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Sat, Mar 28th, 2009
Posted in Commentary

This past week has definitely been positively enlightening.

First, I need to thank all of our readers, in print and online, for giving me your feedback on our new features.

More and more people are replacing their time in front of the television with time in front of their computers.

Hence, this was a significant driving factor behind our launch of video on the Web in early March. And without a doubt, it's been a HUGE success, with well over 3,000 viewings of our video collection, thus far.

With that said, we do have some more surprises around the corner that we think you'll enjoy -- in print and online.

Second, I like to get out of the office and visit with people in the communities we serve. So, this past Wednesday, I asked Peggi Redalen, our salesperson for Rushford, if she could help me get better acquainted with the Rushford area.

After enjoying a curvy jauntthrough the bluffs, passing the quaint towns of Whalan (with its World Famous Pies) and Peterson (the last stop before the big city), I came to the very busy community of Rushford.

I obviously didn't live in the area during the 2007 flood that overwhelmed Rushford, but I've heard and read stories along with viewing videos assembled on the Journal's website.

I can whole-heartedly empathize with anyone going through a flood, since I survived the Rochester flood of 1978. I was old enough to remember it, but too young to help my parents with the enormous task of clean-up. So, I spent the majority of that summer with my grandparents, Bob and Mary Jane Sethre, in Preston.

As I have become more aware of how the past couple of years have shaken the town of Rushford, it's refreshing to see so much progress in such a short amount of time.

Peggi and I visited with Mark Johnson and saw the site of the new Norsland Lefse facility. We visited with the owners of Nordic Lanes, Rushford Foods, Rushford Dental, Shawnee's Bar & Grill, and many others.

In general, I drove back to Preston with one incredible impression. You know that new car smell that almost everyone loves?

Rushford has that.

With all of the remodeling and construction, Rushford is renewing itself.

They are poised for greatness.

I told a native Prestonian, and life-long farmer, about how I was so impressed with how the people of Rushford have recovered.

With admiration, he said, "Those people in Rushford are strong. They get things done."

For anyone living through the Rushford flood, I've gathered very quickly that you are respected for your tenacity and character -- and your new car smell.

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