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Journal writing project: My unique community

By Kaia Hongerholt

Fri, Oct 11th, 2013
Posted in Lanesboro Journal Student Writing Project

Small towns may seem like a dime a dozen in Southeastern Minnesota. However that is simply not the case in Lanesboro. People come from all around the country to bike on the famous Root River bike trail that runs through the heart of the community. Even though there are many tourist ‘hot spots’ located throughout the bluff countryside, that is not the most alluring aspect of being a member of the local community. When one comes from such a tight knit area of the Midwest, it is hard to understand the hustle and bustle of big city living where one is not even familiar with his/her next door neighbors. Coming from a small town, such as Lanesboro, has been such a rewarding experience for me as an individual.

The massive amount of community support for not only the local businesses and the theater company, but also the school and all of its academic and athletic endeavors is an essential component to the family-like atmosphere that the town has come to be accustomed to. A prime example of this is demonstrated through the great support that all of the athletic programs have from the community...whether it is older adults purchasing their season tickets for the various athletic events, Butch offering half price shaved ice after a winning game, or being able to count on the entire city to show up at the Metrodome in the Twin Cities for a state championship football game in the middle of November.

Not only does the school benefit from this outstanding community, but the citizens also can rely on a familiar face or pleasant greeting when entering one of the many local businesses that are staffed by many of the high school athletes. Whether it is Chelsea Hanson assisting customers at the BP gas station, or Olivia Haug asking if you would like a combo with your cheeseburger at Gil B’s, the people of Lanesboro have come to recognize the students that have submersed themselves throughout the community.

This allows the older generations to become familiar with the current high school students, and increases the likelihood that these individuals will support the athletic organizations at the school through either attendance at the games or donations for new uniforms or athletic equipment.

Not only does this community support the athletic endeavors of the students, but also the academic activities that are taking place throughout the school district. Townspeople in recent years have been willing to increase taxes in order to add an addition to the school or improve the landscape surrounding the school grounds.

People of all ages in the Lanesboro school district are always willing to help, donate, or volunteer when it is needed to assist the athletic or academic programs through the school. I know that I am very proud to come from a community that places such a high value on the future leaders of this country, and could not imagine living any place else.

Kaia Hongerholt is a student at Lanesboro High School. She is one of 8 area students participating in the Journal Writing Project, now in its fifteenth year.

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