Out and About – Week of September 4th

Monday was Labor Day. Summer activities are pretty much in the history books and the children are back in school. The days will soon be getting cooler and next month the colors will start becoming evident. If you’ve never been to the Air Zoo in Kalamazoo, this would be the perfect time to go, because the kids are back in school and it’s too early for field trips. Just a thought.

It’s not too early to start your Christmas shopping. Das Essenhaus in Middlebury, Indiana has their Christmas displays out already. The last time I checked, Thanksgiving arrives before Christmas. I’m pretty sure greed has something to do with this. Merchants have always tried to get a jump in the action before their competition. It seems to me that Christmas decorations and sales arrive earlier every year.

Autumn is such a wonderful time of the year. The colors and smells of fall run rampant here in Michigan. I can hardly wait to bite into that first locally-grown apple, which means apple cider will also be available. We are fortunate to have apple orchards within a short driving distance of Three Rivers. Get Out and About and patronize our local merchants.

The Color Tour will soon be here, so watch this newspaper for more news on this annual event. The Sunday Color Tour is a fun afternoon for the entire family. Hopefully, the colors will be near their peak by then.

The news media is to blame for many of the problems that exist in our society today. Bad news will always overpower good news. How many of you can just drive by an auto accident, with emergency personnel on the scene, and not look for the blood and gore of the accident? A lot of fans attend a hockey game hoping that a fight breaks out between the players. A NASCAR race would be boring, if not for the occasional crash on one of the turns. I love watching the evening news. “The weather today was perfect. I’ll let you know when we can expect some bad weather.”

I think it’s time we should step back and take life a little less seriously. Let’s laugh a little more and treat each other the same way we’d like to be treated. It’s not that difficult and less stressful. Life is short, so enjoy it to the fullest.

The St. Joseph County Grange Fair is just a week or two away. This fair has a reputation for being one of the finest in southwestern Michigan. Plenty of thrill rides for the youngsters, an overabundance of tasty food, and of course, enough exhibit barns to keep one busy for hours. I always enjoy checking the horse shows. It’s amazing to watch the youngsters handle these magnificent animals. Watching the truck and tractor pulls, makes me wish I had the funds and the talent to be a part of these events. Kudos to Fair Manager Bill Johnson. I’m sure you’ve done all you can to make sure everyone will be entertained and have a good and safe time. Kudos also to the many volunteers. Without them, this annual event would not be possible.

We are about to change seasons again. The nice thing about Michigan is that we have four of them. Fall, or some might call it Autumn, is quickly approaching. We’ve received a sample or two of what we can expect already. Some furnaces have kicked on a time or two and using that blanket at night is becoming more and more the thing to do.

Before it’s too late, it might be a good idea to perform a little preventive maintenance on your furnace. This is one thing I dread, because our furnace is in the basement. I don’t mind venturing down there during the daytime, but at night the Boogieman comes out, so I’ll leave it at that.

The blades on your furnace’s blower should be cleaned on an annual basis. Grimy blades push air over the heat exchanger less efficiently. Some fans can be cleaned in place, but most do require removal.

When choosing a furnace filter, keep in mind that a high efficiency filter removes up to 95 percent of fine dust particles. It’s not a bad idea to have a heating professional do a quick inspection.

In the last 4000 years, no new animals have been domesticated.

See you Out and About!

Submitted by Norm Stutesman

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