Struggling with the Christmas letter
By Susan Thacker 530News –
Dear family and friends,
It’s that time of year, when I send solstice greetings to all of the people I don’t want to lose touch with, even if I kind of have already. This is the only contact some of us will have all year. Others may see me at the family reunion and the occasional wedding or funeral.
So, what’s new with me? I still work for a newspaper in Great Bend, Kansas. Every week, I write stories that are seen by a few thousand people, so you’d think I could write a few words about what’s been going on in my life in 2016.
Our paper, the Great Bend Tribune, recently started a weekly paper that is mailed to everyone in the 67‘530’ ZIP code. It’s called 530. Some of my Tribune stories are reprinted there, and I’ve started writing a weekly column called “Life on the Ark.”
I came up with the name because 530 is all about local news, and Great Bend is located on the “great bend” of the Arkansas River. It’s also a play on the word “ark,” because a good story has a strong narrative arc, and each person’s life is a story. And there’s also the idea that we all live together, sharing our journey on a metaphorical ark called planet Earth. It’s a wild ride … some might say a real zoo.
OK, I’m still working on the Ark metaphor. Meanwhile, the Tribune’s Hugo Gonzalez has created a “Life on the Ark” graphic for the 530 website, www.530news.net. It’s a ship’s wheel overlooking a lot of water — definitely not the Ark River. He’s still thinking about the graphic, though.
Well, a lot has happened in Great Bend in 2016. We’ve had our share of exciting news, sad news and drama, but in December the town is all about community traditions. We had a Home for the Holidays parade right after Thanksgiving, the A Capella Choir did its annual Vespers concert and the Great Bend Rec Commission held its Santa’s Workshop. There are many more things I could mention, and if you keep reading my column you may see some of them.
Merry Christmas, bless you all and stay warm!
Susan Thacker is the news editor at the Great Bend Tribune. She welcomes suggestions for topics of community interest for the Tribune or her 530 column, “Life on the Ark.” Send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.