Letter to the Editor

Fairgrounds endowment a gift for generations

Friday, June 24, 2011

To the Editor:

I have been asked to support a new endowment for the fairgrounds. I said yes without hesitation and I would like to tell you why.

First, I am not a Putnam County native. I married into this great place in 1988. I have found myself very welcomed here from my first job in the courthouse to teaching at South Putnam and now Cloverdale schools. My husband and I have been raising 4 children here: Chelsey, Courtney, Cameron and R.T. We have been blessed both by the Putnam County Fair and 4-H and the Foundation with a Lilly Scholarship for Chelsey.

Second, through 4-H our children have met great leaders in Mona and Jenna Smith, Dave Berry, Lauralee Baugh, the Queen Contest Committee, the announcers at the swine and sheep shows, and the many hundreds of others that volunteer to make the fair happen each year. They have seen people help with service projects every year in their hometown of Cloverdale and through their church.

Service to your community is just one characteristic that I find priceless in this community. To give back when you can is a lesson we have encouraged our own children to learn. Our children have given back to the sheep and swine barn in financial donations and time. This year we have the opportunity to give back to the fair grounds.

Third, to be a founder in the Fairgrounds Endowment is an investment of $1,000. In my mind (a math teacher) I see this as 20 years of 4-H for four children. Yes, R.T. started when Chelsey was finishing!

So for 20 years of family time spent walking hogs and sheep, sewing clothes, painting furniture, driving lawn mowers, and much more it will cost us $50 a year. That is really cheap family time for us. We can't even take the whole family to a movie for $50. If I figure this per child, I arrive at $12.50 a year. I know that my family is in the last six years of 4- H but I hope to keep watching nephews, nieces, neighbors and former students' children for the rest of my Putnam County life.

Please take a moment and contact the Putnam County Foundation with your donation today or see us in the booth at the fair.

Malinda Mann