not know (or even care), but I’ve served on the Utah State Board of Juvenile Justice Services (JJS) for the past three years.  During that time, I’ve formed opinions based on the dozen or so seminars and some thirty-plus meetings with the top professionals in our state in that field.  These professionals lead JJS and make decisions about programs and strategies that affect our youth in schools, courts, and our Shelter Receiving Center in Richfield. Adolescence is remembered more...

    Read more: Mayor's...

  • Mayor's Corner 01/03/2019

    Dear Friends I’m asked regularly if it’s hard to come up with thoughts for an article each week. Thoughts race through my head like a whirlwind. The difficult part is organizing them so that they make sense! I received a “new to me” old book of poetry for Christmas. I already read hours of Kipling, Henley, Frost, Whitman, Burns, Cummings, Yeats, Dickenson and others. I’m tempted to quote the well-expressed thoughts of these pros, but I’ll resist. I can easily reflect on the year just passed or...

    Read more: Mayor's...

  • Mayor's Corner 12/27/2018

    Dear Friends: By now most of the plastic toys your children and grandchildren received for Christmas are broken and beyond repair.  The new clothing we received did not make us look any thinner. Do you ever talk to your clothing?  She Who Shall Not Be Named has caught me talking to nearly all my clothing, and I wasn’t being very nice!  Everything used to glide on and I could jump in and out of things in a second.  Now, clothing is made to trip me up.  Stockings must be put on while seated (and...

    Read more: Mayor's...

  • Mayor's Corner 12/20/2018

    Dear Friends If I talk any more about Christmases past, it will seem that I’m living in the past, and that’s definitely not the case.  To prove to you my forward-thinking nature, I’ve already resolved to eat less in the New Year and shrink. The intended result is that I won’t need to hold my breath when I tie my shoelaces! Over the past few weeks, our City has been blessed with a wonderful Messiah performance, Christmas Tree Lane, great concerts, dozens of basketball games and other events and...

    Read more: Mayor's...

  • Mayor's Corner 12/13/2018

    Dear Friends: Last weekend I was reflecting on what the Christmas season might have been like for some of my progenitors.  John Williamson Coons was my father’s grandfather.  He was born on December 7, 1853 in Bethlehem, Iowa.  His father, Lebbeus Thaddeus Coons is buried in our Pioneer Cemetery west of Richfield High School. John was the Sevier County Sheriff from 1889 to 1901.  His wife, Eliza Ann Ogilvie, was the daughter of George and Eliza Ann Ogilvie who were among the first settlers in...

    Read more: Mayor's...

  • Mayor's Corner 12/06/2018

    Dear Friends: As I was driving on Thanksgiving weekend, I happened to look up and see that we had a beautiful, full moon. As we traveled along (at the posted speed limit), I noticed that the moon seemed to be moving with us. It appeared to keep pace with us! As a young boy this perception fascinated me so much that I even stopped teasing my sisters and watched and wondered. As we mature and understand distance and perspective, we lose the wonder of certain things. If we’re not careful we can...

    Read more: Mayor's...

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